CardX at a Glance
What is CardX?
CardX is a merchant services provider founded in 2013. What makes CardX different from other merchant services companies is that businesses pay no fees when processing credit card transactions. Instead, customers pay a 3.5% surcharge for using a credit card.
In my experience, this customer surcharging model is relatively unique and can be very advantageous for businesses. When your business charges $100, you receive $100 in payment. CardX offers all the equipment and software you need to accept payments in person, in office, and online.
CardX also handles all of the compliance requirements that go into adding surcharges to customers’ credit card statements behind the scenes. I like this because it means businesses don’t have to worry about being unable to accept certain types of cards or running afoul of ever-changing credit card regulations.
CardX features and equipment
CardX enables businesses to accept credit and debit cards. Merchants pay no fees for credit card payments. Instead, customers pay a 3.5% surcharge. However, for legal reasons, CardX cannot pass on processing costs for debit card payments to customers. So, merchants pay 1% + 0.25% for swiped debit card payments.
CardX offers a custom EMV Quick Chip card processor for in-person payments. The company also has a virtual terminal that enables you to key in card numbers in the office. The same virtual terminal can be used to accept online payments.
Is CardX Reliable?
CardX’s in-person card processor and virtual terminal are fully PCI compliant. The company encrypts all customer credit card data and stores it securely in the cloud.
I also like that CardX boasts 99.99% uptime, meaning the service can only process payments for an hour every year. As a merchant, you can therefore count on CardX’s network being available when you want to process a payment.
The company also has an A+ rating and zero customer complaints with the Better Business Bureau.
How CardX Works
CardX makes it simple to accept credit and debit card payments in person, in the office, or online. Businesses won’t pay any fees for processing credit card payments. Instead, customers pay a 3.5% surcharge. While not all customers will appreciate being charged extra for using a credit card, CardX ensures that your business gets paid for the entirety of every sale.
CardX has a somewhat different model for government agencies and educational institutions. These still pay no fees for credit card payments, but customers pay a variable surcharge based on which card they use. Customers who use basic low-fee credit cards can pay a surcharge as low as 0.75%, while those with more fee-heavy rewards cards will pay higher surcharges.
CardX offers a custom EMV Quick Chip card processor and virtual terminal for processing payments. The card processor is only available for businesses and costs $35 per month. The virtual terminal costs $29 per month for businesses but is free for government agencies and educational institutions.
Funds are transferred to your business the next day after transactions are processed.
How To Get Started with CardX
To get started with CardX, you’ll need to contact the company’s sales team. If you submit your name, email, and phone number, an agent will get in touch within a few hours. Alternatively, you can call CardX or get in touch by live chat 24/7.
When signing up, you’ll need to provide an estimate of your business’s monthly revenue. It’s up to you to decide whether you want to use CardX’s physical card processor, virtual terminal, or both. There’s no long-term contract required to use CardX, which I think is a major plus for this service.
To stay in compliance with credit card regulations, CardX registers with each credit card network under your business’s name. In addition, CardX provides all required signage to inform customers that they will be charged a surcharge for paying with a credit card at your business.
CardX Customer Service
CardX offers 24/7 customer support by phone, live chat, and email.
I called CardX and was connected to a support agent within two minutes. I also tried the chat. A chatbot asks you a few questions to start, but I was able to start messaging with a helpful live agent in under a minute.
The CardX has a basic FAQs page, but there isn’t a lot of information. You can book a demo to see how CardX’s virtual terminal works.
How To Cancel or Pause CardX’s Services
CardX doesn’t require a long-term contract, so it’s easy to cancel your service at any time. Just contact customer support to let CardX know that you’ll be canceling. If you have a physical card reader, you’ll need to mail it back to CardX.
Is There a CardX App?
CardX doesn’t have a mobile app, but the company does provide a basic online dashboard to help you monitor your business’s revenue. You can sort transactions according to custom time periods and whether they were processed via a card reader or the virtual terminal.
It’s not the most sophisticated payments reporting software I’ve tried, but it’s easy to use and handy for tracking basic revenue data.
How Much Does CardX Cost?
CardX offers different pricing models for businesses versus government agencies and educational institutions.
Businesses pay $35 per month for CardX’s physical card processor and/or $29 per month for the virtual terminal. There are zero fees for credit card transactions. Debit card transactions cost 1% + $0.25 for swiped payments or 3.38% for keyed-in payments.
Government agencies and educational institutions don’t pay anything for CardX’s virtual terminal (physical card readers are not available). There are no fees for credit card payments and the fees for debit card payments are the same as those for businesses.
Government and Education
PCI compliance fee
1% + $0.25 (debit cards)
1% + $0.25 (debit cards)
3.38% (debit cards)
3.38% (debit cards)
Monthly service fee
Note that while credit card payments are free for merchants, customers will pay a surcharge of 3.5% for all business transactions. For government agencies and educational institutions, the surcharge starts at 0.75% and varies based on the fees for the specific card that a customer uses.
How Does CardX Compare to Other Merchant Services?
Leaders Merchant Services
Zero card processing fees
Low card processing fees
High transaction volumes
From $32.95/month + 0.15%/transaction
From $69/month + $0.15/transaction
From $99/month + $0.08/transaction
Same day approval
Same day funding
CardX vs Leaders Merchant Services
Leaders Merchant Services doesn’t support surcharging. Merchants still have to pay credit card processing fees, unlike with CardX, but its rates are some of the lowest around. Leaders Merchant Services also offers business loans, loyalty programs, gift cards, and more. None of these options are available with CardX.
CardX vs PAYARC
PAYARC offers low fees for businesses with high transaction volumes. One of the key advantages of PAYARC is that businesses can get same-day funding, whereas with CardX businesses have to wait until the next business day to receive funds. Unlike CardX, PAYARC does not support surcharging.
CardX vs Stax
Like CardX, Stax supports surcharging at no cost to businesses. Stax offers a wider variety of payment tools than CardX, but its monthly subscription fees are significantly higher than CardX’s card processor and terminal fees. So, Stax may be a good choice for businesses with high transaction volumes that want the option of adding surcharges for certain purchases.
Bottom Line (Is CardX Worth It?)
CardX is a unique merchant services platform that’s leading the push for credit card surcharging. With CardX, businesses don’t pay anything when a customer pays with a credit card. Instead, the customer pays a 3.5% fee to cover the transaction cost. Customers can still choose to pay with a debit card as a no-fee option.
I love that CardX handles all of the compliance requirements behind the scenes. This makes it simple for your business to add credit card surcharges without inadvertently breaching complex regulations. The monthly fees are very affordable compared to other merchant services. In addition, CardX offers 24/7 customer support.
Overall, I’d recommend CardX for any businesses that want to pass on credit card surcharges to customers instead of paying processing fees. Whether surcharging is right for your business is a big decision, but if you decide it is, CardX makes the process easy and affordable.