PRIME Payment Processing

How do I understand payment processing pricing?


There are three types of pricing structure for payment processing:

  1. Tier Pricing
  2. Flat Rate
  3. Interchange Plus


Tier Pricing is priced based off the four types of cards:

  1. Debit (Regulated and Unregulated)
  2. Qualified (Personal and chip read)
  3. Mid-Qualified (Hand keyed/Online)
  4. Non-Qualified (Business/Corporate)


Typical pricing for Tiered rates:

        – Debit = 1.35% plus $0.15

        – Qualified = 1.8% plus $0.15

        – Mid-Qual = 2.25% plus $0.15

        – Non-Qual = 3.25% plus $0.15


Typical pricing for Flat rate:

         – Debit = 2.75% – 2.9%

         – Qualified = 2.75% – 2.9%

         –  Mid-Qual = 2.75% – 2.9%

         –  Non-Qual = 2.75% – 2.9% plus a surcharge of an average of .50% Total = 3.25% – 3.4%


Interchange Plus Pricing:

Interchange is the buy rate of cards given out by Visa, MC, Discover and Amex.  In most cases this is the best pricing that a merchant can be set up on. There are dozens of different Interchange rates, they vary from .05% to over 3.5%. 

Example; if a merchant was set up on Interchange plus .35% (35 basis points). If merchant accepted a customer’s card that had an Interchange (cost/buy rate) of 1.15%, the merchant would pay 1.5% on that transaction. If the Interchange was .05%, the merchant would pay .40% on that transaction. If the Interchange was 2.8%, the merchant would pay 3.15%. 

No matter what the Interchange (cost/buy rate) of any card taken the merchant will pay .35% above the Interchange. There is also a per item fee, it’s typically $0.10 – $0.15 per item.


At PRIME Payment Processing we offer Interchange Plus Pricing as the best way to save you money and help you to understand your pricing. Give us a call so we can do an analysis for you.


Kelly Devenish Mountain Man