Interchange Fees

Commercial Card Not Present Visa Interchange


May 14, 2019

Commercial card not present interchange refers to categories that determine the fee a business will pay for accepting commercial credit cards online or by keying in the transaction information.

These categories do not represent the lower rates available for enhanced data, which we’ll also explain in this article. Additionally, these categories only apply to commercial credit cards. They do not apply to commercial debit and prepaid cards, nor to consumer cards of any type.

Commercial Credit Card Not Present Interchange Rates

There are multiple categories dealing with commercial credit cards in a card-not-present transaction. That’s because there are different categories for business credit cards, corporate credit cards, and purchasing cards. Additionally, business cards are broken down further into “spend tiers.” There are also commercial “rewards” cards, which have their own categories.

All fees above come from Visa’s published interchange schedule.

Corporate Credit Card Commercial Rates

There are two rate categories for basic card-not-present Visa corporate credit cards.

Volume Rate Per-Transaction Fee
Corporate Card – Card Not Present 2.70% $0.10
Commercial Travel – Corporate Card 2.65% $0.10

These are the rates you’ll typically see if you accept a commercial credit card if you don’t provide extra information (enhanced data) and don’t swipe the card through a credit card machine. The “commercial travel” category only applies to transactions at eligible travel and entertainment-related businesses.

Purchasing Credit Card Commercial Rates

As with corporate cards, there are two rate categories for commercial purchasing cards. One applies generally to card-not-present transactions while the other is limited to transactions at certain eligible travel and entertainment-related businesses.

Volume Rate Per-Transaction Fee
Purchasing Card – Card Not Present 2.70% $0.10
Commercial Travel – Purchasing 2.65% $0.10

These are the rates you’ll see for purchasing cards where you don’t provide enhanced data and don’t swipe the card.

Business Credit Card Commercial Rates

Commercial business cards have the most rate categories and seem the most complex. However, the reason for so many categories is simply that Visa distinguishes by “spend tier” (that is, the spending limit) of the business credit card.

Volume Rate Per-Transaction Fee
Commercial Card Business to Business – Business Spend Tier 1 2.10% $0.10
Commercial Card Business to Business – Business Spend Tier 2 2.25% $0.10
Commercial Card Business to Business – Business Spend Tier 3 2.40% $0.10
Commercial Card Business to Business – Business Spend Tier 4 2.50% $0.10
Business Card – Card Not Present Spend Tier 1 2.25% $0.10
Business Card – Card Not Present Spend Tier 2 2.45% $0.15
Business Card – Card Not Present Spend Tier 3 2.60% $0.20
Business Card – Card Not Present Spend Tier 4 2.70% $0.20
Business Card Electronic Spend Tier 1 2.40% $0.10
Business Card Electronic Spend Tier 2 2.75% $0.15
Business Card Electronic Spend Tier 3 2.85% $0.20
Business Card Electronic Spend Tier 4 2.95% $0.20
Signature Preferred B2B 2.10% $0.10

The three basic categories (business to business, card not present, and electronic) refer to non-rewards cards, while “signature preferred” refers to commercial rewards credit cards.

Business Card Spend Tier Thresholds

As you may have noticed, Visa breaks down most of the business interchange categories by “spend tiers.” The current thresholds for those tiers are as follows.

Spend Tier 1 $0 – 19,999.99
Spend Tier 2 $20,000 – 39,999.99
Spend Tier 3 $40,000 – 99,999.99
Spend Tier 4 $100,000 and up

If the card issuer doesn’t include information on the spending limit, the transaction will automatically route to spend tier 1.

These tiers are subject to change at Visa’s discretion.

Other Commercial CNP Interchange

Note that there is another commercial CNP category, called GSA G2G. However, that category very narrowly applies to government services, including the post office. You will not see it as a non-governmental body.

In 2015, Visa eliminated two commercial categories: business to business – corporate and business to business – purchasing. You should no longer see those categories on monthly processing statements.

Commercial Card Not Present Criteria

For commercial cards, some requirements are the same across multiple categories, while other categories have unique criteria.

CNP Requirements

Applies to corporate, purchasing, and business credit cards.

To receive the rates for the “commercial card not present” category, a transaction must:

  • Be CPS qualified
  • Not pass level 2 enhanced data
  • Take place at an eligible business

Additionally, for business cards only, the transaction must use Address Verification.

CPS stands for “custom payment service” and refers to a Visa program that lists specific requirements to qualify for “CPS” interchange. For commercial card not present, the transaction must meet all the requirements for CPS / Card Not Present, CPS / E-commerce Basic, CPS E-commerce Preferred, or CPS / Account Funding.

Level 2 enhanced data refers to providing additional information at the time of sale, such as tax rate or purchase orders. If you do provide level 2 data, you will instead qualify for enhanced data interchange categories.

Certain business types are not eligible for the commercial card not present interchange category. Those include travel and entertainment industries, such as restaurants, hotels, car and truck rentals, airlines, cruise lines, and passenger trains. Those business types have their own interchange categories, such as commercial travel or business electronic.

How it’s listed on statements: You may see the commercial card not present category listed on statements with various aliases or abbreviations. Examples include:

  • COMM CNP B (for “commercial card not present business”)
  • COMM CNP P (for “commercial card not present purchasing”)
  • COMM CNP C (for “commercial card not present corporate”)

Note that his is not a full list of possible category names. Processors may use different names at their discretion.

Commercial Travel

Applies to purchasing and corporate credit cards.

The “commercial travel” interchange categories have relatively few requirements. For a transaction to qualify, it must:

  • Take place at an eligible business
  • Be CPS qualified

Eligible businesses in this case refers to those in the travel / entertainment industry. That includes restaurants and hotels, car and truck rentals, and passenger transportation, such as airlines, cruises, and railways.

Eligible CPS programs include: CPS / Restaurant, CPS / Car Rental (both card-present and card-not-present / ecommerce), CPS / Hotel (both card-present and card-not-present / ecommerce) or CPS / Passenger transport (both card-present and card-not-present / ecommerce.)

How it’s listed on statements: On a monthly processing statement, you may see commercial travel categories abbreviated, such as COMM T.

However, processors are not required to use specific terminology to label interchange. You may see other names for the same category.

Commercial Card Business to Business and Signature Preferred B2B

Applies to business credit cards.

Commercial card business to business or Signature Preferred B2B interchange will apply when a transaction:

  • Takes place at an eligible business
  • Meets requirements for an eligible CPS program
  • Does not include level 2 data

If the card used is a signature preferred card and meets other criteria, it will qualify for the signature preferred B2B interchange category. Otherwise, it will go to Commercial Card Business to Business.

For the purposes of this B2B commercial interchange category, the eligible business list includes traditionally business-to-business industries. It includes:

Cleaning, Landscaping, and Construction Services

Cleaning, Maintenance, and Janitorial Services (7349)
Construction Materials (5039)
Florist Supplies, Nursery Stock and Flowers (5193)
Landscaping and Horticultural Services (0780)
Paints, Varnishes and Supplies (5198)
Special Trade Contractors (1799)
Specialty Cleaning, Polishing and Sanitation Preparations (2842)

Computer and IT services

Computer Maintenance, Repair and Services (7379)
Computer Programming, Data Processing, and Integrated Systems Design Services (7372)
Information Retrieval Services (7375)

Equipment and Furniture

Commercial Equipment (5046)
Electrical Parts and Equipment (5065)
Industrial Supplies (5085)
Medical, Dental, Ophthalmic and Hospital Equipment and Supplies (5047)
Office and Commercial Furniture (5021)
Photographic, Photocopy, Microfilm Equipment and Software (5044)
Plumbing and Heating Equipment and Supplies (5074)

Media and Creative Services

Commercial Photography, Art, and Graphics (7333)
Miscellaneous Publishing and Printing (2741)
Motion Picture and Video Tape Production and Distribution (7829)
Typesetting, Plate Making, and Related Services (2791)

Misc. Products and Supplies

Books, Periodicals and Newspapers (5192)
Chemicals and Allied Products (5169)
Durable Goods (5099)
Nondurable Goods (5199)
Piece Goods, Notions, and Other Dry Goods (5131)

Professional Business Services

Accounting, Auditing, and Bookkeeping Services (8931)
Advertising Services (7311)
Business Services (7399)
Employment Agencies and Temporary Help Services (7361)
Management, Consulting, and Public Relations Services (7392)
Professional Services (8999).

Uniforms and Commercial Clothing

Commercial Footwear (5139)
Men’s, Women’s, and Children’s Uniforms and Commercial Clothing (5137)


Metal Service Centers and Offices (5051)
Motor Freight Carriers and Trucking (4214)
Testing Laboratories (Non-Medical Testing) (8734)

If your business is not in one of those industries, this category will typically not apply. If your business is in one of those industries, you’ll still need to meet CPS requirements. Eligible CPS programs include CPS / Retail, CPS / Retail Key Entry, CPS / Small Ticket, CPS / Card Not Present, CPS/ E-commerce Basic or Preferred, CPS / Account Funding.

How it’s listed on statements: Commercial card business to business interchange categories may be listed on a statement as COMM B2B B, for “commercial business to business, business.”) However, as with other categories, processors can use whatever names they’d like.

Business Card Electronic

Applies to business credit cards.

The business card electronic category actually has the same requirements as commercial travel services. That is, it must take place at an eligible travel and entertainment business and it must be CPS qualified.

The only difference is that it applies to business cards. The exact interchange category will depend on the spending limit of the card used in the transaction.

Eligible businesses include:

  • Car and truck rental (3351, 3441, 7512, 7513)
  • Hotels (3501, 3833, 7011)
  • Passenger transportation, including airlines, cruise lines, and railways (3000, 3299, 4112, 4411, 4511, 4722)
  • Restaurants (5812, 5814)
  • Travel agents (4722)

This is not an exhaustive list of businesses or merchant category codes. If you think you’re misclassified, you’ll need to work with your processor.

As for the other requirement, there are several CPS “programs.” Meeting the criteria for one of the following programs is a requirement for Business Card Electronic.

  • CPS / Restaurant
  • CPS / Car Rental
  • CPS / Hotel
  • CPS / Passenger Transport

For the purposes of this interchange category, meeting criteria for either the card present or card not present / ecommerce versions of those CPS programs is acceptable.

Note that Visa lists this category as an Electronic Interchange Reimbursement Fee (EIRF) category, which is typically a downgrade. However, in this case, it is not a downgrade. Rather, this EIRF category is the “target” interchange category.

How it’s listed on statements: You may see COM ELEC B for “commercial electronic business.” However, keep in mind that there’s no standardization to processing statements. Your processor may choose to use another name to list this interchange category.

Target, Enhanced, Downgrades

When it comes to commercial cards, it’s important to understand the multiple categories that may apply.  “Target” interchange refers to the basic interchange category for which a transaction should qualify. In other words, if the transaction meets basic requirements, that’s the interchange category you should see. With target, you didn’t provide any additional details to qualify for a premier interchange category, but you also didn’t do anything wrong to slide down to a penalty interchange category. The categories in this article are “target” interchange.

The “premier” interchange categories are called enhanced interchange, while the penalty categories are called downgrades.

Is it important to qualify for enhanced interchange?

Yes, if you take a lot of commercial cards. Enhanced interchange categories require more information from you at the time of sale, but they also come with lower rates than target interchange categories. As a business owner, you know how quickly processing fees add up. You can keep costs as low as possible by securing enhanced interchange rates on your commercial transactions. Fortunately, there are services and software that streamline the process of providing enhanced data.

Of course, not all transactions will be eligible for enhanced interchange pricing. But if you provide enhanced data correctly, you’ll reduce your processing fees.

Keep in mind that the rates noted in this article are just the interchange cost. There are still additional fees (such as processor’s markup) on top of these rates. Since commercial transactions are more expensive than consumer transactions, it’s important to lower the interchange cost through providing enhanced data. That will help you achieve lower overall fees.

Commercial card transactions and enhanced data can be confusing. In fact, it can be considered a form of specialty processing. Fortunately, we’ve got you covered. Check out our guide to B2B transactions and enhanced data.

Or, if you’re a CardFellow member, give us a call to discuss enhanced data and interchange optimization for your business. Our processing experts will work with you to identify the right solution.

Ben Dwyer

BY Ben Dwyer

Ben Dwyer began his career in the processing industry in 2003 on the sales floor for a Connecticut‐based processor. As he learned more about the inner‐workings of the industry, rampant unethical practices, and lack of assistance available to businesses, he cut ties with his employer and started a blog where he could post accurate information about credit card processing. As the blog gained in popularity, Ben began directly assisting merchants in their search for a processor. Ben believes in empowering businesses by providing access to fair, competitive pricing, accurate information, and continued support. His dedication to transparency and education has made CardFellow a staunch small business advocate in the credit card processing industry.

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