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TransFirst Review

TransFirst is a credit card processor founded in Colorado in 1995, and a registered ISO and MSP of Wells Fargo Bank. It was purchased by payment processor TSYS in 2016.
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TransFirst’s Services

TransFirst provides a variety of processing and payment services, including point of sale, internet, mobile, phone, electronic check, gift and loyalty cards, and prepaid cards. You’ll be able to choose your preferred method of accepting payments depending on your specific business needs. If you’re taking cards in person, you can check out the point of sale systems for taking cards in once place or the mobile solution for businesses on the go. Ecommerce (online) businesses will benefit from internet-capable card acceptance.

The company gives you the ability to accept most major credit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, Diners’ Club, and JCB. You can also process PIN-based debit cards and EBT. If you run a gas station or convenience store and accepting fleet cards if a priority, TransFirst can also set you up to take Wright Express and Voyager fleet cards.

Equipment and Software

TransFirst provides multiple equipment and software options for your business’s processing needs, including:

  • Traditional countertop point of sale terminals
  • Wireless terminals
  • PIN pads
  • Credit card swipers
  • Printers

You can choose models from several popular brands, including Verifone, Magtek, Ingenico, Epson, and Equinox.

TransFirst also offers credit card processing software PC Charge Pro. You can install PC Charge Pro on your computer and optionally add a USB Magtek card swiper to eliminate the need to handkey transactions. In addition to transaction processing, PC Charge Pro offers recurring billing options, file import and export, and a customer database.


TransFirst has a variety of tools to help keep transactions secure.

Online Fraud Protection

Through Transaction Express payment gateway, TransFirst offers Address Verification Services and CVV2 credit card identification. With address verification, you’ll be able to ensure that the billing address on file with the credit card company is the same as the address provided by the purchaser. Matching the CVV code ensures that the customer actually has the card they’re using to make a purchase. Fraudsters that obtained card data through data breaches may not have access to this code, helping prevent unauthorized purchases.

Data Breach Protection

TransFirst’s Data Breach Security Program helps you with audits as required whenever a breach is suspected and helps with fines from card replacement, credit monitoring, and other expenses in the event of a confirmed breach. You can read more in our article on data breach protection.

PCI Compliance

TransFirst has a page of its website dedicated to PCI compliance resources, including PCI scan information to identify possible vulnerabilities, the self-assessment questionnaire, PCI audits, information on PCI compliant terminals, and a section of PCI compliance myths.


TransFirst offers live customer support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Additionally, the company’s website provides a FAQ, mobile processing support, Transaction Express gateway support, terminal support, and information for how to read your merchant account statements.

TransFirst Rates and Fees

TransFirst publishes one rate for each type of processing it offers, which likely indicates a tiered pricing model. Tiered pricing is usually not transparent, and can result in higher costs than necessary.

TransFirst has different rates for the different services, as follows:

Rates apply for swiped cards.

  • Rate: 1.69%
  • Per transaction fee: $0.19
  • Monthly service fee: $9.95

Internet and ecommerce
Rates apply for transactions processed over the internet, such as by online shopping cart.

  • Rate: 2.27%
  • Per transaction fee: $0.24
  • Monthly service: $9.95

Rates apply for transactions that are swiped using a wireless processing terminal.

  • Rate: 1.69%
  • Per transaction fee: $0.19
  • Monthly fee: $9.95
  • Monthly wireless fee: $15.00

Rates apply for transactions processed using a touch tone phone.

  • Rate: 2.99%
  • Per transaction fee: $0.24
  • Voice authorization fee: $0.75

Check processing and ACH
Rates apply for transactions processed by charging a customer’s checking account.

  • Setup fee: $0
  • Monthly cost: $0
  • Per transaction fee: $0.25

Mobile swipe
Rates apply for transactions swiped through a card reader on a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet.

  • Rate: 1.69%
  • Per transaction fee: $0.19
  • Monthly service fee: $9.95

Minimums may apply to some accounts. Additional fees may also apply. Rates are not guaranteed to be up to date or what your business is eligible for.

Keep in mind that these published fees may not be a full breakdown of all the costs. You may end up paying more. To get an up-to-date, fully disclosed quote (no hidden fees) from TransFirst to see how it compares to other options, you can request one directly through your CardFellow account.

Is there a contract?

TransFirst’s standard contract is a 3-year term with automatic renewal. To avoid automatic renewal, cancellation must be submitted in writing 90 days before the end of your contract. Early termination fees apply, and vary by contract. Early termination fees can range from $250 to $500 or more.

TransFirst offers a 30-day risk-free trial during which a cancellation fee doesn’t apply. The company’s site also claims to not charge cancellation fees if you go out of business.

TransFirst Reviews 

Reviews for TransFirst are largely negative, and indicate some of the typical problems seen in the payment processing industry are present with the company’s accounts and customer service.

TransFirst reviews and rating with the Better Business Bureau

TransFirst has been accredited with the Better Business Bureau since 2009 and currently has an A+ rating. They have 111 complaints lodged with the BBB in the past 3 years. Complaints allege unauthorized bank debits, deceptive or fabricated contracts, unhelpful customer service, and dishonest sales practices.

The BBB found that complaints were either resolved or that TransFirst made a good faith effort to resolve the complaint but that the customer did not find the business’s solution satisfactory.

In addition to the complaints, there are 10 negative TransFirst reviews on the BBB’s site. Reviews corroborate the complaints, indicating difficulties getting problems resolved, deceptive or expensive pricing with hidden fees, and equipment downtime.

TransFirst reviews with Yelp and Ripoff Report

Yelp shows 6 one-star reviews for TransFirst, with reviewers saying the company lied about contracts, charged them expensive early termination fees, and took unauthorized funds.

Ripoff Report also lists negative reviews for TransFirst, with 40 complaints. Reviewers allege very high termination fees, hidden fees, refusal to release merchants’ funds, lying about terms of contracts, and deceptive and dishonest salespeople and practices.

Reviews at the TransFirst website

TransFirst’s website includes a section for testimonials and has an option for existing customers to submit a review. Testimonials on the site include the business name of the reviewer. Reviews praise TransFirst’s customer service, rates that help businesses, and quick applications.

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Posted by CardFellow on Mar 09, 2016


TransFirst doesn’t have the most stellar reputation in the processing industry, but things may change a bit now that the company has been purchased by TSYS.