I can see a transaction is double charged. One is showing as pending and other as completed and deducted from my account both. There is no practical way to reach you guys as in app chat is useless. Standard message with no response ever. Not sure if I should risk my money like this.
Could it be that you used the card at a hotel? It would explain this. It is how hotels sometimes handle the settlement.
Check-in: hotel asks for a deposit and blocks 100 on a card.
Check-out: hotel bill is 350. Staff asks if they should use the card they have on record. One says “yes, sure”. An additional second charge of 350 appear as pending.
After a while, the first 100 change mysteriously into the full bill (350), while the other second 350 are still pending. One ends up with 700 blocked in total. But the second charge will be reverted after a couple of days. Last time it took 10 working days – almost 2 weeks – for the money being released again.
An unfortunate side effect with prepaid cards.
Same thing happened to me with amazon.co.uk. Topped up card by amount of purchase. Pre-authorisation came through immediately. Three days later the actual transaction was attempted without the pre-authorisation having been removed. Result: transaction declined for insufficient funds.
The upshot seems to be: I have to top up the card by twice the purchase amount (or make sure that the balance on the card is sufficient). Revolut holds pending transactions for 7 days and they seem to have difficulty understanding that pre-authorisation X is the same transaction as actual attempt to collect payment Y.
It is not Revolut who is holding anything here. It is how the merchant handles this. The merchant and their payment processor have control over this. Also with the double charge: it’s the merchant’s responsibility to handle this correctly. If they don’t, you might see a double charge, and one of them being reverted after time.
Hang on. Revolut most certainly is holding something, if I understand correctly. The sequence of events is this:
- 8 March: Put €40 on card and order item from amazon.co.uk
- Pre-authorisation on Revolut card appears immediately in the full amount of £35+ (€40)
- 11 March: Purchase declined due to insufficient funds.
- Still 11 March: Top up Revolut card with an additional €40 and instruct Amazon to try again.
- Same day: purchase goes through.
Today is 12 of March. There’s €40 I put on my card that I have no access to. Where is that money? Somebody has it. If I understand pre-authorisation, no money is transferred to the merchant. It is simply blocked on the card. So the money must be with Revolut. If I put €40 on my card that I should have access to but can’t in fact spend, then, I’m sorry, but Revolut is holding my money. They have it to invest or whatever they want and I won’t get it back for another 3 days. And they won’t be paying me any interest on it either.
Explain to me what’s wrong with what I’ve said.
Pre-Authorizations are “released” by the merchant, not the card issuer. It can be forced, or they simply expire. Until they do, the money is blocked.
If a merchant “claims” a former pre-authorization or then settles the final payment as a separate, second transaction, also depends on the merchant.
Here’s a copy of my online chat with Amazon (name changed to screen name and numbers redacted):
Here’s a copy of the chat transcript you requested:
Initial Question: On 8 March you issued a pre-authorisation for £35.88 to my card ending in XXXX (authorisation code: XXXXXX). On 11 March, that transaction went through. The pre-authorisation has not been cancelled and is blocked on my card. The card issuer says that releasing the block is something the merchant must do. Please do so.
10:29 AM GMT Meena(Amazon): Welcome to Amazon prime! My name is Meena. Am I chatting with banjopotato?
10:29 AM GMT banjopotato: Yes
10:29 AM GMT Meena: Hello banjopotato
10:29 AM GMT banjopotato: hello
10:30 AM GMT Meena: I am sorry to hear that the authorization was not cancelled yet.
Let me check the order page and help you banjopotato. Do you mind providing me the order number just to make sure I’m looking at the correct one, please?
10:31 AM GMT banjopotato: XXX-XXXXXX-XXXXXXX
10:31 AM GMT Meena: Thanks fr the order number banjopotato
10:32 AM GMT Meena: Upon checking , I see that the payment was confirmed for the order and the order has entered the last stage of the dispatch process and it will be delivered to you banjopotato
10:33 AM GMT banjopotato: Yes. But the pre-authorisation block has not been cancelled by amazon.co.uk. Those funds are now blocked on my card even though the item has been paid for. Amazon.co.uk needs to cancel that pre-authorisation or indicate to the card issuer that it is no longer needed.
10:35 AM GMT Meena: Yes I understand your point we will release the pre authorization for the order and it will be credited back to your payment card sooner banjopotato. It will be credited in your back account within 7-10 business days and it is just an estimated time and may be credited sooner than that .
10:36 AM GMT banjopotato: That is not acceptable. I have paid for the goods. There is no reason for the block to be on my funds. It needs to be removed now. The funds have already been blocked for 5 days (2 days since purchase was made). I need you to cancel pre-authorisation XXXXXX
10:38 AM GMT Meena: our bank won’t inform us why they’ve declined a charge, they simply reject the charge when we seek approval. And Amazon has automatically released the charge from our end and the bank has blocked it and we have provided the authorization code to you and you can provide the code to the bank banjopotato
10:39 AM GMT banjopotato: And they are telling me that amazon.co.uk is the only one that can release the block, not them. One of you is wrong. I have no way of knowing which one.
10:41 AM GMT Meena: We have provided the authorization code for the funds from our end so we have released it banjopotato. And the bank is blocking it , so you can provide authorization code to them and check this.
10:41 AM GMT banjopotato: Which bank is blocking it? Your bank or my card issuer?
10:43 AM GMT Meena: The funds were blocked by the card issuer, so please contact the card issuer and ask them to release it using the authorization code.
10:43 AM GMT banjopotato: When the elephants fight, the grass gets trampled.
For the record, I did provide Revolut with the pre-authorisation code and the funds are still blocked.
Did this chat happen today? Just give them some time. I don’t know how many parties are involved here. Revolut does not process payments, that’s something the payment processor has to deal with.
Chat was today. Pre-auth code was given to Revolut on Sunday.
All I know is Revolut have my funds and have directed me to amazon and amazon have directed me to Revolut who have directed me to amazon. Wash, rinse, repeat.
Since Revolut are the beneficiaries (free money for 7 days!), I’m inclined to blame them.
Well, there is only so much customer support can do on Sundays. Not all departments work on the weekends.
And: the payment was never settled. So Revolut has no access to it. It’s “claimed” and locked in a payment processing network designed by credit card companies. They are making all the rules about how pre-authorization, and then the later settlement, is working.
Also, Revolut can’t do anything with your money. They do not have access to it. They are not a bank, they are not making any interest on customer’s funds.
Just relax, this could have happened with any card issuer, not just Revolut.
Thing is, it is there for a reason, I’m working for a similar company to Revolut, but the company itself is in the US, anyways, the hold amount is there because the merchant put that there, and Revolut will not release it to you, (also it’s not in theirs, it’s the merchants,till it’s claimed/expired/released back by the merchant)because the merchant could still take it from your account as per the authorisation, hence it would go out of the pocket of Revolut, as you could just close down your account after you’ve withdrawn all of the money from a certain hold, that was released back without proper docs.
Just to be clear, €40 being held on my card is nothing more than a minor inconvenience. However, the fact that things like this can happen make the card a lot less useful to me than it otherwise might be. I’m not confident enough in Revolut’s customer service to hold larger amounts of money on it and the fact that any purchase—even substantial purchases—might (at random) require twice the amount of money to be lodged onto the card in order to avoid them being declined is a real stumbling block.
On the debit card attached to my current account, this isn’t a problem since my salary is deposited there. And on credit cards, all it does is effectively and temporarily decrease your credit limit. But on this card, used in the way I’m using it (top-ups immediately before purchases), the effect of this is to require twice the amount on the card.
Well, they all use the same technical infrastructure, follow all the same rules as defined by the big credit card networks that actually run the technical platform. They also designed the process. Most of the times, you won’t notice it. But in some circumstances, this might happen, like you see it now. It’s not like this happens with every card payment. Many things come together, starting with the merchant causing it.
I know what I am talking about. I booked a hotel room via a hotel’s website. The hotel authorized the money and blocked it. When I checked out and was presented with the final bill (it was exactly the same price as pre-authorized, and the hotel guy asked me if he should charge the same card that I used on the website), the payment was done as a second payment and I had to wait until the pre-authorization expired.
I use Revolut since 2015 on a daily basis and it happened just once.
Every prepaid debit card comes with the same limitations. If this bothers you so much, Revolut might not be the right service for you. The situation might change once they obtained their banking license.