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2016-12-23

Credit card usage in the travel industry: assets and sorrows

Data security plays an important role not only for the paying customers, but also for the payment providers. Read here how Acomodeo handles this problem

Credit cards are a popular payment method throughout the world. With the increasing use of mobile, the trend towards digital billing and networking is growing continuously. Credit cards are a popular payment method in business and private life. In Germany there are around 25 millions in use and in other countries even more.

Visa Card and Mastercard are the most common credit card providers in the world; with American Express (Amex) and Diners Club, they share almost the entire European credit card market. They are the preferred cards for business trips because they offer high liquidity advantages and simplify travel expense accounting.

Since the end of 2015, EU regulation requires a clear distinction between credit cards for business and private use. Employees who own a corporate credit card are no longer allowed to settle their expenses via private bank accounts. In the future, corporate cards must access the company account.

Consumers are getting more and more used to the digital environment and therefore the demand for secure payment solutions is also increasing. But - despite the wide selection of credit cards in the travel sector - many apartment houses haven’t arrived in the digital age yet.

Bank transfer is the most frequently offered payment solution

An analysis of our database shows that bank transfers are the most frequently offered payment solution by apartment providers, at 95%. The ability to pay by Amex, Visa or Mastercard is available in 83% of cases. Payments with Diners reduces to 40% and only 15% offer the option to pay by AirPlus and JCB.

Customers want online travel agencies to offer a wide range of payment methods for apartments and easy payment processes. That’s why we have been looking for the best solution to meet these needs. Data security plays an important role here, because people are worried about theft and misuse of credit card data when using electronic payment methods.

Security gaps do not only harm paying customers but also the trust in suppliers and travel agents

To protect sensitive credit card data, the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI Standard) has been developed by the major credit card providers, which includes binding rules concerning the transfer of data. These regulations apply to all distributors, payment service providers and acquirers who process, store or forward credit card data. In particular, corporate customers must comply with the highest international safety standards when handling credit card data. Acomodeo meets this requirement with its PCI certification and corresponding payment service providers.

The challenge

Our challenge was to introduce a payment system that met the highest security standards as well offering a classic payment processor for all types of transactions. We also decided to introcue payment tokenisation to add an additional layer of security.To do this we worked with the Swiss service provider, Datatrans, as an interface between our software and the individual payment providers, suppliers and customers. This infrastructure gives our customers and apartment providers the flexibility to use of any combination of payment solution. We are also able to fully cover the transfer of the payment. For key accounts the payment methods can also be used on a recurring basis.

AcoPay offers a fast, user-friendly solution as well as a comprehensive range of payment options with the highest security standard to our customers.

If you'd like to find out more, then please get in touch.

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