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Get Started with Service Charges

Create a service charge to help offset any operational or overhead costs. You can create service charges from your online Square Dashboard and then instantly add a service charge to any purchase during checkout from:

You can also assign taxes to a service charge to have taxes automatically taken out during checkout. Service charges can be percentage-based or a fixed amount that won’t change based on the purchase cost. When you add a service charge during checkout, both you and your customer will see the charge as a line item on the transaction.

Note: You will need to upgrade to the newly redesigned Square Point of Sale app and run the latest version of the app to use the Service Charge features. Follow our simple guide to get started with the latest version of Square Point of Sale.

Set Up Service Charges

You can create a variety of service charges from your online Square Dashboard and apply them on the Square POS app, Square Invoices app or Square Online orders.

Service charges can be set up to be manual or variable. Manual service charges are a fixed percentage or dollar amount that is the same amount regardless of the order it is applied to. Variable service charge enables you to specify the exact dollar amount or percentage at the time of checkout.

To create and edit service charges:

  1. Go to Account & Settings from your online Square Dashboard

  2. Click Business > Service charges > Create a service charge

  3. Name your charge and choose a percentage-based or fixed price service charge, then enter the amount of the charge. 

  4. Enter the amount of the charge, or leave the service charge amount blank to enter it at the time of the sale.

  5. Select the location where the charge applies and add any applicable taxes.

  6. Click the toggle if you want to automatically apply this charge to Online orders, then select which fulfilment types you want the charges to apply to.

  7. Click Save.

Automatic service charges only apply to Square Online orders fulfilled via Pickup, Delivery or Self-Serve Ordering. You must also have item-level taxes enabled to apply automatic service charges for these fulfilment types. Learn more about tax settings in Square Online.

Apply Service Charges

Once you create a service charge from your online Square Dashboard, you can manually apply it to transactions from your Square POS app, Square Invoices app or Dashboard. You can add service charges to orders that include items, custom amounts or both. You cannot apply a service charge multiple times on the same sale or invoice.

From the Point of Sale app

Service Charge POS App Apply

  1. From the Square POS app, tap Library.
  2. You can search for service charges by name, or tap the Service Charge category.
  3. Choose all of the service charges that apply to the sale.
  4. Tap Review Sale to check the details of the transaction.
  5. Tap Charge.

Service Charge POS App Receipt

The service charge will show as a line item on your customer’s receipt and in your transaction report details.

From the Square Invoices app

Service Charge Invoice App Apply

  1. From the Square Invoices app, tap create a new invoice.
  2. Tap Add a line item to apply a service charge.
  3. Select any pre-existing service charges you want to apply to the invoice.
  4. Fill out the rest of your invoice and send it as you normally would.

Service Charge Invoice App Receipt

The service charge will show as a line item in your customer’s invoice and receipt and in your report details.

From Invoices on Dashboard

Square Dashboard - Square Invoices - Add Service Charge - EN

To apply service charges during the invoice creation process from your online Square Dashboard:

  1. Go to Payments > Invoices.
  2. Select Send an invoice and fill in your invoice details.
  3. Under ‘Line items’, select Add service charge.
  4. Create a new service charge or choose an existing service charge. Indicate the amount of the service charge and add sales tax if needed.
  5. Click Add to apply the service charge to your invoice.
  6. Complete the rest of your invoice and send it to your customer as you normally would, then click Send.

For Square Online Orders

Square Dashboard - Account Settings - Add Service Charge - EN

Any service charge can be automatically applied to Square Online orders fulfilled via Pickup, Delivery or Self-Serve Ordering.

  1. Go to Account & Settings from your online Square Dashboard.
  2. Click Business > Service charges > Create a service charge.
  3. Name your service charge – this name will be displayed on customer receipts and order summaries.
  4. Choose a percentage-based or fixed price service charge, then enter the amount of the charge.
  5. Select the location where the charge applies and add any applicable taxes.
  6. If applicable, toggle on Automatically apply this service charge to Square Online orders, then select which fulfilment types you want the charges to apply to*.
  7. Click Save.

*Note: Item-level taxes must be enabled for these fulfilment types before you can set up automatic service charges.

For Square Online Checkout

  1. From your online Square Dashboard, create a service charge by going to Account & Settings > Business information > Service charges > Create a service charge.
  2. Then, access the service charges created within Square Online Checkout through Online Checkout > General > Service charges > Add service charge.
  3. Select the service charges you would like to automatically apply to Square Online Checkout purchases.

Note: Currently, service charges enabled in Online Checkout settings only apply to “Collect a payment” and “Accept a donation” links

  1. Click Save.

FAQ

What is the difference between a service charge and a surcharge?

A service charge is an extra fee added to a sale to cover any additional expenses outside the cost of the initial goods being sold, such as bagging fee or delivery fee. Service charges can be a single flat fee or based on a percentage of the total sale amount.

A surcharge is a fee added to the bill when a buyer pays with a credit card to cover the cost of payment processing fees. This varies from a Convenience Fee, which covers the costs of accepting payment outside of a merchant’s usual channel (e.g. by phone instead of in-store), no matter what payment method is used.

When would I use a service charge?

Common use cases include a bag fee, delivery fee, or administrative fee.

Can I use this feature to apply a credit card surcharge?

Card surcharge permissions may vary by regulatory or card network rules. Visa and Mastercard updated their rules for Canada on October 6, 2022 to allow merchants to apply a surcharge on credit card payments. In terms of surcharge enablement, Square is looking to launch a feature to enable credit card surcharges for merchants in the future, but does not support surcharging functionality at this time. Square’s service charge feature should not be used for surcharging as this feature does not comply with network rules’ surcharging requirements. Merchants are responsible for ensuring compliance with applicable network rules, including updated network rules related to surcharging.

What does variable mean?

A variable service charge as a feature allows you to edit the percentage or dollar amount during checkout.

Can I make a service charge non-taxable?

Yes. You can create a non-taxable service charge, meaning the charge won’t be taxed at checkout. You can also assign one or more taxes to a charge, the taxes will be taken out during checkout.

What devices can I use to create and apply a service charge?

You can create service charges from your online Square Dashboard via a web browser on your mobile device or computer. After you create a service charge, you can apply it to a purchase on the Square Point of Sale app, Square Invoices app, Square for Retail app on iOS or via Dashboard.

Service charges are not yet available for Square Appointments, Square for Restaurants, Virtual Terminal or Afterpay transactions.

Can I use service changes with the Square for Retail app on Android devices?

Not at this time. We hope to expand availability in the future.

How many service charges can I apply to one sale?

You can apply multiple individual service charges, but you cannot apply a single service charge more than once. For example, you can apply a pickup service charge and a bag service charge to the same sale, but you can’t apply the bag service charge more than once to that same sale.

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