Why EMV Cards are Slower for Approvals, and How That’s Changing

Blog|Payment Cards|Payment Processing|Payment Processing Security

One of the complaints I sometimes hear from merchants who switch over to the EMV cards is that it slows down their transactions. That can be a big deal if you’ve got a line at the checkout counter. The EMV cards need a little extra time to complete the addition of the extra level of security.

A Few More Steps

Processing an EMV card is actually an 8-step process to complete the transaction. Let’s take a look at the steps involved:

  1. The customer places their EMV card into the terminal slot.
  2. The merchant enters the purchase amount which is then sent to the credit card processor (CCP).
  3. Your CCP then transmits the transaction details to the card issuer.

OK, so that’s all pretty standard stuff. The only difference in the process so far is the customer placing the card in the slot instead of swiping it. The next part is where the transaction can slow down.

  1. The card issuer then transfers an authorization code back to the CCP.
  2. The CCP relays approval along with the authorization code to the merchant.
  3. Merchant receives approval and completes transaction.
  4. The terminal then places the unique transaction code onto the card chip.
  5. The customer removes their credit card from the terminal slot.


The approval process and authorization code transmission can both be slowed down based on whether your CCP provides the fastest connectivity speed and the latest software to manage the data transmissions quickly and securely. A few seconds now can stop a big headache later on. The good news is the credit card industry is working hard to accelerate transaction speeds while maintaining the higher level of security incorporated into the EMV cards.


Customer Service is My Priority

My philosophy is I can only provide the best customer service by offering the most up-to-date equipment and fastest processing systems. I’ve made it a point to ensure my merchants experience the same wait times with EMV cards as they do with the magnetic strip cards. If you want to learn more about how I can make your EMV transactions faster, contact me at 877-379-9748, or visit www.swypit.com.