Offline Payments

Offline payments allow merchants to track payments made via cash, checks, bank transfers, at the desk, ACH, postal orders or any other means besides credit cards. This method of accepting payments can be achieved by turning off auto collection. Once you have received the payment you need to manually record it in ChargeBee.

When would I use Offline Payments?

Offline payments can be used for a wide range of scenarios. Here are a few:

  1. When creating subscriptions, the merchants decide they will allow offline payment methods.
  2. A customer signs up with their credit card and they pay on a monthly basis. After a couple of months they say they do not want to be charged on their card and they will be paying by wire transfer.
  3. For plans that do not have a trial period, card details are required during sign up. If the merchant wants to let the subscription be created without the card, he can disable auto collection and create it.

Enabling Offline Payments

You can enable offline payments within a subscription. To do this, open the subscription, under “Payment Details” click on “Change” next to “Auto Collection”.

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Once you click on “Change” you will have the option to enable or disable offline payments.

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Note: By default auto collection will be “On” for all new subscriptions.

How does offline payments work?

Once you have turned off “Auto Collection”, all invoices generated for that subscription will not be collected by ChargeBee. Instead the invoice will be marked as “Payment Due”. Subscriptions that have auto collection turned off will always continue to renew regardless of the status of the previous invoices. It is the merchant’s responsibility to make sure they reconcile and collect payments for these invoices.

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Once the payment is received, you can record it by clicking on the “Record Payment” button to the right of the invoice.

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After you’ve recorded the payment, the invoice will be marked as “Paid”.

Creating an Offline Subscription

When creating a new subscription if you want the payment mode to be “Offline”, you can do that by setting “Auto Collection” to “Off”.

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This can be done via the admin console as shown above or by using the Create a subscription API attribute using the parameter “customer[auto_collection]”.

To create a subscription using the API set customer[auto_collection] = off

Facts about Auto Collection

  1. Auto Collection can be turned On/Off even if a credit card is on file.
  2. If auto collection is “On” but you receive a payment offline, you can still record the payment for the invoice that is marked as “Payment Due”. The invoice will be automatically updated to “Paid” and the auto-renewal attempt for that particular invoice will be skipped.
  3. Similarly, when auto collection is “Off” and if there is a card on file, you can still attempt to charge the card on file for an invoice that is marked as “Payment Due”.
  4. If there is a card on file but auto collection is “Off” and you attempt to make an immediate charge, the invoice generated would still be marked as “Payment Due”. No automatic charge attempts will be made even though there is a card available.
  5. Auto collection will be automatically turned on if you add card details to a subscription that does not currently have a card. Updating existing card details in a subscription that has auto collection turned off will NOT turn it on.
  6. If a subscription is going through dunning due to a failed charge attempt and if a payment is manually recorded during that time, the dunning process will automatically stop.
  7. For a subscription that has card details on file and Auto Collect = OFF, if an invoice is generated and then Auto Collect is turned on manually, ChargeBee will not automatically attempt to charge that invoice. The system will only attempt to charge on the next invoice.