Understanding the Visa FANF Fee: Rates, Examples, and More

Visa’s fixed acquirer network fee (FANF) is a fee that most businesses that accept credit cards cannot avoid. More specifically, most businesses accepting Visa credit or debit cards are going to pay this fixed acquirer network fee. Unlike other assessment and processing fees, the FANF does not have a set cost, so it can be a bit tricky to understand.

You have nothing to worry about regarding the FANF, even if you’re the owner of a business accepting Visa credit and debit cards, because we review everything you need to know about FANF below. Let’s dive in!

What is FANF?

FANF stands for “fixed acquirer network fee.” Visa imposes this fee on all businesses accepting Visa cards, be it through card-present or card-not-present transactions. The cost of this fee is calculated based on a number of different factors, including sales volume, business location, and processing methods. Visa began assessing merchants and implementing FANFs in April 2012. Since then, there have been a few changes in regards to this fee.

FANF Rates and Costs

As a merchant, the FANF you’re charged depends on many factors, including whether your business utilizes card-present and/or card-not-present payment methods. Below explains how Visa assesses FANFs on card-present and card-not-present transactions.

Card present

pile of credit cards on wooden table representing FANF fee

Card-present transactions include in-store transactions in which the credit or debit card’s magnetic stripe is swiped in the credit card reader or the chip is dipped into a reader with EMV technology. Additionally, contactless credit or debit card transactions utilizing NFC technology are also card-present transactions.

If your business accepts only card-present transactions, Visa assesses the amount of FANF you’re charged on two factors: the number of business locations you own and whether you’re a high-volume business. Additionally, it’s important to know that Visa applies a FANF to each business location, thus your FANF increases as the number of locations of your business increases.

The table below shows the FANF costs for card-present businesses:

Number of LocationsFANF Per LocationHigh-Volume FANF Per Location
4,001 or more$65.00$85.00

High volume

In regards to high-volume FANF fees, as showcased in the third column above, businesses with high volume are classified by their merchant category code (MCC). An MCC is assigned when you open your merchant account. Below are some of the MCCs Visa considers high volume for the purposes of FANF assessment:

  • Airlines (30003299, 4511)
  • Auto Rentals (3300 3499, 7512)
  • Car and Truck Dealers (5511) (4411)
  • Department Stores (5311)
  • Discount Stores (5310)
  • Drugstores (5912)
  • Electronics Stores (5732)
  • Family Clothing stores (5651)
  • Furniture Stores (5712)
  • Grocery Stores and Supermarkets (5411)
  • Lodging (35003999, 7011)
  • Movie Theaters (7832)
  • Service Stations (5541, 5542)
  • Tire Stores (5532)
  • Warehouse Stores (5200, 5300)
  • Wire Transfers (4829)

Not high volume

When processing card-present transactions, a monthly sales volume under $200 does not qualify for a FANF.

A fixed dollar amount from the table does not apply to businesses with monthly volumes of $200 – $1,250. Instead, businesses in this category pay a FANF of 0.15 percent of total volume.

Card not present

Card-not-present transactions include in-store and online transactions in which the credit card information is manually entered instead of having the card read by a physical terminal. This includes situations in which a customer gives their credit card information through phone or email correspondence, which is then manually entered through a virtual terminal. All eCommerce sales, in which, for example, a customer enters their card information through a checkout page, are categorized as card-not-present transactions as well. These transactions incur Visa’s card-not-present FANF rates.

Below are card-not-present FANFs based on monthly volumes:

Monthly VolumeMonthly Fee
$1,250 – $3,999$7.00
$4,000 – $7,999$9.00
$4,000 – $7,999$15.00
$40,000 – $199,999$45.00
$200,000 – $799,999$160.00
$800,000 – $1,999,999$450.00
$2,000,000 – $3,999,999$1,000.00
$4,000,000 – $7,999,999$2,000.00
$8,000,000 – $19,999,999$4,000.00
$20,000,000 – $39,999,999$8,000.00
$40,000,000 – $79,999,999$16,000.00
$80,000,000 – $399,999,999$45,000.00
$400,000,000 or more$70,000.00

As with card-present rates, the FANF is not applicable to businesses with monthly sales volume under $200. For volumes between $200 and $1,249.99, you’ll pay 0.15 percent of the volume instead of a fixed dollar amount.

How to Find FANF on Your Merchant Statement

The FANF, along with other fees applied by Visa, may appear on a business’s merchant statement if they’re charged under the interchange pricing model or tiered pricing model. It’s likely listed under the name Visa Fixed Acquirer Network Fee, Fixed Network CNP Fee, High Volume Card Present Fee, Visa Network Fee, FNF Fee, or other similar names.

You may not see the FANF fee listed at all if you use a flat-rate credit card processor. But if you accept Visa cards, you are still being charged the fee.

How is the Visa Network Fee Calculated?

businesswoman looking over merchant statement to find visa FANF fee

As previously mentioned, Visa’s FANF is not a set cost. In order for Visa to calculate the FANF applicable to your business, they consider the number of business locations you own and your monthly sales volume. If your business is in the high-volume category, you’ll pay different fees than businesses that aren’t in such category.

For businesses that have a lower volume of sales, the biggest factor is the payment method of the transaction: card present or card not present. Below are two examples to help clarify these circumstances.

Example 1: card present

Let’s say you own a business that sells construction gear in Seattle. What you should keep in mind is the number of business locations you own and the volume of sales of your business. If you have one to three shops, each will be charged a FANF of $2.00. If you have four to 10 shops, Visa charges $2.90 per shop.

However, if you’re a high-volume business, such as a grocery store, Visa imposes different fees. High-volume businesses with one to three shops pay $2.90 per shop. Meanwhile, for high-volume businesses with four to 10 shops, the fee increases to $4.00 per shop, and so on. For more information, refer to the above table.

Example 2: card not present

Let’s say you’re an online shop for home crafts and all your transactions are done online. If you have a monthly sales volume within the $1,250 to $3,999 range, Visa would apply a monthly FANF of $7.00.

Exceptions to FANF

Charitable organizations classified as MCC 8398 are exempt from Visa’s FANF. It’s not entirely clear how Visa drops the fee, but it appears that the FANF is charged upfront, then a rebate is later provided.

Other than these charitable organizations, businesses with a monthly volume of $200 or less are also not charged Visa’s FANF.

How the FANF Changes Over Time

In April 2015, Visa made two significant changes to the fixed acquirer network fee. Their goal was to make the fee less “fixed.” To be more precise, the change was that FANF no longer applied to entities that had less than $200 in volume during a given month. Another major change was that the FANF would be 0.15 percent of gross sales in months when the volume is between $200 to $1,249.99.

Ways to Reduce Fees

Since FANF is an assessment fee, there’s no room to negotiate. Additionally, in order to not lose their own money, payment processors must charge the base amount Visa sets. If you want to reduce fees, consider the payment processor’s markup. Dive deeper into the marked-up fees that the processor charges over the fees set by Visa and card-issuing banks.

Summing Up the Visa Fixed Acquirer Network Fee

Visa’s fixed acquirer network fee, or FANF, is an assessment fee charged to every business that offers Visa cards as a payment method. It’s calculated by the number of locations and sales volume if you’re a business that runs card-present transactions. For card-not-present transactions, Visa calculates the fee only by monthly volume. However, charities, as well as businesses with less than $200 of monthly sales, are exempt from this fee.

Despite FANF and other assessment fees, credit card processing at your business is a smart decision in that offering consumers more payment methods only opens up your consumer base.

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