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Pending Charges

Why is this transaction marked as pending?

When you make a card purchase, it’s usually authorized right away, but it can take some time for the transaction to finalize.

The exact timeframe depends on the merchant, since they finalize their transactions in batches. It's common for them to do this once a day, but some merchants batch their transactions more infrequently, resulting in the transactions that stay pending longer.

Usually, the pending charge will disappear when the settled charge is processed, but occasionally, it will linger. This happens when the merchant creates a new transaction when they run the batch, rather than finalizing the existing authorization. The pending charge will drop off on its own, usually after a week or so.

What happens if the charge is canceled while it's pending?

If the merchant cancels the charge while it’s still pending, they’ll remove it from their list of transactions to finalize. They don’t usually have a way to remove the pending hold, but it'll drop off in time (usually after a week or so).

Why is the pending charge more (or less) than I paid?

You might notice a pending transaction for more or less than the amount you paid. This typically happens at restaurants, hotels, and gas stations—essentially, anywhere the final amount of the charge might change after your card is swiped.

If the pending transaction is more than you expected, it probably has something called tolerance, added to estimate the total charge. When the transaction settles, tolerance disappears and the transaction will change to reflect the amount you actually paid.

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