All Collections
Yoco Card Machines
Payments & Management
Handling the “Reserved” SMS from banks
Handling the “Reserved” SMS from banks
Updated over a week ago

There's a lot of confusion around the 'Reserved SMS', which is why we're here to translate some of the bank-speak, and tell you more about what's happening in the payment process when your customers get this notification.


When your customer receives an SMS that says 'Reserved for purchase @ Yoco *your business*' - it does NOT mean that their transaction was successful. The money has NOT left their bank yet - it has just 'reserved' the funds IF the sale is successful.

The payment is successful only when your Yoco gives the 'Approved' screen! Please always wait for this message before confirming your sale or handing over goods.

The bank information explained

When your customer taps, swipes or inserts their card for payment, they automatically receive an SMS or email from their bank, saying that the funds are 'RESERVED, WITHHELD or PENDING.' This is the customer's bank letting the customer know that there is enough money in their bank account to process the transaction. If not, the payment is declined. This is NOT a message about whether funds have been taken out of the customer's bank account.

In other words, banks 'reserve' funds but if the transaction fails, the 'reserve hold' is cancelled, and the money is available in the customer's bank account again. This is often the point at which a customer believes they have been charged for something, when in fact they still hold the funds in their account.

What to do if you customer insists they were charged?

  1. Check your Sales History here if the transaction was actually processed.

  2. If the payment was processed, and you'd like to offer a refund, find out more here.

  3. If your Sales History doesn't reflect the payment, but your customer insists they were charged, they will need to email Yoco a copy of their bank statement (showing the amount) so that we can support in solving their query.

Did this answer your question?