At Skyfuel we pride ourselves on having great customer service and generally we don’t get many complaints. However, one of the complaints we receive on a regular basis is the preauthorisation process used at our retail sites. Therefore, we would like to explain the process of purchasing fuel via credit card from one of our 24/7 retail sites.

Fuel purchased via credit card is conducted using a pre-authorisation process. This means that once you estimate the purchase value your bank will place those funds on hold pending the actual purchase. This reduces your credit limit available whilst the purchase takes place. Once the purchase is completed at our retail site our software sends a message that advises the bank that the transaction is complete, however, the bank will release the funds held on the credit card in accordance with their own policy.

Some things can go wrong such as:

  • A zero dollar transaction. If the pump is authorised and fuel not dispensed, the pre-authorisation amount will be reserved until released from the bank. Lifting and dropping the nozzle or taking too long to start dispensing fuel from the pump may cause this.
  • A big difference between the pre-authorisation amount and the amount dispensed. If a large pre-authorisation is requested but only a small amount of fuel dispensed it may raise a potential fraud alarm at the bank and result in delays to the pre-authorisation being released.
  • A pump fault, power cut or other problem may result in a zero dollar or a big difference between the preauthorisation
    and amount dispensed.
  • Frequent exceeding of your credit limit, slow payment of your due balance or account activity that may raise an
    alarm at your bank for further investigation.
Releasing of pre-authorisations is the responsibility of your bank. Contact your bank with any questions.

It is important to understand that this is not a Skyfuel policy or controlled process, it is completely out of our hands. The Bank determines the number of days the cardholder‘s funds remain on hold. As a guide, the funds may be held between 4 and 10 days for Australian banks but may be longer for overseas banks.

In addition to this, we also find that a customer may not follow the prompts on the point-of-sale display. We have had customers enter their pin number when the system is asking for the preauthorisation amount, therefore placing several thousand dollars on hold on your card. Please make sure you follow the prompts on the display.

If you find this process is not suitable for you, we do suggest making an application for a SkyFuel Carnet Card where you are able to make fuel purchases and be invoiced at a later date.

Our retail sites accept credit cards 24/7 and 99% of the time we do not have any problems.

One of the problems we do come across is the point of sale terminal may not allow credit card sales to be processed if the internal printer is not working correctly. We conduct regular maintenance on the system to keep them operating correctly, however, there are 3 main ways the system will not accept credit cards.

  1. Printer out of paper
  2. Printer paper jammed
  3. No internet
The paper rolls typically last up to 3 months and we always keep back up paper available, so its pretty rare for the printer to be out of paper.
The printer can jam and cause problems and this is also very rare. The one problem we do find is that some customers that use the system do not wait for the paper to self cut and they pull on the paper receipt. This causes a jam on the paper cutter rendering the system unusable. Please do not pull on the paper receipt. If it does not cut or issue a receipt, please call us. Under current consumer law we must provide a receipt for sales over $75.00 therefore the retail sales terminal will not work if it can not provide a receipt.
One way to avoid this is to have a Skyfuel Carnet card as this will work even if the printer is offline. This is due to the fact that the fuel is purchased on an account and we provide you with an invoice for your purchase via email at the end of the month.