Citi Merchant Services Reviews & Complaints

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How did they treat you? ▼

Pros & Cons
Pros: Cons:
E-commerce solutions offered. Complex cancellation process.
Low overall complaint rate. Hidden fees reported.
Live customer support available. Long-term, non-cancellable agreements.
No misleading marketing reported. Hefty early termination fees.
Variable pricing options. Poor follow-up by agents.


In this concise review, we delve into Citi Merchant Services, offering an insightful analysis of its services, costs, and customer experiences. We'll examine key aspects such as rates and fees, contract terms, and the scope of their payment processing solutions, including credit and debit card transactions, online payments, and more. We also highlight customer and employee feedback, exploring common complaints and overall satisfaction levels. Additionally, we touch on the company’s security measures and compliance, crucial for protecting customer data. By exploring both the advantages and drawbacks reported by users, this article aims to provide a clear, balanced view of Citi Merchant Services, helping you make an informed decision about their suitability for your business needs.

About Citi Merchant Services

Citi Merchant Services is the merchant account division of Citigroup. Founded in 1812 under the name City Bank of New York, the company did not assume the name Citigroup until the $140 billion merger of Citicorp and Travelers Group in 1998. Citigroup is currently the third-largest bank holding company in the U.S., and it boasts the world's largest financial services network. Citi Merchant Services is a reseller of First Data (now Fiserv) merchant services, so the company may not directly service its merchant accounts.

Citi Merchant Services Payment Processing

As part of Citigroup, Citi Merchant Services is a very large processor that processes debit and credit card transactions for most business types. It can also process checks and gift cards, and it does online payments through Clover Online and the Payeezy Gateway. For mobile and point-of-sale, it also utilizes the popular Clover family of products, including the Clover Flex, Clover Go, Clover Mini, and Clover Station.

Business Management Tools

The service includes access to customizable business management tools and point-of-sale systems. Businesses can customize their point of sale with over 400 apps designed to manage different aspects of their operations. These tools offer detailed reporting and insights to help businesses run more efficiently.

Online, Mobile, and In-Store Payment Solutions

Citi Merchant Services provides flexible payment acceptance options for different business models, including in-store, online, and mobile solutions. This flexibility allows businesses to accept payments in various contexts, such as at a physical store, online, or through mobile devices, catering to a wide range of customer preferences.

Security and Compliance

The platform emphasizes security, offering built-in payment security technologies to help protect customer cardholder data. This focus on security is crucial for businesses to maintain customer trust and comply with industry standards.

Citi Merchant Services Customer Reviews

Here's What Their Clients Say

Customer Reviews Summary
Total Online Complaints <10
Live Customer Support Yes
Most Common Complaint N/A
Recent Lawsuits Yes

Analysis of Citi Merchant Services Feedback

Upon review, only a minimal number of negative Citi Merchant Services reviews have been identified, with a singular complaint labeling the company as a scam. Considering Citigroup’s substantial scale, this complaint volume is notably low. It’s worth noting that certain grievances might be directed towards First Data (now Fiserv), which partners with Citigroup. Recurring issues among the complaints include undisclosed fees, unsatisfactory customer service, and binding long-term contracts accompanied by significant early termination fees. We encourage you to share your experiences with Citi Merchant Services by leaving a review in the comments section below.

Legal Actions Involving Citi Merchant Services

Our search did not uncover any class-action lawsuits or Federal Trade Commission (FTC) complaints directly aimed at Citi Merchant Services. Clients looking for non-litigious resolutions are advised to report their issues to relevant regulatory organizations.

In September 2020, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) mandated Citibank N.A. to settle a $4.5 million penalty for erasing audio recordings that had been subpoenaed in a separate investigation. Additionally, in 2022, Citigroup was implicated in a legal dispute with Loomis Sayles concerning $70 million in lost trades, which remains unresolved.

Citi Merchant Services Support Infrastructure

Citi Merchant Services provides a robust customer support system, featuring live support, comprehensive online FAQs, and chat support to promptly address and resolve business-related inquiries and issues. This proactive approach to customer service likely contributes to the low volume of public complaints.

Contact Details for Citi Merchant Services

  • (800) 430-0263 – Toll-Free Customer Support
  • (844) 741-4140 – Sales Inquiries

Additional Customer Assistance

  • Online customer support form

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Citi Merchant Services Online Ratings

Here's How They Rate Online

Online Ratings Summary
BBB Reports 7,573

No Dedicated Profile

The Better Business Bureau does not maintain a profile for Citi’s merchant services division, but the bank itself has an “F” rating with the BBB. The company is showing 6,864 overall complaints, but since this BBB profile includes complaints from users of all of Citi’s services, it is not a useful measure of the company’s merchant services division. We will therefore disregard it for the purposes of this review.

Citi Merchant Services Fees, Rates & Costs

A Closer Look at The Contract

Cost & Fees Summary
Cancellation Penalties Yes
Monthly & Annual Fees Yes
Processing Rates Variable
Equipment Leasing Yes

First Data Contract Terms

Given the close association between the company and First Data (Fiserv), the standard Citi Merchant Services contract mirrors many aspects of the standard First Data (Fiserv) contract. For businesses processing up to $50,000 monthly, the swiped rate is 2.69% plus $0.19, while the keyed-in rate is 3.69% plus $0.19. For clients exceeding $50,000 in monthly charges, the swiped rate is 2.29% plus $0.19, and the keyed-in rate is 3.29% plus $0.19. These contracts often include non-cancellable, long-term equipment leases through First Data Global Leasing. While First Data (Fiserv) can provide month-to-month agreements with no hidden fees, there have been reports of an early termination fee of $495, annual PCI Compliance fees potentially reaching $179, and variable monthly minimums. Additionally, Citi Merchant Services may enforce Liquidated Damages fees on certain accounts and equipment leases through First Data Global Leasing. For comprehensive options, we recommend business owners to review our list of the top providers of merchant services.

Virtual Terminal and Payment Gateway Pricing

In addition to its in-store payment processing services, Citi Merchant Services highlights its virtual terminal and payment gateway offerings. Utilizing Payeezy, a First Data (Fiserv) payment gateway, the company presents two plans: the Basic Plan and the Pro Plan. The Basic Plan imposes no gateway fee but charges a transaction rate of 2.90% plus $0.30, while the Pro Plan has a $19.95 monthly gateway fee but offers a transaction rate of 1.89% plus $0.23. However, how these payment gateway plans will be delivered to clients through Clover Online remains uncertain. Additional fees such as technical support fees, batch fees, and set-up fees may also apply to these e-commerce services.

Variable Pricing

The pricing and fees for businesses are likely to differ based on the agent facilitating the account setup, as well as the size, type, and tenure of the business. However, First Data’s (Fiserv) standard pricing typically does not match the offerings of the most cost-effective merchant accounts. If you possess specific insights into the standard Citi Merchant Services contract, please contribute to the discussion in the comment section below this review.

Citi Merchant Services Employee Reviews & Sales Tacitcs

Should You Work For Them?

Jobs & Marketing Summary
Uses Independent Resellers Yes
Telemarketing Likely
Misleading Marketing No
Discloses All Important Terms No

Inside/Outside Sales Team

Citi appears to utilize both its standard sales channels and a team of independent resellers to market its services. This marketing strategy is usually tied to high complaint rates for a company, but in the case of Citi, there are very few Citi Merchant Services reviews that mention deceptive sales practices by the company’s sales team. The few Citi Merchant Services complaints that are available mention nondisclosure of fees and poor follow-up by agents, but the number of these negative Citi Merchant Services reviews is much lower than would be expected for a company of this size. This compares favorably to our list of best credit card processors.

No Deceptive Quotes

In addition, Citi does not appear to advertise misleading rate quotes in its official materials. The company’s online advertising is a very limited assortment of First Data (Fiserv) promotional materials. If you suspect, however, that your Citi representative misled you about your pricing, you can double-check your monthly bill with a third-party statement audit.

Our Citi Merchant Services Review Summary

Our Final Thoughts

Citi Merchant Services is considered a better-than-average credit card processing provider. The company operates primarily as a reseller for First Data (now Fiserv), yet it has managed to maintain complaint totals that are significantly lower than other resellers of similar size under the First Data banner. This lower rate of complaints suggests that Citi may offer a more satisfactory service experience or better manage customer issues compared to its peers within the First Data network.

For business owners considering Citi Merchant Services, it is crucial to thoroughly review and understand the specifics of their contract, particularly clauses related to cancellation policies which can often be areas of contention. Additionally, comparing the pricing and terms offered by Citi with those from top-rated credit card processors is advisable to ensure they are securing the most favorable terms for their business needs.

Location & Ownership

Citigroup is headquartered at 388-390 Greenwich St, New York City, New York 10013. Jane Fraser is the CEO of Citigroup.

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Which is Most Important for You?

If you had to pick one, which quality would you say will be the most important with your next credit card processor? Tap or click your selection to register your vote:

  1. Low Transaction Fees
  2. No Monthly Fees
  3. No Contract
  4. Reliable Customer Support
  5. Quick Signup

Testimonials & Complaints

How Did Citi Merchant Services Treat You?

9 User Reviews

  • Nancy Barna

    I am so frustrated. First data had the leasing company delivered my equipment 6 weeks before I opened. A few weeks after opening I hated the clover and asked to exchange it. They said it was after the 60 day trial period. After some discussion they agree to exchange it for a more simple version. Now I am paying for both with the leasing company saying I signed an agreement for both. First data acknowledges that the first exchange was approved and the equipment was sent back. My credit has been effected and my rep doesn’t return calls. When I do talk to him I am told that my issue has been resolved just be patient. It has been 7 months and no one will help. I would never work with them again.

    This post will help: Cancelling a Merchant Account Without Paying a Fee

  • Ben Hagh

    Worst customer service in the world. Every phone call will take at least 45 minutes. Horrible service. Definitely do not recommend. Customer service is very important and their service will just ruin your day because they waste time. No interest in clients success.

  • Chaim Lebovits

    the product is decent, but the fees are a lot higher than what was agreed in writing and they basically said that they are sorry, and offered me a new agreement at a higher rate.

    Not an honest company.

  • K DeRosa

    The signed contract by our company that indicates the early termination fee cannot be produced by anyone at Citibank I have talked to. We were told by sales representative it was a 2 year period only to find out at 2 years it is now a 3 year contract! We have 20 accounts with a total cost of $10,000 to terminate, many of which were never used in addition to them taking the monthly fee without fail. No one will speak to us and negotiate the termination of services. In the end at 3 years out it will have cost us over $24,000 when we were advised to wait until the 2 years were up and in the long run pay less than the cancellation fee. Funny math and rationale any which way you look at it. I suppose our next step will be to try to contact Jud Linville!

  • Timothy Hunter

    Beware of this company and there hidden merchant fees! I stopped using there square type device 2 years ago and and have now racked up a bill 2453.00 dollars with a zero balance in that account. They will never see a penny from me as they try and create this bogus bill. Not one person could ever explain why they were charging me hi fees and what for until I received a letter today.

  • Julie

    Just a warning that their cancellation process is TERRIBLE. It took us 15 months to get out of contract. We NEVER used their service, yet they charged a fee of $50 a month per account. BE CAREFUL BEFORE YOU SIGN A CONTRACT WITH THEM!

    • amanda jacobellis

      This company is a scam. I switched and was promised next day funding like I currently have. When I realized they could not do that I wanted to cancle. I did two test charges equaling $12 and have been charged over $1600 in fees. I sent back equipment 4 months ago and have not been “Approved” tpo be refunded and then sent a $35 bill to collections. Its a night mare. You will be on hold for HOURS and then hung up on . I dont know what to do. I dont want to ruin my credit but dont want to keep paying these people, they owe me so much money. I am a small business and am going ot try and file a small claims report.

      • Josh

        Sounds like you were leasing equipment. Even if you return the equipment the lease buy back needs to be filled out by your agent. The agent than sends it to his manager to sign off on it. The manager than sends it over to the lease buy back department for aprroval. The chances of approval are 50/50. Do you know if you were in a lease?

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