LevelUp Credit Card Processing 2023: Reviews & Complaints

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Company Overview

LevelUp is a one-of-a-kind credit card processing service that entered the merchant services industry in mid-2011. The company is based in Boston, MA, and has established itself as a unique alternative in the world of mobile payments. LevelUp was acquired by online and mobile food ordering platform GrubHub in September 2018, but the company appears to be maintaining its own branding for the time being. It has yet to be seen how the acquisition will affect LevelUp’s rating on a long-term basis, but for now this review will cover the company’s current operations.

Article Summary

Before we dive in, here’s a short summary of what we’ll cover:

  • LevelUp’s various payment processing services.
  • LevelUp offers a unique payment processing app that uses QR codes and which encourages return customers.
  • The company’s only complaints are more about the app than their services.

LevelUp Payment Processing

LevelUp has created an app that allows businesses to accept credit and debit card payments with a method unlike any found with traditional merchant account providers. First, the service is marketed to consumers as a way to securely store payment card information in order to pay businesses using unique QR codes that display on the screens of their mobile devices. This technology allows consumers to connect with LevelUp clients for the purpose of earning rewards for loyalty and first-time visits when they pay using the app, all of which is supported directly within the application itself. For businesses, LevelUp touts their service as a better way to engage customers than traditional card acceptance methods because the app gathers data and offers insights about their customers’ visitation and purchasing patterns. The information can then be used to bring customers back again through LevelUp’s customizable loyalty program and engagement tools. Additionally, this data can be used to attract new customers by tailoring incentives for first-time visitors.

A Secure Supplement

Currently, LevelUp is not intended as a replacement for a traditional merchant account. Instead, the service is more of a marketing supplement that also serves as an electronic payment acceptance method. Businesses that wish to join LevelUp’s program simply download an app for their iPhone or Android device and complete a short setup process. Additionally, LevelUp can supply clients with an optional countertop docking station and Android smartphone app to act as the method for reading the customers’ QR codes. The company takes responsibility for the storage of payment data, so there is little to no risk for the client or the consumer.

Customer Engagement Services

LevelUp offers features for customer engagement that go beyond simple transactions. They include loyalty programs and promotional campaigns designed to retain customers and encourage repeat business.

Data Analytics and Reporting

LevelUp provides merchants with detailed analytics and reporting tools to track payments, customer behavior, and other key performance indicators. This data can be vital for making informed business decisions.

Order Ahead and Digital Ordering

One of the standout features is LevelUp’s “Order Ahead” functionality. This allows customers to place orders in advance using the LevelUp app, enabling them to skip the line and improve their overall experience.

Integration Capabilities

LevelUp is designed to be compatible with a variety of point-of-sale systems and can be integrated into existing hardware and software solutions. This makes it more convenient for businesses that are already set up with certain POS systems.

Regulatory Compliance

LevelUp ensures that its payment processing adheres to standard industry compliance norms, including PCI compliance, making it a secure option for businesses concerned about data breaches.

Location-based Services

The company offers location-based services to provide offers and promotions to customers when they are in proximity to a store, thereby encouraging in-store visits and purchases.

Customizable User Experience

LevelUp allows for customization of the mobile app interface, offering businesses the option to align the look and feel of the app with their brand identity.

Location & Ownership

Seth Priebatsch is listed as the founder and CEO of LevelUp, whose headquarters are 1 Federal St, 6th Floor, Boston, MA.

LevelUp Pros and Cons


  • Has A Unique Payment Structure
  • Few Complaints
  • Offers Built-In Insights and Rewards Program


  • May Not Be As Cheap as the Best Providers

Table of Contents

LevelUp payment processing
LevelUp is an interesting marketing addition for merchants

LevelUp Customer Complaints & Reviews

Here's What Users Think

Complaint Summary

Total Online Complaints
Live Customer Support
Most Common Complaint
Recent Lawsuits

Low Complaint Total

We have found fewer than 10 negative LevelUp reviews on the usual online forums, and none of the available complaints accuse the company of being a scam or ripoff. The issues cited in the available complaints include technical issues and poor customer service, but there is no clear theme. The company’s reviews in the App Store and Google Play marketplaces are overwhelmingly positive. If you have your own LevelUp review to make, please do so in the comments below.

LevelUp Lawsuits

In 2017, LevelUp was sued by CardFree, a rival service. The suit alleges that LevelUp created accounts with access to CardFree’s platform for mobile orders which gave the company access to CardFree’s clients. With that access, the suit alleges that LevelUp falsely advertised that it could offer services comparable to CardFree’s in order to steer business away from its competitor.

LevelUp Customer Support Options

LevelUp also assigns a dedicated account manager to each client. This way, businesses have a specific person to contact for questions or service issues. Additionally, the account managers can help clients set up loyalty and incentive programs as well as give tips on the types of offers that work best for attracting more business. LevelUp’s website lists a customer service phone number and customer service form and these channels appear to perform at a level comparable to top processors for customer service.

LevelUp BBB Rating and Report

Our Better Business Bureau Profile Assessment

BBB Summary

BBB Reports

Over 20 BBB Complaints

LevelUp has been accredited with the Better Business Bureau and is currently showing a rating of “F” due to 30 complaints filed against it in the last three years. Only 15 of these 30 complaints were resolved by the company to the satisfaction of the merchant. The remaining 15 were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or received no final response.

What Merchants Say

The company also has 2 informal reviews posted to its BBB profile, which are negative. The most recent review mentions unexpected charges and poor customer support:

I just want to warn people about Levelup. I had two charges on my bank debit card for a product and service that I never bought from them. Finally, my bank gave me two credits. The is a local burger place that we frequent twice per month. They have a rewards program that provides a free something after you spend $100. However, the program is administered by none other our buddies at Levelup. Try getting credit!!!! Try communicating with Levelup!!!! They tell you that “we will have a service representative get in touch with you”!!!! Seriously, they are playing such a scam on the public. We just stopped believing that the burger place cares, because they don’t

An “A” Performance

It is worth noting that the BBB LevelUp complaints are largely from dissatisfied consumers using the app and do not necessarily reflect on the client’s experience, so business owners should not solely rely on the BBB to assess the company’s trustworthiness. In light of the company’s complaint total and resolution ratio, we have adjusted the BBB’s rating to an “A”.

LevelUp Fees and Rates

A Closer Look at the Contract

Cost Summary

Cancellation Penalties
Monthly & Annual Fees
Processing Rates
Equipment Leasing
No (One-Time Fee)

LevelUp Pricing

LevelUp offers a month-to-month service agreement with a flat rate for transactions of 1.95% and no cancellation fee. There is a one-time hardware cost of $50 for a LevelUp scanner or $100 for a LevelUp tablet. The company also offers free hardware that clients can rent but deducts a $250 fee from their accounts if the hardware is not returned. We have not found LevelUp reviews that mention excessive transaction fees or monthly fees from LevelUp. LevelUp’s loyalty programs are promoted through custom campaigns designed by the client, and the company makes money by charging 25% of redeemed incentives offered in each loyalty campaign allowing them to keep a low, flat transaction fee. LevelUp also shields clients from 100% of chargebacks.

Competitive Terms

Overall, these terms seem to be very affordable, even compared to especially cheap merchant account options. Additionally, the loyalty program fees are tied to LevelUp’s performance, which is a much more competitive deal than those found through a standard provider.

LevelUp Jobs and Employment

Hiring Standards and Ethical Marketing Assessment

Key Points

Uses Independent Resellers
Misleading Marketing
Discloses All Important Terms

No Misleading Marketing

LevelUp uses no deceptive advertising or rate-quoting tactics that are apparent to this reviewer. The company appears to primarily market its services using its own outside sales agents (as opposed to independent agents) as well as other business development and marketing methods.

No Sales Complaints

In addition, there are no client or consumer complaints that mention deception or misrepresentation by either LevelUp or one of the company’s agents. We have assigned the company an “A” rating at this time, but always recommend that merchants seek a third-party statement audit if hidden fees are suspected.

LevelUp Review Summary

Our Final Thoughts and Opinions

LevelUp offers an interesting credit card processing service at a very reasonable cost. The ability to collect data and get insights into customer visitation and buying patterns can be useful to many businesses, especially restaurants. Additionally, the reward and incentive programs potentially offer a competitive advantage over other businesses that do not participate. Some readers may prefer a traditional mobile credit card processing app, but LevelUp stacks up well as a fully capable one-of-a-kind service.

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Customer & Employee Reviews

What Others Are Saying About LevelUp

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20 Responses

  • Don Bryant

    I have been charged 37.95 by level up & have no idea what for or who the ….they are!

  • Rodney Julun

    At the worst possible time, they snag you in a web of lies and deceit. Take your last dollars to complete deals to give you a $750 cash deposit for FREE (not at all) and run commercials and adds that speak to the contrary. Saying you can get the deposit immediately . Only after signing up for deals, realizing you cant get it and looking to make a complaint do they tell you that some deals make take a week to show up (past the deadline for dropping them before they deduct more money, others will show in 72 hrs, etc… They and others like them and the sites that “guide you” to them should all be barred.

  • T


    Is LevelUp legitimate?
    LevelUp has been accredited with the Better Business Bureau and is currently showing a rating of “D-” due to 16 complaints filed against it in the last three years. 6 complaints were filed in relation to billing and collection disputes, 2 were delivery issues, and the remaining 8 were due to product or service issues. I worked for them and was treated poorly even though I was an exemplary employee.

  • thomas

    I was also charged a fee of the same as everyone else never heard of these people or company

    • Suzanne H

      No biz of yours

      I agree and I’m not willing to pay 50$ to find out whether or not this company will correct the year valid on my card it claims incorrect that is usually Millennial Corporate America behavior. No thanks and who sold you my personal info a**holes?!!

  • Brandy Hickman


    I was charged $37.91 for a purchase I have no knowledge of whatsoever.

  • Gwendolyn E Williams

    I am also a victim of this Levelup fraud. I don’t know how my info was accessed, I have heard of this company nor do I know has stolen my information. I pray that however is the culprit will be exposed, revealed & removed.

  • Donna Hilton

    Donna Hilton

    I just found where $37.97 was taken out of my account and I have NOT ordered ANYTHING from them! THIS IS BS !

  • Danny b.

    I am a victim of this level up fraud BS, someone has gotten hold of my information and has started a account with a merchant and I am very pissed, how can someone start a account and you do not get more info from them.

  • Elizabeth Pflaumer

    I was just hacked, I am a single mother of 4 boys who lives in a very strict budget. Woke up this morning o a charge of $88.28 on my debit card. I have never used your services and the anguish of having to fight to get my money back now is sending me into a panic attack. I cannot pay my bills with that much money illegally removed from my account

  • Wanda C. Thomas

    My account was hacked 3 times with LEVELUPKFC USNY. I live down south never heard of. How can someone just use your card without verification? I want my money put back in my account along with overdraft fees.

  • Stephanie Brown

    I have 2 charges from Level up on my debit card that I did not make! I have no account so I have no idea how someone could possibly get my information. Now I have to wait for my bank to try and get my money back from you people. Maybe you should add more features to make sure that people can not steal your information. I have never and will never use this service

  • Cindy Lorenzo

    I was charged $50. without my knowledge. Never heard of this place before. I hope it gets reversed.

  • Carl H

    I just got a call from Chase that my credit card was used fraudulently. The transaction says LevelUp followed by a restaurant that is not even in our area. Glad Chase caught it, but I have no idea how my card was compromised.(and I have never heard of your company).

  • Joe Andrews

    I use Level Up for Dunn Brothers coffee in Minnesota. While I can pay in store using the app, the order ahead feature and the find-a-store feature have not worked for several months. I made them aware of the problem and they let me knwo it was a “recognized issue,” nothing has happened beyond this. SO, two fo the 4 (?) features for Dunn Bros coffee on the Level Up app don’t work and no fix FOR OVER TWO MONTHS. How is this okay? I have followed up a couple of times and gotten the same response: “Yes, ‘were aware….” Um. So fix it. I waited two months before going online like this to complain…hoping they’d get it fixed. Nope.

  • Lori D Fulton

    Be very careful. This company charges your card simply by the email address you have listed with the company they partner with. I use my email account for many of my bosses purchases and found a load of charges that were not mine simply because they said the same email was on the account. This is very shaky and I will not do business with any company using level up.

  • Kathleen East

    I downloaded the Tropical Smoothie Cafe app that uses Level App payment. Tropical Smoothie had some cash register issues that day. I ended up paying for 2 transactions through the app. I detected the error within a half-hour & spoke with the manager, who said I’d have to contact Level Up. I sent Level Up a website submission explaining the error AS WELL AS a dispute note through email specifying which amount was incorrect. A week later, they credited the SMALLER amount, which was the correct charge. Don’t use them. Their CS sucks…you can’t call them. Only web & email. Bottom line, Level Up gets to decide how much you pay. Uninstalled app.

  • Sophie S.

    I have tried applying to LevelUp for over a month now and have received little to no help regardless of the countless (and I really mean countless) support emails I have sent. They have wasted close to a month and a half of my time before informing me that they do not want to work with my business because I don’t fit their demographic of “restaurants,” even though they have a huge drop down list of vendors they accept (my field included). I have worked with both PayPal, Intuit and Square in the past and have to say I have been treated far better in every aspect by these bigger companies. I am frankly disappointed and frustrated by the way I have been treated so unprofessionally by LevelUp. If I had been contacted within a timely manner I may not feel so strongly, but the fact that I had to reach out on multiple occasions only to be ignored leaves me feeling aghast. To be honest, I am not sure how they run a business dealing solely with restaurants (though we all know that is not the case). I have found the entire process to be a ridiculously time wasting experience, and I can say with confidence that LevelUp has lost a high-grossing customer that will never utilize their business after having realized what little respect they have for their customers’ time or energy.

  • Michael Bancewicz

    I have been one of Levelups biggest fans. Some times the merchants equipment is down. Worse though is i have been unable to use to to an error message showing up with my qr code and levelup fails to respond. I am going to try to reach SCVNGR and see if they can help. Conceptually this is a win win program, but with out customer service I am going to campaign against them.

  • Ash

    I’m curious who their processor is – do they effectively act as a merchant of record?


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