Understanding card transactions

Pending transactions

Pending card transactions in Westpac One or CashNav

If a card transaction is listed as pending on your online transaction list, these transactions are processed using the Mastercard or Visa system and means that the retailer is either:

  • requesting to withdraw funds from, or 
  • checking the details of

your Westpac Mastercard or Visa card. This can include Westpac credit cards, Westpac Debit Mastercard cards or Westpac prepaid cards. There could be a number of reasons that the transaction is listed as pending, see below for the common ones.

Common pending transactions

  • When you ask a retailer to withdraw funds from your Westpac Mastercard or Visa card, they send a message to Westpac for us to authorise the payment value. This authorisation will reduce your available balance immediately.

    The retailer may not process it, or bill it to your account straight away. It can take up to 2-3 days to be processed via the Mastercard or Visa systems. Until this happens, the transaction will show as pending on your transaction list.

  • Sometimes a retailer – like a pay-at-the-pump service station, a booking agency or a hotel - may place a temporary hold on your account for a deposit or a security bond, commonly known as a hold. The retailer is checking that you have enough money in your account to pay for goods (like that petrol, or the restaurant bill at the hotel). The retailer will estimate a value for the hold and then bill you for the final amount later. 

    This hold will reduce your available balance immediately. On occasion, the hold amount and the final amount that you authorise can appear on your transaction list together. The hold amount will disappear within 5 business days, and only the final amount will remain as deducted from your account.

    Be aware that if you use your Westpac Debit Mastercard or prepaid card overseas or online to pay a deposit or security bond, this may place a hold on what can be a large amount of money. This will have an impact on the available balance of your account – especially if the hold remains to temporarily reduce your available balance and the final authorised amount is also deducted. We recommend that you use your Westpac credit card in these instances.

    If both the hold and the final amount remain on your transaction list for over a week, you should contact us.

  • The last common pending transaction occurs when a retailer is verifying your card account details. To do this, they will place a hold on your account for a small amount – say $1. They do this to confirm that your card details are correct before they process the full transaction amount. 

    This hold will reduce your available balance immediately, and sometimes the hold amount and the final amount that you authorised can appear on your transaction list. The hold amount will disappear within 5 business days, and only the final amount will remain as deducted from your account.

Other things you should know about pending transactions
    • Sometimes a pending amount can be for a different amount when fully processed. This is the case for foreign currency transactions. This is firstly because the pending value doesn’t include our Foreign currency fee when initially authorised by the retailer. Secondly, the pending value is held against one exchange rate, and then when the transaction is fully processed it can be at a different day’s exchange rate.

    • The retailer’s name can appear different when it’s a pending transaction compared to the final processed transaction. This is due to the setup of that retailer. Sometimes you might see a head office, and then the franchise – or sometimes it’s a street address, and then the name of the retailer when fully processed.

    • Pending transactions do not appear on your full card statement or your debit card’s linked account statement. Only the final processed amount will appear. This includes the statements that you might download or print out from Westpac One.

    • As mentioned above, sometimes a held amount and the final amount that you authorised can appear on your transaction list. Whilst both are held against your available balance, this does not mean the retailer has charged you twice. The held amount has not been processed.

      However, if the hold amount does not disappear from your transaction list within the week, you should contact us.  
EFTPOS vs Mastercard or Visa
EFTPOS transactions

In New Zealand we have a domestic payment system known as Electronic funds transfer at point of sale – commonly known as EFTPOS.
You will automatically be using EFTPOS when you use your Westpac ATM/EFTPOS card, or if you have your Westpac transaction or savings accounts linked to your Westpac credit card or Westpac Debit Mastercard and you select either the CHQ or SAV options on the terminal.

Mastercard or Visa transactions

We also use the Mastercard or Visa systems. Your Westpac ATM/EFTPOS card is not used for these transactions. Your payment will automatically go through either of these systems when you use your Westpac credit card , Westpac Debit Mastercard or Westpac prepaid card to:

    • pay using contactless
    • purchase something using the CREDIT button
    • purchase something online
    • use your card overseas, at a retailer or for a cash advance (this is when using your Westpac Debit Mastercard or prepaid card you would need to select the CREDIT button)
    • make payment over the phone, where you provide your card details, or
    • where you’ve set up a regular payment to a company with your card details.
Refunded card transactions in Westpac One and CashNav

Refunded card transactions

  • When you return goods to a retailer, and they refund you through the Mastercard or Visa systems , the pending refund will not show in your online transaction list. 
  • Only once the refund is fully processed by the retailer will it show. 
  • Refunds can take up to 5 days to be processed by the retailer.