What Card Reader is Best for My Event?

Auctionpay Suite

When faced with what Auctionpay card reader technology to adopt for your fundraising event, absolutely do your own due diligence, or talk to a representative to walk you through your options. You do not have to make this decision by yourself!

A fantastic benefit event can be spoiled for donors when they are forced to stand in a long check-out line slowed by manual credit card processing. The wait may even cause them to think twice before attending another benefit for that organization. On the organizational side, staff and volunteers must take the time to manually reconcile post-event payments and call donors whose credit charge payments were not accepted before they can relax. Auctionpay’s secure credit card terminals or card readers and payment processing can eliminate those issues.

Auctionpay terminals or card readers can streamline the cashiering process at benefit events. Whether it’s a gala, auction, luncheon or golf tournament, Auctionpay can create a better event experience for guests, staff, and volunteers. With this technology, guests can choose to pre-register their card at check-in and not think about it again for the rest of the evening, knowing that their check-out and item pick-up will be faster. If a guest chooses not to pre-register their card, they can still pay via a credit card at the end of the event. Staff and volunteers know Auctionpay automates many of their check-in and check-out tasks, so they can be more welcoming and relaxed with event guests.

Organizations can choose between three types of Auctionpay equipment—terminals, USB or mobile card readers:

The Mobile Card Reader is a small card-swipe device that plugs into the audio port of a tablet. Mobile Card Reader requires the Greater Giving application (App) downloaded from either the Apple iTunes Store or Google Play. (See our Blog Post on the Greater Giving Tablet App.)

The Card Reader (USB) is a card-swipe device attached to a mouse pad which plugs into a USB port of your laptop or PC.  USB based Card Reader can be used on any laptop or desktop computer.

Terminals are used at check-in and check-out as stand-alone equipment or can be synced with Event Software. Auctionpay Terminals are best fit for an event without any computers or tablets.


What is the difference between Mobile Card Readers and Card Readers (USB)?
The Auctionpay Mobile Card Reader is a small card-swipe device which plugs into the audio port of a tablet. The Auctionpay Card Reader (USB) is a card-swipe device attached to a mouse pad which plugs into a USB port of your laptop or PC. You may only use the Mobile Card Reader in conjunction with the Greater Giving application (App) downloaded from either the Apple iTunes Store or Google Play.

What is the difference between the credit card readers and the terminals? 
The USB Card Readers are an alternative to using terminals for taking credit card payments. The card reader is used in conjunction with Greater Giving Event Software at check-in and check-out, eliminating the data exchange (sync) processes and improving the efficiency and speed of guest registration and check-out.

How many card readers or terminals do I get?
The number of devices sent to your event is based on the number of bidders you anticipate for your event. The general rule of thumb is 1 device per 100 guests. At a minimum Greater Giving will ship 2 card readers or terminals to your event.

Do I rent card readers or terminals, or do I own them?
Greater Giving clients do not purchase card readers or terminals. We will work with you well in advance of your event to reserve the appropriate number of terminals and training material for your use, and ship them to arrive prior to your event, in enough time to train volunteers and staff before event night. You ship those devices and materials back to us within four business days after your event.

What training is provided?
In addition to the training DVD and videos already posted on our Website, the packing box also includes paper documentation showing how to set up either the card reader or terminal system and details of use. Greater Giving’s Support team is also available to assist you with any questions.

5 questions to ask when choosing what card reader tool is best for you:

  1. Does our venue have a solid wifi connection
  2. Do we plan to use Tablets, Laptops or a mix of the two for Check In and Check Out?
  3. Are there any wifi “dead spots” in the area we plan to do Check In or Check Out?
  4. Will my donors want to pre register credit cards before the event?
  5. How many Check In and Check out “stations” do we plan to offer?

2 Responses to “What Card Reader is Best for My Event?”


    Are these devices the Unimag Shuttle & Magtech Mini? Is there any possible way you can provide an Imprinter in case the system goes down & we need to run imprint the card to show it was present?

    • Dathan Montes

      Hi Chelsea, our magnetic card readers are similar to the models you mentioned. We appreciate your inquiry, for more technical questions, please reach out to support@greatergiving or call 1.800.276.5992.


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