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Delayed capture

Learn how to use a capture delay for point of sale payments.

When a point of sale payment is Approved it is processed in two steps:

  1. Authorisation: The card is verified with the issuer, and the funds are reserved for the transaction.
  2. Capture: The reserved funds are settled to your merchant account.

By default, these steps occur simultaneously.

Instead, you may wish to delay the capture of your payments. This reserves the funds on the shopper's card, and gives you a delay in which you can cancel the authorisation before it is captured automatically. This lets you cancel a payment when, for example:

  • A shopper changes their mind soon after purchase.
  • Store staff realize they've made a mistake after a payment is Approved.

Alipay and WeChat Pay do not support delayed captures, and payments are captured immediately.

Before you begin

Before using delayed captures, make sure that you have:

  1. Set up webhook notifications. The result of a capture or cancel request is provided asynchronously. We inform you whether this is successful with a webhook notification.
  2. Generated an API Key. You need this to cancel payments from a cash register. Alternatively, you can cancel payments from your Customer Area.

    If you are using cloud-based communications, you can use the existing API Key you use for Terminal API calls.

Set up delayed capture

By setting up delayed capture, payment requests made with your merchant account result in an authorisation. You can choose the number of minutes, hours, or days before payments are automatically captured.

You can also capture your payments manually. For more information, refer to our manual capture documentation.

To set up delayed capture:

  1. Log in to your Customer Area.
  2. Switch to your merchant account.
  3. Navigate to Account > Settings.
  4. Select a POS Capture Delay.

    We recommend selecting a delay of 2 hours.

  5. Click Submit.

Delayed capture is now set up for this merchant account, and payments will be captured automatically after the delay you selected.

If you do not wish to capture a payment, you need to cancel the authorisation for this payment.

If you no longer want to use delayed capture, select immediate as the POS Capture Delay.

Cancel authorisation

Once you have set up delayed capture, you can cancel an authorisation from:

Cancel from cash register

To cancel an authorisation from a cash register, make a JSON request specifying the pspReference of the authorisation you wish to cancel.

To cancel an authorisation:

  • Make a /cancel API call, specifying:

    • content-type: application/json.
    • x-api-key: Your API key.
    • merchantAccount: Your merchant account name.
    • originalReference: The pspReference of the authorisation being cancelled.

      This was returned in the originalResponse when you made the payment request.

    The example below shows how you would cancel an authorisation that has the pspReference 981517998282382C.

    curl -H "content-type:application/json" -H "x-api-key:YOUR_API_KEY" -X POST --data-binary '{  
      "merchantAccount": "YOUR_MERCHANT_ACCOUNT",
      "originalReference": "981517998282382C"
    }' --url https://pal-test.adyen.com/pal/servlet/Payment/v46/cancel

If the cancel request is successfully received the response contains:

  • response: [cancel-received]
  • pspReference: Our unique identifier for this cancel request.

    This is different to the pspReference of the authorisation.

Cancel requests are performed asynchronously, and we will let you know whether the authorisation is successfully cancelled with a webhook notification. If the cancel request is successful, the notification contains:

  • eventCode: CANCELLATION
  • originalReference: The pspReference of the cancelled authorisation.
  • pspReference: Matches the pspReference in the /cancel API response.
  • success: true

    If success is false then your cancel request failed. Review the reason you received in the notification, fix the issue, and resubmit the cancel request again.

Cancel from Customer Area

If you're not cancelling payments often, it may be more convenient to do so from your Customer Area.

Cancel requests can be made by the Merchant admin user, or any user with the Merchant manage payments role. For more information, see User roles.

To cancel a payment from your Customer Area:

  1. Go to Transactions > Payments, and click on the payment you wish to cancel.
    This opens the Payment details screen.
  2. In the Submit Cancel Request section, click Send Cancel.
    The authorisation is cancelled.

To learn how to cancel a payment from your Customer Area, you can also watch the following video:

Capture failed notifications

Although rare, a capture can fail after it is sent for processing. When this happens you receive a notification containing:

  • eventCode: CAPTURE_FAILED
  • originalReference: The pspReference of the authorisation.
  • pspReference: Our unique identifier for this failed capture request.

The example below is of an authorisation with the pspReference 981517998282382C, that failed to capture.

{
  "live":"false",
  "notificationItems":[
    {
      "NotificationRequestItem":{
        "amount":{
          "currency":"EUR",
          "value":1099
        },
        "eventCode":"CAPTURE_FAILED",
        "eventDate":"2019-05-20T15:30:00+02:00",
        "merchantAccountCode":"YOUR_MERCHANT_ACCOUNT",
        "originalReference":"981517998282382C",
        "paymentMethod":"mc",
        "pspReference":"991540215241817C",
        "reason":"Capture Failed",
        "success":"true"
      }
    }
  ]
}

This can occur within a few days of a capture request, and is usually due to a technical issue. We will attempt to resolve the issue, and automatically resubmit the capture request.

In most cases we can resolve the issue, and settle the funds to your account shortly after. When this happens you receive a notification containing:

  • eventCode: CAPTURE
  • originalReference: The pspReference of the authorisation.
  • pspReference: Our unique identifier for this successful capture request.
  • success: true
  • reason: Transaction Recaptured

We will not be able to capture a payment if the shopper:

  • Asked their bank to revoke the authorisation.
  • Closed their account.

You can find an overview of failed captures in your payment accounting report.

See also