September 2, 2021 - More Canadian colleges and universities are adopting additional payment methods beyond cash and cheque, as the demand for more options continues to rise. Many Canadian campuses now provide the ability to pay tuition by credit card with TouchNet’s PayPath solution, saving hundreds of thousands of dollars per year in processing costs. Since being introduced to the Canadian market in 2017, TouchNet’s PayPath solution has resulted in millions of dollars overall in annual savings to Canadian institutions.
Students and their families are used to using payment methods such as debit and credit due to their ease of use and convenience and want this same opportunity to pay for campuswide services including tuition. International students wanting to attend Canadian institutions also expect more payment options such as debit and credit. The challenge for the institution is the costs to accept these payments.
Why Higher Ed in Canada Doesn’t Predominately Offer Credit
Adoption of credit has been slower in Canada, in part, because the cost of processing has increased drastically in the past 15 years. This has forced colleges and universities that want to provide more payment flexibility and an improved student payment experience to either build their own systems, or to use free or inferior software solutions. Unfortunately, this leads to manual reconciliation, increasingly complex and siloed payment environments, often making PCI compliance unattainable. Meanwhile, many institutions remain wary of moving beyond cash and cheque, mostly due to the high cost of processing fees.
Outside of credit, online debit has also become more popular and secure for merchants. Post-secondary schools are looking to transition away from accepting just cheque and cash, and to do so, alternative methods have become more common, such as Pre-Authorized debit, bank wires, and online credit and debit transactions.
Canadian Institutions Embrace PayPath and Save Millions
Colleges and universities in Canada began adopting PayPath as a user-fee model that passes along the processing costs to the card holder. Credit is more widely used in Canada today, so families and students are more comfortable with paying the fees associated, as they have become more common in many aspects of e-Commerce.
Canadians understand that they’re paying for the convenience of using a service, so institutions that implement PayPath rarely receive any pushback from students and their families. These campuses save a substantial amount of money as a result of PayPath, and there are several recent examples where TouchNet’s PayPath solution has saved a campus more than $1M in annual processing costs.
PayPath integrates with Ellucian, PeopleSoft and other TouchNet Ready Partners, which improves PCI compliance and reconciliation, all while students and authorized users are able to pay with more than just cheque and cash. This provides a better user experience, and more convenient payment methods to the student, parent, and campus community.