Swipe to Pre-Authorize

Many busy bars and restaurants like the convenience of swiping a card once - when a tab is opened - and then returning the credit card to the guest. By eliminating the need for picking up the card at the time of payment, servers and bartenders can now deliver a signature slip and bill to the guest at the time of close-out, saving time and making the guest experience even better. 

This option is only available for Tab-type checks. 

Breadcrumb 2.7.4 includes support for Swipe to Pre-Auth. You must update to 2.7.4 to use this feature. 

Set up swipe to pre-auth

Pre-auth a check

Close out a a pre-authed check

Other payment options

Pre-auth and EMV



Set Up to Pre-Authorizations

You can choose whether to use pre-auth or not. To allow it go to HQ > Settings and scroll to the "Pre-Auth Tabs" section of the page. Check the box. Now all employees who have permission to create and work checks will be able to add a pre-auth when creating a tab. Pre-auths do not work for table service, to go orders and delivery. 

How to Pre-Auth a Check


  1. From the home screen, tap the Quick Serve icon to start a new tab. 
  2. Add one or more items to the tab.
  3. Swipe the guest's credit card. When the Tab Created modal appears, Select "Pre-Auth and Return Card." Note that pre-authorizations won't be offered if you're in offline mode. 
  4. Breadcrumb will make an authorization call to validate that the card is good. If the authorization is successful, you'll see the customer's name and a pre-auth banner on the check screen. (If it fails, the tab will show the customer's name, but the pre-authorization will not apply.)




Close out a Pre-Authed Check

When you pre-auth a check, the guest's credit card data is not held on the terminal. Breadcrumb holds onto an authorization code and an encrypted key. When it's time for your guest to close out, we send a second authorization request with this information. 

  1. On a pre-authed tab, select payments and then select credit card on the payment screen. 
  2. Notice that the guest's information is already on the screen. 
  3. On the Choose payment card screen, select "Pre-Authorized card." If your guest wishes to use a different card, select "Another card." 
  4. Tap Authorize or Auth & Close. 
  5. The receipt and signature slip will print. Deliver the signature slip to the guest. You can adjust the tip as you can with any tab. 




Other Payment Options

If your guest wishes to split the tab and place only part of the payment on the authorized card, update the Pay with Credit Card amount to reflect the amount the guest wants placed on the authorized card FIRST. Then add other payment types to the balance. 

If your guest wishes to pay with a different card, swipe the different card on the pay with credit card screen. The authorization on the first card will fall away and the full payment will be applied to the new card. 

If your guest wishes to pay in cash, select fast cash and apply the full amount. The authorization on the card will fall away. 




Pre-Auth and EMV

EMV readers require that the card be present at the time of the final auth. Pre-authorizations do not work with EMV readers. You must use the built in swiper. Note that if you pre-auth a chip-enabled card and it is disputed by the guest, you will be liable for the disputed amount. 





  • There are some risks associated with pre-authorizations. We pre-authorize the card for $1 to ensure that it's a valid card. If a guest runs up a large tab, there is always a chance that the final authorization could fail. 
  • Pre-authorization is not intended as a replacement for delivering a signature slip. You should always get the guest's signature on the signature slip. 
  • Pre-authorizations do not include tips unless Mandatory Gratuity is enforced on the tab. You must still get the tip amount from the guest when they sign the signature slip. If you add a tip without the signature slip, you run the risk of a chargeback or other dispute with the guest.