Campground Master
Reservation Software for RV Parks and Campgrounds
by Cottonwood Software

Campground Master's EMV / Chip Card support status


Version 9.0 of Campground Master now supports EMV/chip cards through X-Charge or Cayan Genius.

We're putting this information here in hopes that it will reduce the number of calls and E-mails with questions about it.

See the current information below according to which processing software/company you use. We'll update this page whenever we have new information about EMV changes or additional supported options.

Basic Information

Here are some answers to basic questions about what all of this means.

  • This does require new readers to support the "chipped" cards. The little swipes are now "obsolete", although there may be instances where having the swipe as a backup or on computers without EMV terminals will work. The new devices are larger terminals with a PIN pad, which the customer will use to insert or swipe their card, sign, and possibly enter a PIN number.

  • If you already have a terminal with EMV support that you're using standalone, do NOT assume it will work with Campground Master. Each of the processors/gateways has their own requirements and/or designs of the equipment needed. You will need to contact them directly to find out if your current terminal will work or not, and what's required to convert it.

  • EMV support isn't yet a "requirement" in most instances, since all cards will still have magnetic strips. However this may change soon.

  • The main reason to upgrade to EMV is liability -- if a card that does have a chip is swiped using a magnetic swipe instead of inserted in a chip reading device, and if that transaction turns out to be fraudulent (e.g. stolen card), then you can't get reimbursed for the transaction -- the liability is on you, not the credit card company. That's the ONLY liability difference -- there are no extra fines like there are with PCI compliance violations.

  • This liability shift will not affect keyed-in cards ("card not present" transactions), since you obviously can't read the chip in that case. Of course the liability still hinges on having appropriate documentation of the sale with a signature, etc, as always.

Current Progress, by Processing Software Used


X-Charge (aka OpenEdge)

Availability date: Now supported in Campground Master v9.0

X-Charge supports EMV cards & readers in their software. You will need to contact them to get the new readers. The 9.0 release of Campground Master is "certified" for EMV, so you should be able to get the new readers from them.

Here are the details:

  • They may ask which reader you need or what Campground Master supports. Since Campground Master is no longer involved in the reader interface, any reader that X-Charge supports will work.

  • We don't currently support features like signature capture, Applepay, etc. that more advanced readers may support, so I can't tell you whether it's worth getting a reader with that support yet.

  • Campground Master needs to be using the "Xpresslink" processing software option in Credit Card Processing Setup (you should be using this already for PCI compliance, and this has been the recommended interface method since version 6.0).

  • See the notes for X-Charge EMV setup in the Release Notes for version 9.0 to configure the new options in Campground Master.

  • When making a payment with a card present, you will now need to click "Process card" before swiping the card, so X-Charge takes over from there.

  • It will be possible to still enter keyed cards directly in Campground Master, since EMV doesn't apply. But we added an option to force even keyed cards to be entered into X-Charge if you prefer, which will further enhance security since Campground Master will never see the card information (but this makes it more difficult since they need to be entered on the terminal itself, not the computer).



Cayan (formerly "Merchant Warehouse")

Availability date: Now supported in Campground Master v9.0

Campground Master 9.0 has been certified for their new "Genius" integration with the MerchantWare gateway. This supports PIN debit cards, EMV/chip cards, and other new features like ApplePay. This is available whether you use Cayan as your merchant processor or if you're using them only as a gateway to your own merchant processor. However as of now they are only EMV certified with First Data, TSYS and Vantiv processors, so check with them if you're not sure whether it will work for you.
  • If you're ready to set up Genius, contact Cayan to see what you need to do to get Genius/EMV support with their gateway.

  • When making a payment with a card present, you will need to click "Process card" before swiping/inserting the card, so Genius takes over from there. However for card-not-present, you will still enter the card information directly into Campground Master. You can also use an old swipe if necessary for the time being, but of course you would have the non-EMV liability issues if the card does have a chip.

  • You will have the option to "Never store cards" in Campground Master, since the new interface supports repeat transactions using secure tokens. This will enhance your security, even for cards typed/swiped into Campground Master. However, as of this note you can't use the "Never save" option if you put cards into Guarantee info (it only works if there's a transaction processed, like a Deposit).



MCPS for Campgrounds

Estimated ready date: Unknown.

We have very little information on their EMV support as of yet. It's supported through a new gateway interface which we believe will be very similar to Cayan's Genius (see above), but we just recently got the interface details from them. We are hopeful that EMV support for MCPS will be coming soon, but it might not make it in the same release as X-Charge and Cayan EMV support.


Other Processing Software / Processors

Since the old methods of using IC Verify or PC Charge with Campground Master are now obsolete, the only option right now (which in many ways is better anyway) is to use the Cayan / MerchantWare gateway as described above. That also means that it will be changing to the Genius gateway through Cayan. See above for details.



Please contact us if you have any questions.

"We recently installed Campground Master and were happy to find that it met all our expectations. It is both powerful and easy to use, and is a big step up from the old reservation software we were using before".
- T. Bratton,
Chimney Park RV Resort,
Mission TX
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