Accounts & Billing

Guides do not have access to account information but there are some common questions and problems people have with billing that you can help with.

Where do I send a payment?
Halsoft Inc., PO Box 26662, Austin, TX 78755-0662

You can find this address in the VPguides FAQ and the VPchat help files
Feel free to copy and paste the address to the customer and please remind them to put their account information on the money order or check. Receiving a money order with no account information on it only delays applying it until we find out who it is from.  Also, we only take US dollars, so, no duckets, lira, or glass beads please.

Why did my credit card fail?
You won't be able to answer that question for them, but you can give them some great information that might help them to help themselves.  All of the billing information that they entered with us must match the information on record with their bank/credit card company, expiration date, address, name, etc...
It's good to direct people to the MY ACCOUNT area to review or change any of their billing information.

Checks, by the by, can only be sent in by US customers.
We don't take checks from Canada, UK, Australia, etc...

We do not take Overnight Mail.

If someone needs to send in a payment quickly...and they want to overnight the payment using Fed Ex or some other service please let them know that we DO NOT take overnight mail.  All the mail goes to a PO Box and you can't Fedex anything to a PO Box.

How do echecks work , or more precisely, "My money was already taken out of my account, why isn't my account on yet?"
When a customer uses an echeck the money is immediately taken from their account.  It makes its way to us and usually takes 3 to 5 business days to clear.  If the customer isn't satisfied with that response, please have them write to or the helpdesk.

How do I transfer a name or get a name back that I've deleted?
We can transfer and retrieve names if they are no longer in use.  The key is that an account owner is the only one that can make this request.  There is a one dollar fee per name transfer.

What payment types do we accept?

There are several payment types: money order, check, credit card, echeck, and PayPal
PayPal is a little confusing for people because they often don't realize that VPchat and PayPal are NOT the same Company

This is important to note
If a customer wants to change a subscription or buy an add on or cancel their account and they use paypal, they will have to make some changes in paypal.  There's a link to PayPal in the help section.

Some people often ask about why their account is Pending or in a Pending Status
What this means is that they have a subscription with us and there's a short space of time between when we receive a payment or when a payment clears.  While we wait, the account goes to pending.  If a customer doesn't have a subscription, or they pay month to month, if they pay late, their accounts automatically expire.
The system changes it to expired automatically and usually in the middle of the night.

It's important to let people know if it comes up, to keep their billing information private.  Some folks want to share accounts or payment etc...
while we know it happens, we certainly discourage it
it's better to encourage individuals to get their own accounts
privacy is a key element to dealing with billing
This can come up when folks lose their password....and this is when folks get into a lot of trouble.
Passwords shouldn't be shared.  I think you guys know this already.
Account owners have their personal billing info in their accounts and if they give a password out, there information is not safe.
Also guides NEVER ask for their billing info
If they have a question where that kind of thing needs to be shared send them to the helpdesk
We do a lot of online transactions, and above all we want our customers to feel good and safe about giving us money.

A couple other points are
1. Canceling an account
2. canceling auto renew
People get really confused about these things
If someone (and we hope not) wants to cancel an account
if they are using a credit card or bank card
they can go to the MY ACCOUNT area
and disable AUTO RENEW
what this means is that we will not charge their card again
it doesn't mean their account closes immediately
their account closes on the expiration/renewal date

xxxx does the site ask for feedback as to why they are cancelling?
good question
if the customer writes in and asks to cancel....they usally tell us
if they simply disable auto renew
Subscription Changes
If someone wants to downgrade their subscription
it's important that they know a couple of things
They need to reduce the number of names in their account to match the new subscription
So, if someone wanted to go from a Family to Basic account
They'd need to delete 3 names
After that, they need to write in
If they want to increase their subscription (which we hope they all do: ))
they can do that in the MY ACCOUNT area
If they look in the account summary box
they'll be able to upgrade
they will be charge a small fee if they upgrade before their renewal date.
It should tell them when they upgrade exactly how much they owe.
A good rule of thumb for billing stuff
is that whatever they need to do
it can be found in the MY ACCOUNT area
They can buy add ons
Make a Payment
Oh one more thing
if someone's account expires
they can't sign into chat, but they can sign in to make a payment
But really that MY ACCOUNT area has all the bells and whistles