1. Home
  2. Knowledge Base
  3. Point of Sale
  4. Invalid Ref with Manual POS Debit / Credit Payment
Invalid Ref with Manual POS Debit / Credit Payment

Q. During POS payment entry, when I select Bypass Card Authorization to handle a phone order that was manually entered in my pin pad, the system says Invalid Ref and won’t let me continue past?

A. This is telling you that the tender key is setup with a valid reference setting. Each credit card company has a starting digit for their card numbers; i.e. 3 for Amex, 4 for Visa, 5 for MasterCard, etc. Try entering just the first digit from the card number in the field beside the dollar amount paid and then an authorization number in the Auth # field:


To find out what the settings are for each of your credit cards, go to Point of Sale » Setup » Software Options » Tender Key Setup.


The Valid Reference Code determines the starting character(s) to be entered in POS for the tender.

Using our screen examples above, the customer paid $1,300 by Visa. When bypassing  card authorization, the user needs to enter a number starting with 4 (or just the number 4) into the Card # field (the name of the reference field is determined by the Reference Description in the tender key setup). So valid references for Card # in our example would include 4, 4510, 4510***1234 etc.

Also, since this transaction does require Authorization, you’ll need to enter an Auth # – usually the authorization code provided on the pin pad, although any number will do.

The expiry dates do not need to be entered.

Was this article helpful?

Related Articles