Customer account

This page describes the customer's Bills & payments tab from the point of view of the school (eg owner, office staff or an instructor). If you are a customer, please see Bills & payments in the user guide.

If you have turned on the billing system for everyone, all your customers will see their own Bills & payments tab in their account when they log in. Otherwise if the tab is not shown, you might need to find the customer first using the People tab and turn on the billing system for their account using their Settings tab.

Additional options are available when viewing the customer's Bills & payments tab as office staff. For example, you can manually create an invoice, credit note, or record payments received outside Stripe using an adjustment.

Manual entry

Types of manual entries

There are a few different types of transaction you might want to add manually to a customer's account. Most are only available to office staff and the school owner, but instructors can add invoices and can edit existing invoices in the draft state (more on that later).

  • Invoice.
    The system will create invoices itself for flights, training (including ground school) and for regular payments such as membership fees.
    You or an instructor might want to add an invoice manually if a customer wants to purchase something else from you, such as a knee board, pilot's logbook, charts or a headset. If the purchase is just after a flight, note the flight's invoice will be in a draft state for about an hour, and you can simply add a new line to that invoice for any extras.
  • Credit note.
    Credit notes can be issued to give a discount on someone's account. You might want to offer a credit such as this when someone pays a large amount up front for their flight training. For example, you might offer a package for a fixed number of flight hours, and extras such as knee board, chart and so on for a fixed price. If the customer makes this payment (either through the system or direct to you), you could add an additional credit on their account to adjust the amount they paid up to a balance equal to the value of your standard prices for the flight hours and any extras. This would mean you could leave the student on your standard or student price group instead of creating price groups for different packages.
    You might also add credit notes if there is some disagreement over flight training and you are refunding someone. In that situation, create a credit for the amount in dispute (which also records the tax due back to your business) and then either refund from a previous payment (if made in the system) or add an adjustment if you hand over money direct, outside the system.
  • Adjustment.
    An adjustment represents a cash or card transaction that did not go via the billing system. For example, if the customer made a payment to you using cash, your own card machine, or a cheque, they will want to see the payment recorded in their account. To do this, add an adjustment.
    Adjustments are also used if you are refunding the customer from outside the system. For example, if you give the customer cash, cheque or transfer money to their bank account or card. In this case, create a record of that transaction as an adjustment. Take care when filling in the form because unlike invoices and credit notes, adjustments are locked and cannot be edited afterwards.
  • Opening balance.
    An opening balance is a special type of adjustment. When adding an adjustment, you can choose to fix the balance to a known amount. Any adjustment necessary is made to arrive at the balance you specify. In addition, older transactions are archived and do not appear when the customer views their transaction history.
    By adding an opening balance, even if zero, you are confirming to the customer the amount in their account as you move them from an older system to this one. This is important because customers will want to know where they stand and will rely on the list of transactions to tell them how much they owe, how much to budget or when they need to make another payment.

 

Refunds

The process for refunding is two steps.

First, you should issue a credit note that itemises and describes what you are refunding for. The credit also contains the tax amounts, and if you are registered for VAT you can claim back this amount from your tax authority.

Next, you can try to refund back to the customer's card if they have used the billing system to make payments. Look for transactions of the type Receipt. If not, or if the last payment is over 90 days old, you will need to send them the money yourself and add an adjustment to their account manually (see above).

Assuming there is a recent receipt listed, click on it to view the details. Then click the Refund button at the top. You can refund all or part of a payment, the system will keep track of when a payment is fully refunded.

 

Draft vs Finalised invoices

When you create an invoice or credit manually, you will see they are created as drafts. These do not appear on the customer's account and you can continue to make changes to them. Once you "finalise" the transaction, it is moved into the customer's account and they can see it. Once finalised, you can no longer edit it but you can of course reverse any invoice with a credit and likewise any credit with an invoice.

Invoices created by the system are finalised straight away. This means when adding a flight, you can view the invoice immediately and take payment.

If you want to sell something to a new customer - such as a logbook - you can add a new invoice to their account using the Manual entry button.