|Top Previous Next|
The section Working with Transactions covers transactions in depth, so this section will just cover the basics of how transactions can be entered for reservations.
Any time a function is performed on a reservation that might result in additional charges or payments, the Transactions Dialog will be used to enter new transactions. It also shows previous transactions for review or editing. The other function of this dialog is to print or E-mail a receipt (or other forms such as confirmations, Window Tags, etc).
Getting to the Reservation Transactions Dialog
The first step to entering transactions is getting to the Reservation Transactions dialog. There are several ways to do this, listed below. You should get familiar with all of them, since this is one of the most common functions used, so getting to it efficiently is important. Note that in some cases it's opened for you automatically, for instance when checking in a reservation, or checking out a reservation with a balance due (depending on the Options). Most other times you need to open it yourself.
New Reservation, "Charges & Payments" button -- If you're making a new reservation, clicking the "Charges & Payments" button on the New Reservation Dialog will take you directly to Reservation Transactions. This is a handy shortcut, especially if you don't need to make other changes to the Reservation Details or send a confirmation. Whether you use this button or "Continue to Details" or "Guarantee" (see below) depends on what else your normal procedure requires.
New Reservation, "Guarantee" button and then "Enter a Deposit Transaction Now" -- If you are making an advance reservation and need to enter a deposit, this sequence may be best for you to enter a deposit to guarantee the reservation. It will not only open Transactions, but will immediately open the Enter Deposit dialog.
Right-click menu from the Rack -- Most of the time you will likely be viewing the Rack, where you can see an overview of reservations for the next month or so. So this is one of the quickest ways to get to Transactions (and many other functions) for current and upcoming reservations. Just locate the reservation on the Rack, right-click on the name, and select "Transactions" form the menu that pops up.
Right-click menu from the Map -- You can right-click directly on the Site number on the Map, assuming it has a current reservation (as of the "From" date selected at the top), and select "Transactions" from the pop-up menu.
Right-click on other Tab Views (Arrivals, Departures, On Site, etc) -- As with the Rack, you can right-click the customer name on any of the Tab Views showing reservations to open Reservation Transactions.
Right-click on the Transactions tab -- The Transactions tab view is used for both summary reports and detailed transaction reporting. When in Details mode, it becomes a powerful tool for finding transactions already entered and researching issues. Once in Details mode, you can right-click on each transaction and get the familiar menu, where you can select "Transactions" to open the appropriate Transactions dialog where you can see the full details. The important thing to note here is that it will open the appropriate Transactions dialog -- that is, if the transaction belongs to a Reservation, it will open the Reservation Transactions dialog. If it was entered only on a Customer, not a Reservation, then it will open Customer Transactions. If it was entered as Unbound or in Point of Sale (with no customer or reservation selected), then it will open that appropriate dialog, and so on. So using this method is also a good way to find out exactly how the transaction was entered.
Reservation Details, "New/Edit Transactions" button -- If you're already in Reservation Details, just click the New/Edit Transactions button. Of course there many ways to get to Reservation Details, covered elsewhere, but the point here is that if you're already in Reservation Details, then you're just one step away from Transactions. IMPORTANT -- do not use New/Edit Transactions from Customer Details, since that will not associate the transactions entered with any particular reservation, because one Customer can have many Reservations (see Database Organization). Except for very specific cases that are unrelated to a specific reservation, such as membership dues, you will not want to enter transactions directly on Customers.
Reservation Details, "Quote/Confirmation" button -- This is also on Reservation Details, but has a special use. While the dialog it opens is identical to Reservation Transactions, it's only used for temporarily entering transactions, e.g. for confirmation letters, in which case you don't want to save the transactions as real balances due yet. This is covered more in the Working with Transactions chapter.
Transactions menu -- We consider this the "last resort" way to get to Reservation transactions, since there are so many quicker and less error-prone ways, at least for near-term reservations. Selecting "Enter Reservation Transactions" from here will open a Find Reservation dialog. You will need to enter the customer name and/or other information to locate the reservation of interest, and then select the desired reservation form the list (double-click on it is quickest, or select the line and click "Use"). There are 2 big reasons we consider this an error-prone method and should only be used if necessary -- It's easy to select the wrong transaction from the list and end up entering them on the wrong transaction (e.g. for the same customer or even a different one), but worse yet you may accidentally select "Enter Customer Transactions" instead, so it would take you to the wrong place (same as entering from New/Edit Transactions on Customer Details -- see the warning above).
Ctrl-T shortcut -- This keyboard shortcut will open the most recently used Reservation Transactions (it must be used from the main screen -- with no other dialogs open). So if you need to go back to the ones you were just looking at, this is a quick way to do it. Note that you can also use "Edit the Last Transaction Viewed" from the Transactions menu, if you forget what the shortcut is.
Entering the Transactions
Once you get to Reservation Transactions, you will see any previous transactions that reservation has -- Campground Master will always keep a continuous list of transactions for a given reservation -- it's a running tally as well as a history.
If you take Advance Deposits for future stays, that should be the only thing you enter until they arrive. See the section on Recommended Transaction handling for more information, before you start entering Charge transactions.
Typically once they are checked in, you will enter any Charges (as well as discounts and taxes) to the Reservation, e.g. the rent for their stay. There are 4 primary ways to add Charges:
"Select Rates" button -- Assuming you have Rates set up, you can use this to select the appropriate charges from a list of pre-defined Rates. This is probably the most commonly used function for adding transactions, if you don't have it set up for Auto-Rates (which can be complicated).
Auto-Rates, Automatic addition -- If you have "Automatically add auto-charges" enabled for Auto-Rates (and working correctly), then you may see those already on the reservation. Any transactions added by Auto-Rates will have a blue background, to distinguish those from manually-entered transactions. See Auto-Rates for more details.
Auto-Rates, "Auto-calculate" button -- With Auto-Rates enabled, there will be a button to "Auto-calculate Rate Charges" on the Reservation Transactions dialog. When this is clicked, it will use the Auto-Rates functionality to immediately add the calculated charges, or re-calculate if there were already auto-charges added. This is typically used when initially testing the auto-rates setup, or to recalculate after reservation changes. It can also be used for long-term reservations to add another month's charges, for instance.
Manual entry buttons -- If you don't have appropriate Rates set up yet, or need to enter special charges, then you can use the individual transaction buttons -- Charge, Discount, and Tax.
Metered electric, water, or gas -- If you're set up for calculating the charges for metered electric, etc, then you can use Select Rates to enter an individual meter reading, or if you do batch readings then you would enter those through the Meter Reports instead of through the Transactions dialog.
Once you have the charges entered, you will need to enter any Payments. The only way to do that is with the manual "Payment" button. Likewise, you may enter Credits, Refunds, etc. with the appropriate button. See those sections for details.
Printing a Receipt, etc
The Transactions dialog is also where you will print receipts, invoices, confirmation letters, and other forms. You can print receipts at any time, whether you have entered new transactions or not. This is handled with one of the buttons in the lower left corner of the dialog.
You should first select the Receipt Type, if the default (shown above the Print buttons) is not appropriate. The default will be the type selected in File / Printing Options, and the "Ticket form" is the initial default. Just select the desired type in the drop-down list to change the style that prints, before clicking one of the Print buttons (this will not change the default for next time). For details on the different formats, see the Receipt Types section.
One the receipt type is selected, you can print the receipt. There are two choices for printing:
Print Reservation Receipt (All) will print a receipt with all of the transactions shown, old and new.
Print Only Some Transactions will print the same kind of receipt but with only certain transactions. There several options for what to print, selected next to the button (before clicking the button) -- see Printing Receipts in Working with Transactions for details.
E-mailing a confirmation or receipt
This is similar to printing, but instead you will just click the "Send E-mail form..." button at the bottom of the Transactions dialog. That will take you to another dialog which allows you to select which E-mail form to send, which transactions to include, etc. See the "E-mailing receipts" section for more details.