SumUp Pricing: Is It Good Value for Money?

Customer paying at a cafe with their phone

All providers have been reviewed and tested by our Research team. By requesting a quote, we can match you with a potential supplier, and we may earn a small commission for this referral

Operating a mobile business is an effective way to dodge the rising business energy costs deeply affecting brick and mortar shops in the UK – especially since the end of the Energy Bill Relief Scheme in April 2023. However, you need a reliable card reader, with a steady connection, to run one of those.

On that note, SumUp offers card readers that boast connectivity as their big asset. Their prices start at £39 + VAT while transaction fees start at 1.69%. It also scores a 4/5 in our in-depth research into the best card readers.

What is the cost of a SumUp reader?

Tip: you can compare the pricing of several top card processing providers using our cost comparison tool to avoid overspending.

  1. SumUp Air – SumUp’s basic reader: from £39
  2. SumUp Solo – SumUp’s strong mid-tier reader: from £79
  3. SumUp 3G and Printer – SumUp’s most advanced reader: from £129

However, SumUp’s price tags don’t make it the cheapest merchant account in the land and some of its competitors can suit you better depending on your needs. To help you out of the fence, we prepared a rundown of its fees and charges and you can read it all below.

Swipe right to see more
0 out of 0

SumUp Air Reader

SumUp Solo

SumUp 3G and Printer


£39 + VAT


From £79


From £129

Transaction fee
Transaction fee
  • 1.69% cards
  • 2.5% Invoices, Online Store and Payment Links



Transaction fee
  • 1.69% cards
  • 2.5% Invoices, Online Store and Payment Links


SumUp fees & charges explained

SumUp works on a pay-as-you-use basis. If you’re a small business owner, you’re sure to benefit from the lack of fixed costs. Unlike contract merchant accounts, it doesn’t charge a monthly subscription for you to use it, so there are no pricing plans.

SumUp does charge transaction fees, which will be the bulk of your ongoing expenses should you choose it as your merchant account provider. It bites 1.69% off in-person transactions and 2.5% off keyed-in, online, and invoice (aka card not present) payments. It also charges 2.5% on payment links.

These fees put SumUp towards the pricier end of the providers we analysed in our research into the best merchant accounts in the market. They also make the provider not a great choice for businesses that deal with a big sales volume (like busy bars and coffee shops), as they’re bound to build up and turn into a great expense.

Its in-person transaction fee is cheaper than Zettle’s and Square’s, both of which charge 1.75%, but its card not present fee is the same as those rivals (2.5%). To its credit, like Stripe, SumUp doesn’t charge its fee for unsuccessful transactions.

With its cheapest reader, which costs £39 + VAT, SumUp also has more expensive hardware than Zettle and Square, which only charge £16 + VAT and £29 + VAT for their entry-level readers, respectively. This shouldn’t pose a problem if you decide to use SumUp to run an online business: it allows you to create a webstore for free and take payments through it – a feature which landed the provider a spot in our best payment gateways ranking.

Ultimately, we don’t think SumUp offers good value for money when compared with some of its cheaper competitors. We’ll discuss the reasons for this in the rest of the article, while also giving you a breakdown of SumUp’s charges.

How do you need to take card payments?

Compare Prices

How much does SumUp hardware cost?

SumUp offers three readers: the basic Air (£39 + VAT), the mid-tier Solo (£79 + VAT) and the advanced 3G (£129 + VAT). The warranty on SumUp’s readers lasts for one year, like Zettle and Stripe. However, at two years, Square’s warranty is longer than SumUp’s.

You can buy SumUp’s readers in one-off purchases, which puts it in the same league as other mobile card reader providers Revolut and Square. It also makes SumUp better than Tyl, which doesn’t sell its readers in one go but instead charges a minimum £6.99 + VAT monthly fee for their use.

SumUp also offers add-ons that transform it into an EPOS system. Starting from £29 per month, you’re able to get reports on your sales, revenue and transactions. Other add-ons, such as hospitality features (£9 per month) and promotional tools (£18 per month), are also available. This is extra helpful if you want to be able use SumUp to get sales insights to help you grow. That said, Square and Zettle can also be used as EPOS systems, with the benefit of not charging extra for it.

SumUp Air vs SumUp Solo vs SumUp 3G

At £39 + VAT, Air is SumUp’s cheapest card reader. Unlike its advanced counterparts, it doesn’t come with a charging dock, which will cost you £5 + VAT extra. That said, the dock will only come in handy if your business operates from a counter, as mobile business owners are likely to charge the reader on the go.

However, Air lacks mobile data functionality, requiring connection to a phone to take payments. In comparison, Solo and 3G come equipped with this. On one hand, this means you’ll depend on a charged, connected phone at all times to be able to charge your customers. On the other, Air’s battery lasts for up to 12 hours, which is four hours longer than SumUp’s other readers.

Solo and 3G are similar to one another in that they both have batteries that last up to eight hours and come equipped with mobile data. This combination makes SumUp the best mobile merchant account for connectivity among the ones we researched.

Out of three card readers, Solo offers the best value for money. For £79 + VAT, you get a machine that can take payments anywhere there’s internet. Plus, it already comes with a charging dock.

It is worth noting that SumUp’s 3G offering, which costs £129 + VAT, does everything that Solo offers and is able to print receipts. If receipts are essential to your business, then 3G is your ideal weapon of choice in SumUp’s arsenal. If not, Solo’s more than able to serve you well for a lower price.

Compare quotes and save money

Does SumUp have any extra fees?

SumUp is very clear on its costs, so you’re unlikely to get any surprise charges. Its transaction fees are flat-rate and cover interchange fees, which are the processing charges the merchant account pays out to the banks of your customers. Also, while SumUp charges VAT on the sale of its hardware, it doesn’t do so on the transaction fees.

Because SumUp is not provided through fixed-term contracts or monthly subscriptions, you don’t run the risk of sudden renewal costs or exit fees. This straightforward pricing structure keeps SumUp’s fees easily visible and traceable, making it a great option for small businesses. However, if you’re aiming for the lowest transaction fees available, you have better options in Revolut and Stripe.

How does SumUp’s pricing compare with other merchant services’?

SumUp’s pricing is on par with Stripe’s and Revolut’s in that it doesn’t apply a fixed charge. This makes SumUp better than Tyl by Natwest, which charges a minimum £6.99 + VAT monthly subscription for you to use their readers.

This makes SumUp particularly convenient for seasonal business owners (like ice cream shops or outdoor bars that only open in summer, for example), as they’re able to reap the benefits of a card machine without worrying about paying for it in the months they’re not operating.

Starting at £39 + VAT, SumUp’s hardware is more expensive than Square and Zettle, which charge £16 + VAT and £29 + VAT, respectively, for their most basic reader. However, SumUp’s readers are cheaper than Stripe’s and Revolut’s, both of which start selling their hardware at £49 + VAT, making SumUp a better choice for small businesses.

SumUp’s base transaction fee (1.69%) is cheaper than Square’s and Zettle’s, as these providers’ fees start at 1.75%. This difference in price puts SumUp in advantage against those competitors, since Square’s and Zettle’s charges build up to a bigger expense than SumUp’s. If you run a business open all year round (rather than a seasonal one), you’ll see more savings in the long run if you pick SumUp.

That said, Stripe and Revolut offer cheaper fees than SumUp, with the former charging 1.4% + 20p, while the latter charges only 0.8% + 20p. These providers have pricier readers, but this investment can be off-set by the savings in transaction fees over time. This makes Stripe and Revolut cheaper overall than SumUp. They also support other currencies, which SumUp doesn’t do.

If you’re looking for EPOS integration, SumUp is not as good a choice as Zettle or Square, which score 4.1/5 and 3.3/5 in price in our research, respectively. They offer higher transaction fees, but they include a free EPOS system and their readers are cheaper.

However, SumUp is worth considering if your main concern is connectivity because it offers two mobile data enhanced readers.

So… Does SumUp offer good value for money?

Of the six providers we tested, our research shows that SumUp doesn’t offer good value for money when it comes to simple merchant account functionality. Its competitor Revolut, takes payments, charges lower transaction fees, and supports other currencies. Overall, it’s cheaper despite having costlier readers. It also scores 4.8/5 in our analysis, which is well above SumUp’s 4.2/5.

SumUp may offer its hardware at a higher price with lower transaction fees than Square and Zettle, but these two competitors come out on top when it comes to EPOS system integration because they offer it for free. This is a feature you will have to pay for with SumUp.

Ultimately, SumUp has an absolute asset in its enhanced mobile data hardware. This makes it a worthwhile option for small, mobile businesses that can benefit from its connectivity, such as roadside eateries.

Our methodology

To give a rundown on SumUp’s pricing, we looked at SumUp’s hardware cost as well as its readers’ features, to give you an analysis of the value for money offered by the provider.

We’ve also taken a look at SumUp’s transaction fees and compared it to the ones charged by its direct competitors, so you could see how SumUp positions itself within the wider market.

Finally, we’ve also taken into consideration SumUp’s overall features and expansions, for you to have an idea of what exactly your money can buy when choosing it. To give you perspective and consolidate our findings, we compared those to the offerings of other providers.

Looking for a better deal?

SumUp pricing FAQs

Is there a monthly fee for SumUp?
SumUp doesn’t currently charge monthly fees. To use it, you only need to buy one of its readers and the rest of your expenses will be down to transaction fees.
How much does SumUp charge per transaction?
SumUp takes 1.69% of in-person payments, and 2.5% of keyed-in payments, and  online and invoice payments.
How much does SumUp charge for payment links?
SumUp charges 2.5% per transaction on payment links.
Are SumUp and Square the same?
SumUp and Square are not the same. Both are merchant account providers that also offer EPOS systems, but their similarities end there. SumUp has more expensive hardware than Square (their cheapest reader cost £39 + VAT and £16 + VAT, respectively). On the other hand, SumUp charges lower transaction fees than Square for in-person payments: SumUp’s fee for that is 1.69% while Square’s is 1.75%.
Which is best: Zettle or SumUp?
According to our in-depth analysis of the providers in this market, Zettle is better than SumUp, where Zettle scores 4.8/5 against SumUp’s 4.2/5. Zettle’s offers more free reporting features, which include sales forecasting and inventory management tools. SumUp offers less of those features while charging extra for them.

Our site is reader-supported. Some featured providers are our partners, so we may earn a commission if you make a purchase through our site. This is at no extra cost to our readers, and this doesn’t affect the independence of our reviews. Whether or not we have a partnership with a company does not affect our rating and review of the service.

Written by:
Lucas Pistilli author headshot photo
Lucas is a Brazilian-born journalist and Expert Market’s go-to writer for all things EPOS systems, merchant accounts, and franking machines. Having covered business, politics and technology for many years, he’s driven by his passion for the written word and his goal to help people make well-informed decisions.
Reviewed by:
Ruairi uses his 3+ years of research experience to uncover insights which can help Expert Market provide the best business solutions for their users. He has done this by meeting with business owners to find out what is important to them and what challenges they face on a daily basis. Ruairi specialises in tools that can be used to grow your business and has done research for a wide range of categories on Expert Market, such as EPOS, Website Builders, and Merchant Accounts.