Consumer Comeback Blog

Credit Score Glossary: Authorization Hold

Authorization Hold: This happens when authorization is given by a bank for an electronic transaction (with a credit or debit card) and ‘holding’ the amount of that transaction as unavailable.

Authorization hold, also referred to as preauthorization, often happens at places such as gas stations and restaurants—because the final transaction amount is not known. The ‘hold’ can be placed on a portion of a consumer’s available debit balance or credit limit until the merchant clears the transaction or the hold falls off. Authorization holds typically can last anywhere from a few hours to several days.

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