SpotWalla Newsletter
2022, Volume 1
Funding Your Account
Since the writing of this newsletter, the account funding information has evolved. Please refer to the Funding Your Account help page for up-to-date information. If you want to view the original newsletter, click the panel below.

In the 2022, Volume 1 newsletter we address funding your account, cost-savings measures, coupons and refunds.

No Action Required

There is no action required on your part at this time. A week or two before February 1st we will update SpotWalla and expose the account/funding functionality. Until then it's business as usual. Y'all have fun and be careful out there.

What You Pay For

In SpotWalla you pay for storing locations, viewing locations on a map and device activity plus any transaction fees and applicable taxes. Storage/Map fees are 4 cents/day for any account with one or more messages. Device activity fees are 3 cents/day for each device with activity. Activity can be the act of polling a SPOT or InReach device or a phone app that uses the Web API or any device that uses the Email Interface.

Assuming your account has at least one message for the entire year, the storage/map fees are $14.60. Each device that has year-around activity incurs a fee of $10.95. So if you're the typical user that has messages and a device that's kept active the entire year, That's $25.55 per year. You can reduce these costs by applying some cost-savings measures discussed below.

A SpotWalla "day" is from 12:00AM to 11:59PM in the America/Chicago timezone.

New users will receive a $1 credit. For the typical user this equates to two weeks of storage/map and device activity fees and allows news users time to get acquainted with and start using SpotWalla. Of course, we won't start drawing from those funds until your first device and message arrive.

Funding Your Account

All funds are in US Dollars. Funds added to your account will be used to pay for storage/map and device activity fees. Funding your account will ensure your data remains intact, your devices are polled and family and friends can view your trips.

You can fund your account with any amount that suits your needs. If you want to add enough funds to last a year and not worry about things, then add $25 to your account. You will be able to configure an alert to send an email when your account balance falls below a certain value.

If your account falls below $0, SpotWalla will continue to provide and charge for the services used. If your account falls below $-12, your trips will no longer be viewable and device activity will cease. Adding funds to your account will first be used to recover outstanding debts. The remaining balance will be used for future activity.

There are several ways to fund your account. In order of preference they are:

  1. Stripe
  2. Paypal
  3. Snail Mail

Stripe

Stripe is not Paypal! There is no need to create a Stripe account. The only reason we mention Stripe is for full disclosure. You need to know where your card/payment details are being processed and you need to know that SpotWalla has no interest in storing your Personal Card Information in our systems. We do not need it and we do not want it. That's the Stripe advantage.

You choose to use Stripe when you fund your account from the SpotWalla website. For instance, if you're viewing your account details and click the Add Funds button (highlighted below), you will be forwarded to a Stripe-hosted page to process your payment.


Note: This functionality will not be available until the last week of January.

When complete, you're automatically returned to SpotWalla and your account balance is adjusted accordingly. Using Stripe is recommended because it's the easiest, quickest, most secure and least error-prone way to fund your account.


Paypal

If you prefer to use Paypal to fund your account, send a payment to support@spotwalla.com or, if you use the Paypal app on your phone or have QR-code scanning capabilities, scan this QR code:

Please include a note and tell us who you are and the email address on your account. We have to update your account manually and it will be impossible without this information. When we receive the confirmation email from Paypal we will update your account accordingly. This will not be an immediate update and could take a day or two to reflect in your account.

Contact Support?

If your account is not updated after a day or two, please contact support. It means we cannot identify the account to credit. Please include any pertinent information like:

  • Your Name
  • The email address of your SpotWalla account if it's different than the one used to send your email
  • The date the payment was made
  • The Paypal transaction ID

For a more immediate response, we recommend using Stripe.


Snail Mail

If you want to mail us a check, money order, cashier's check, etc that's fine too. This method of funding does not incur any processing fees so the entire amount will be credited to your account.

Make your check payable to:

SpotWalla Systems, Inc.

And send it to:

SpotWalla Systems, Inc.
PO Box 1668
White House, TN 37188

Cost Savings Measures

There are measures you can take to mitigate SpotWalla's Storage/Map and Device Activity fees. As with most things SpotWalla, you are responsible for making these decisions and taking any action required.

The only way to eliminate Storage/Map fees is by purging your device or its messages from SpotWalla. As long as your account has at least one device with at least one message, the Storage/Map fees will apply. While we don't recommend removing memories, this help page will guide you through the purge process should you choose this option:

Purging a Device and/or Messages

Device activity fees are a bit different. You have absolute control over device activity. What you can do depends on the type of device you have. The following table contains cost savings measures for each device type.

Device Type Measures
SPOT and InReach

Device activity is defined as the act of polling your device for new messages. It doesn't matter if new messages exist or if you have an active trip or anything else. SpotWalla polls these devices every 10-30 minutes as long as they're configured correctly and their message interface is active.

If you don't want to incur these charges, simply deactivate the device's message interface when it's not in use. This option can be found on the Device Update page and is highlighted in the image below:

To deactivate the device uncheck the box and click the Update button. To activate it, check the box and click the Update button.

Bubbler, SWTracker and gibbyTrip

The phone apps use SpotWalla's Web API to log into your account, create messages, upload photos, etc. If an app does any of these things during the day, the device activity fee applies.

If you don't want to incur these charges, ensure the app is not running when you're not using it. Be sure to quit the app. This process may differ on iOS and Android devices.

Zoleo The Zoleo device interface is based on an email interface. The easiest way to not incur these charges is by not sending a check-in message. You can also remove the zoleo@spotwalla.com contact from the list of Check-In recipients in your Zoleo account. Just remember to add it back when you want those messages to flow to SpotWalla.
Generic A generic device will incur a device activity charge if the email interface is used to create a message for the device. Uploading GPX data is not considered device activity.

Coupons

SpotWalla will always support users who want to participate in an Iron Butt Association ride or who are participating in an organized event that uses SpotWalla to track participants.

Coupons allow users to participate in organized events without incurring any charges. They're primarily for those users who are only using SpotWalla because they're participating in an event. We don't want to burden them or the event with additional costs. The hope is these users will see the ongoing benefit of using SpotWalla and choose to fund their account.

The Honor System

We don't have time to audit the redemption of every coupon. We rely on users to be honest and only redeem a coupon if they're participating in the event and if they do not want to pay SpotWalla fees to participate.

We will periodically examine coupon usage. If there's clear evidence of abuse and we are unable to reach a mutual and amicable resolution, you will be issued a refund and your account will be closed.

If you're an event organizer or participant in an event that does not have a coupon, please contact SpotWalla Support and we will create one.


Refunds

The unused funds in your account are yours. You can request a refund at any time. Refunds are a manual process. A check will be issued to you and could take 5-10 days to arrive in your mailbox. A $5 processing fee will apply.

When requesting a refund, please send an email from the email address on your SpotWalla account. Include the following information:

  • To whom the check will be made payable.
  • The address where the refund should be sent.
  • Do you want your account purged from SpotWalla?


As always, if you have any questions or concerns, send an email to SpotWalla Support and we will do our best to help.

Thanks
Jason Jonas