The Astronomical society of australia

The organisation of professional astronomers in Australia

FAQs

Q What is Wild Apricot?

A Wild Apricot is an off the shelf membership management software that the ASA has chosen to use for its membership management. We did not write Wild Apricot ourselves, so are reliant on commercial releases for updates, and are constrained by the features of the commercial software.

Q What is the auto-payment/auto-renew option? How does it work?

A The auto-renew option within the membership system allows to “set and forget” your ASA membership fee payment. Every year you will be reminded that your membership is about to be renewed, and then, if you do nothing, the system will automatically pay your membership for you. We have set most membership levels to auto-renew as we think many members will prefer this. If you want to change this, then go into your profile and turn the auto-renew off. Auto-renew is turned off for student membership, as students are commonly in the ASA for a shorter period of time. Students can go into their profile and turn the auto-renew feature on.

Q How is payment made?

A The ASA uses an on-line payment gateway called STRIPE, integrated into the new membership platform. STRIPE’s role is to take payments from your Credit Card (currently MasterCard and Visa only) and to pass this payment onto the ASA’s bank. Full details of how this works can be found here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Payment_gateway

Q Do you store my credit card?

A No, your credit card details are at no time ever made available to the ASA by our Payment Gateway – STRIPE. All sensitive information is kept by STRIPE on their own secure servers; all the ASA receives is a transaction ID that enables us to trace the transaction, should a problem arise.

Q How secure is my credit card information?

A The full overview of STRIPE’s security measures can be found here https://stripe.com/docs/security

Q Can I pay for my membership for the next 5 years now?

A No! The furthest ahead you can pay is 1 year.

Q Will you remind me I need to renew my membership each year?

A Yes the system will do this automatically.

Q I am an Honorary member. Do I need to renew my membership?

A  Yes. Unfortunately the system does not allow auto renew for free levels‚Äč so Honorary members must also renew their membership (without cost).

Q Do you accept American Express credit cards?

A No.

Q Why can’t I paste my credit card information?

A In an effort to keep your customers' data more secure, STRIPE has removed the ability to copy and paste credit card numbers.

Q What if my Credit Card I used when I applied for membership expires?

A You will be notified automatically by the system, via email, 2 weeks before the expiry date of your card. You can follow the link in this email to update your card details. Alternatively you can update your CC details at any time by following the link on the membership details section within your profile .

Q Will I get a tax invoice automatically sent to me upon renewal?

A All renewal emails have a link that will take you directly to your account where you can download a copy of your tax invoice. You can also login to your account at any time and clicking on the Invoicing and Payment option under your profile.

Q Will the membership tell me if my credit card is about to be debited for the annual fee?

A You will receive 3 reminder emails: the first will be 30 days before the renewal date; the second 14 days before the actual renewal date, and then the final one on the actual renewal day each year – 1 January.

Q Why is there only one rate now and no separate early bird discount?

A As part of the modernisation of the membership payment process we have had to make some changes to the way we offer the early bird discount. As most members will select auto-renew for their membership payment, the early bird discount is not necessary anymore. This year we will give everyone the early bird discount – so that no one is disadvantaged in this first year.

Q Can you explain the remaining discounted membership to me?

A The ASA has an agreement with the Australian Institute of Physics (AIP) http://aip.org.au/. If you are a current member of the AIP you qualify for an $11 discount on a Full or Fellow membership, and a $5 discount for a Student, Retired or Associate membership. AIP membership is also discounted for ASA members under our reciprocal agreement.

Q Why do I need to sign in to renew my membership?

A Yes you will need to do this. For all membership levels, other than students, security relating to the auto renew setting in the software means you have to login to renew your membership. However if you are a Student member you can just click the link on your invoice that is emailed at renewal time and follow the instructions. This is because the default setting is manual renew for students.

Q I am trying to join as a corporate member. What is a “bundle”? Why does it ask about my family name?

A The term “Bundle” is the name given by Wild Apricot to a membership with more than one person, and for the ASA this is our Corporate Membership. The reference to Family Name is another software constraint as the membership software uses a single application form for both individual and corporate memberships.

Q Can I donate money at the same time as renewing my membership?

A Yes, please make a donation to the Foundation for the Advancement of Astronomy (FAA) using the Donate link on the web page. Donations can be made at any time to one of 10 different funds, each representing a Prize awarded by the ASA. Please feel free to make more than one donation, however, each donation is treated as a separate transaction. All donations to the Foundation are tax deductible.

Q I am moving to Mongolia. This country is not on the list in the database. What do I do?

A Should your country or residence not be on the dropdown list that is displayed during the application stage, don’t worry, just email the Secretary and we will add your location to the list and let you know when we have done so, in order for you to complete your application.

Q I live in Canada. Do I have to pay GST on my membership in Australia?

A No, if you reside outside of Australia you are not required to pay GST your membership will be reduced by the appropriate amount (currently 10%) at checkout.

Q What do I do if I have any questions about my payment? It did not seem to go through?

A You will be able to login and complete the payment from within your account – just follow the prompts. If you still are having difficulties, you can contact the Treasurer. If you are a new member, your account will still have been created and you will still be able to access your profile, however your membership will not be approved until your payment has been completed.

Q I have applied for membership. How do I know when I am accepted as a member?

A Check your email inbox. You will receive 2 emails, the first email will confirm the creation of your account and that your application has been received and is pending approval. The second email will be a welcome email confirming your approval for membership of the ASA. Additionally you should receive a receipt confirming payment.

Q I have signed up for several Chapters when I was a new member, but I am no longer active in 2 of them. How do I change my Chapter membership?

A Log into your account, select the edit profile button and scroll down. The Chapter membership section is towards the bottom of your profile. Tick the check boxes of the Chapters for which you wish to be a member. Select save.

Q I paid my fees in October. Why was I charged an unusual amount?

A Fees are pro-rated, but only if you join in the second half of the year. For example if you join on the 1 October, this is 3 months before the renewal date, your fees will be calculated as 3/12 of the full membership amount.

If you apply to join on the 1 March, this is within the first half of the membership year and as such no pro-rata will be applied; you will need to pay the full amount.



Last updated: 6 March 2017. Additions or corrections to the ASA Secretary
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