Our rating(4.3/5)
This Square booking system is also a POS system for iOS and Android. 
Square Appointments is a complete scheduling, payments and POS system for professionals taking bookings online and in person. It has enough features for a small practice and options to integrate with other software, but what’s our experience of it?
  • Highs: Free for one user. Integrated payments. Online booking page included. Choice of payment methods.
  • Lows: Scheduling software and online booking page could have more features. Only works with Square Payments.
  • Best for: Individual professionals and teams of professionals in need of an easy booking system with convenient payment tools.

What is Square Appointments?

Square Appointments is a complete client scheduling system with an app for the point of sale (POS), online booking website and payment system included.

It is easy and free to sign up for Square and download the Square Appointments app on iPhone, iPad or Android tablet or smartphone. Clients can pay for their bookings online or in person through a Square card machine, with payouts settled in your bank account within 1-2 business days.

The Square Appointments software has a lot of useful features like no-show protection, team management, an online booking process, customer library and in-store payment options directly from the booking calendar in the app.

As with all Square features, the Appointments system is linked to a wide range of free tools such as a virtual terminal for telephone payments, sales analytics, payment links and contract templates. You can also integrate the software with many external software tools for marketing, ecommerce and much more.

Image: Square

Square Appointments iPhone app

Square bookings on iPhone.


Individual users in Australia can use Square Appointments indefinitely for free. There is only a tiered monthly fee when you add more users. This allows colleagues to have their own calendars in the system.

The monthly cost is $39 AUD for 2-5 users or $79 AUD for 6-10 users, all including GST. Larger teams can get custom pricing by contacting Square directly.

No contractual commitment is required for any of the plans or features. A free 30-day trial is available for the subscriptions, if you want to try the staff settings.

Square Appointments cost*
Software subscription 1 staff: A$0/mo
2-5 staff: A$39/mo
6-10 staff: A$79/mo
11+ staff: Custom quote
Chip, contactless transaction fee 1 staff: 1.9% for Square Stand/Reader, 1.6% for Square Register
2-10 staff: 1.6%
11+ staff: Custom rate
Online booking/transaction fee 2.2%
Payouts Free
Refunds Free
Chargebacks Free

*Pricing includes GST.

Software subscription 1 staff: A$0/mo
2-5 staff: A$39/mo
6-10 staff: A$79/mo
11+ staff: Custom quote
Chip, contactless transaction fee 1 staff: 1.9% for Square Stand/Reader, 1.6% for Square Register
2-10 staff: 1.6%
11+ staff: Custom rate
Online booking/transaction fee 2.2%
Payouts Free
Refunds Free
Chargebacks Free

*Pricing includes GST.

Other than that, there is only a transaction fee per successful payment accepted through Square.

This transaction fee is 1.6% for Square Register (currently, the Square Appointments app is not supported by Square Terminal), or 1.9% on Square Reader and Square Stand for a one-user (free) plan. The rate then goes to 1.6% per card reader payment as soon as you pay a subscription for at least 2 users, and lower rates are negotiable on plans for over 10 users.

Online transactions through your booking site incur a 2.2% charge. If you take telephone bookings through the virtual terminal, invoice payments, keyed transactions through the app or a cancellation charge with a card on file, the fee is also 2.2%.

Square Appointments accepts all major cards in Australia, such as Visa, Mastercard, American Express, JCB and eftpos.

Standard payouts reaching your bank account the following business day are free. Chargebacks are free and so are refunds.

POS system – how it works

Whereas standard retail POS systems display a product grid as the main interface, a scheduling POS app like Square Appointments centres the calendar. This allows you to tap a time slot that works for your client, add the service being booked and process the transaction.

Image: Mobile Transaction

Square Appointments app side menu

An open side menu in the Square Appointments app.

To create a booking in the Appointments app, you must:

  • Pick a time slot in the calendar
  • Add the customer who is booking
  • Add the service that is being booked

You can select whether it is a whole-day booking or timed slot, and optionally add physical products (e.g. if you’re selling a shampoo for your hairdresser client), set a discount or write a custom note applicable to the booking.

After confirming this information, you can select if the client should receive a booking notification by text, email or both – and then the booking is added to the calendar.

Image: Square

Square appointment details

Booking details in the Square Appointments app.

You could then tap the confirmed booking in the calendar to edit it or process the payment from the till.

The customer can reschedule the booking through a link in the confirmation message or add the appointment to their Google, Apple, Outlook or Yahoo calendar. There is also a Twitter share button if they’re really excited about your service.

Most importantly, the customer can choose to reschedule, cancel or book another appointment from their booking page – subject to your terms and cancellation policy, of course.

Speaking of terms, Square Contracts is a complimentary feature that lets you create contracts, terms and conditions included with your client appointment emails through Square. It has preexisting templates for a service agreement, confirmation of delivery, credit card authorisation, sale of goods and completion of services, but you can create any kind of contract.

Other booking options can be set up by the business owner to suit their processes. For example, bookings can be automatically accepted when the client books, or you could manually accept each one if you want more control.

Image: Square

Square booking requests give you control over which bookings to accept.

You could also add a tipping option at checkout, customised email notifications and booking rules.

If you’re dealing with regular customers, the customer directory helps you save time. When you add a customer to an appointment, the app automatically adds this person to your customer library along with any contact details added to the profile. You can also easily assign notes to a customer, such as their preferences and birthdays.

By adding card details to the customer’s profile (card on file), you can charge the person’s card when necessary. This means that if you do have a no-show or last-minute cancellation, you can still charge the card belonging to your customer (if the customer has agreed to this policy at the time of booking).

However, the cardholder can at any time retract their card information remotely, which has been a problem for some merchants who get customers booking, then retracting their card information and not turning up for a booking that could’ve gone to a paying customer.

Image: Square

Square customer directory

Square’s customer directory makes it easy to save client and card details.

There is also an items library where you can add all your services and products. When making an appointment, a service is selected for a time slot. Each service can have a duration, processing time and extra time added to keep the calendar availability accurate.

If you’re selling add-ons such as styling products alongside hairdressing appointments, these can easily be added to the appointment transaction at checkout.

Image: Square

You can add products to appointments when you check out a customer in the app.

You can allocate resources to a service, for example rooms or chairs. When a service is booked where a certain resource is required, the resource will then be booked automatically. Similarly, specific staff members can be added to a service.

To keep the booking calendar free of conflicts, you can book in personal events that apply to your business only. For example, lunch and time off can be booked so that customers won’t be able to opt for a service during these times when a team member is unavailable.

A paid Appointments subscription (2+ users) includes advanced staff permissions, called Team Plus (normally $35 AUD/month). This lets you create custom permissions and roles for different employees about what features they can access in the app. The free plan for one user has a decent range of team settings already, including timecards, shifts and staff analytics, but only one set of permissions.

A new feature is staff commissions, where you can add tiered or flat-rate commissions that apply when certain services or products are sold. If a customer books several appointments with different staff members, the tip will automatically be split between those colleagues.

Online bookings

On both the free and paid Appointments plans, you get a free online booking website so clients can book remotely. This is a complete website with an embedded booking page connected to Square Appointments and the payment system.

The website runs on Square Online, a website builder with basic editing options that make it easy for anyone to create a modern site for ecommerce. There are no website templates to pick from – instead, you are carried through different steps to pick e.g. a colour scheme, pages and images.

Image: Square

Square online booking page

Online booking page built with Square Appointments.

The website can be integrated with Instagram so followers can book through a “Book” button on your Instagram Business profile. The ‘Reserve with Google’ integration furthermore allows you to connect your calendar with a business profile in Google search results for a more direct way for people to secure a booking.

Unfortunately, Square Appointments doesn’t accept Afterpay when taking bookings just yet. But since Square has bought over the company in August 2021, we suspect it would integrate with Afterpay in the future.

If you already have a website, it’s possible to integrate the Square Appointments booking flow into this as long as your website platform is compatible (WordPress, Wix or Squarespace would work).

Card payments and hardware

With Square Appointments, card transactions have to go through Square, whether by a card reader, online or keyed entry.

There’s a good selection of payment methods that all Square users have access to without a monthly fee:

You can enable cash management and connect a cash drawer that is tracked in the app. External vouchers, cheques and other payment forms can also be registered at checkout.

The Appointments app works on iPad, iPhone, Android tablets and smartphones, but you don’t need a consumer device if you purchase Square Register. This is a complete touchscreen register designed by Square that only works with Square’s POS apps. It has a stylish, touchscreen-based card reader attached, but no receipt printer or cash drawer (but these can be bought separately and connected to Register).

Photo: Square

Square Appointments app on iPad with Square Stand and Square Reader.

What about ways to ensure your clients pay for their booking? Square Appointments deals with that through these options:

  • Hold card for no-show protection – The customer is required to enter card details while booking, allowing you to charge the card a cancellation fee within 14 days of the booking. After this time, the card details are deleted in the system.
  • Require prepayment – The customer is required to pay upfront for the service being booked.

Square has a default cancellation policy in the system, but you can create your own policy when editing these payment settings. It is up to you how much you charge for no-shows, but only up to $500 is allowed. Alternatively, you can choose not to require a saved card or prepayment.

Reports and analytics

No matter how you’re taking bookings and payments through Square, transactions are recorded in real time in the cloud. This data can be analysed in the Square account, emailed for print-off or integrated with external accounting software such as Xero and Zoho Books.

The Appointments app has a section for reports, transactions and payouts so these can be monitored on the go. Receipts can be reissued and transactions refunded from the app.

In the browser-based Square Dashboard, more complex sales analytics allow you to look at sales trends, division of payment methods, staff performance and much more.

Customer support and reviews

All Square users can contact support by email or telephone on business days between 9 AM – 5 PM (AEST).

Given the low cost of Square products, the fact that there isn’t a 24/7 service does not bother most merchants, but it does mean that replies to general queries can take a day or so to yield a response via email. Urgent issues are best dealt with over the phone during opening hours.

User reviews are generally positive because of Square’s ease of use, smooth payouts and excellent range of free tools.

Square Appointments in particular has had a lot of praise for its great value-for-money for individual professionals (no monthly fee!). It has also received some criticism that it may be a little pricey with more than one user, and the online booking website is not so flexible when you try to edit it. Moreover, the fact you can’t control when clients remove their card details from your system means you may not be able to charge for a no-show or late cancellation even when it’s a policy to do so.

Our verdict

Square Appointments is incredibly versatile, with a low barrier of entry for those on a budget. It doesn’t matter if you’re taking bookings online or in person, because Square includes so many different selling tools without additional costs.

The Square Appointments app can be used for selling both physical items and services, but it’s different from Square Point of Sale for its focus on the booking system mixed in with more general features. Consequently, it suits different professionals such as barbers, hairdressers, beauty salons, consultants, cleaners, wellness specialists, teachers and trainers.

But whereas Square leads with its general, interconnected payment flows, it lacks truly advanced customisation options suited for larger firms. Sure, you can integrate with other software platforms, but the booking flow is limited to Square’s (generally efficient, mind you) design.

We wholeheartedly recommend Square Appointments for individual practitioners and small teams of professionals, but it’s worth giving it a test run first if you’re a more complicated business with unique requirements.