Contactless payment to be Fringe benefit for revellers

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FRINGE revellers will no longer need to carry cash after a host of venues set up contactless payment schemes.

As well as Underbelly venues, the technology will be deployed across a number of kiosks and cafes around St Andrew Square, George Square and Princes Street Gardens.

The system, which can also be used by customers using “Apple Pay” through their smartphones and watches, has been installed by technology firm Intelligent Point of Sale.

Bosses said they were bringing contactless payment to the Festival having enjoyed soaring demand at Glastonbury and T in the Park.

Retailers can take advantage of the technology to manage orders, payments and stock control on the move.

Co-founder Robin Knox said: “The Festival is exactly the kind of event where speed of service becomes critical and contactless payment is so easy it can make all the difference.

“It is quite literally ‘queue-busting’. Why have customers wait, when contactless payment requires a simple press of one button on our iPad app, followed by the touch of a card.

“With the arrival of Apple Pay, too, many retailers and bars will be forced into adopting contactless systems, because their customers demand it.

“With fully-integrated Apple Pay-ready services, we can put the most up-to-date electronic point of sale system into the hands of every bar and retailer – big or small.

“I believe we are at the vanguard of contactless payments, which very soon will become the norm. It offers a simple process, speed and a seamless experience – a fully-integrated payment terminal and system like ours is far more secure than traditional chip and pin and avoids human error.”

Apple Pay, which launched in the UK last month and works with an iPhone 6 or 6 plus, allows users to “tap-and-pay” on contacttless pay points – rather than using their bank card.

It was seen as the first step in a widely expected move towards a mobile phone becoming a “digital wallet”.

Research has shown that the shift towards a cashless society is gathering pace, with nearly a third of people in Britain admitting they have used a mobile app to make payments.

In the UK, payment apps growing in popularity include Zapp and Pingit, with banks signing up to the services.

A number of institutions, including Bank of Scotland, HSBC and Barclays, accept the use of Paym, a mobile transaction technology which identifies its customers by their mobile phone number instead of traditional bank details such as account number and sort code.

The ING International Survey on Mobile Banking, which looked at the habits of more than 14,000 shoppers across Europe earlier this year, found that 30 per cent of people in Britain have used mobile devices to make payments.