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Meadowbank 'cashless' from February onwards

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Dorking Eagle
(@dorking-eagle)
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Saw yesterday signs up saying Meadowbank will be cashless from February onwards.

Appreciate that cash requires extra work in terms of banking it, the security around large amounts of it, but I would have thought it better at least to 'encourage' card payments but always have a cash option available for those who rely on cash.

Just don't want to see a small minority of our fans (mainly older ones) who always pay cash disenfranchised by this - non-league in particular should in my view be flying for the flag for inclusivity.

"Why would I leave to join a League Two club? We're going there anyway!" - Marc White


   
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Baggy
(@baggy)
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I agree that cash should always be an option. Not least for Terry and his bucket! Don't want to make him carry a card machine around the ground with him. And the inclusivity point is a good one. 


   
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(@ethant)
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I didn't notice that but it is annoying. Sometimes I will pay cash purely just because of how long it takes for the payment on the card machine to go through. Not a fan on the whole phasing out of cash in society.


   
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(@crawleysth)
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Not too sure if this is a good idea. Sometimes I want to go back to kiosk for one small item so want to pay in cash. May not bother if only card.

Also I often see young children given money to buy something by their parents. How will they purchase in future? Also what if don't have card account for some reason? It is fine for card to be preferred option, but feel cash should also be an option at this level/at food and drink kiosks.


   
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(@georges)
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I'm dead against society going towards cashless, however having worked at venues in the past the arguments in favour of cashless for a business owner are too strong. People do spend more when using a card and a card transaction on average takes a lot quicker time than a cash transaction so sales volumes do go up, it also helps staff out massively as cash involves a lot of time-consuming jobs such as managing the float, refilling, reconciling till registers etc. It's reasonable to assume senior management will judge that the above points outweigh catering for a small minority, unfortunately, and there has probably been staff feedback influencing this decision.

When Chelsea went cashless last year I didn't see much friction, apart from the grief staff got from the odd "cash is legal tender!" type. If someone reliant on cash would give me the money I'd happily buy for them on my card. Like I say, not something I agree with on principle but got to be realistic that it's the way things are going. If it relieves pressure on the now huge queues at half time for facilities then that will be one tangible benefit.

This post was modified 2 months ago 2 times by GeorgeS

   
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Dorking Eagle
(@dorking-eagle)
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Wouldn't expect to see much friction at a Chelsea match, if you can afford Prem football, you're not really impacted.

This is about the mum who does a cleaning job on Saturday morning to get the cash in hand to pay to take her son to the game. Not going to elaborate any further but there are real people who watch Dorking who will be impacted by this.

 

EDIT.

On reflection, this does really annoy me. So I'm not going to edit or delete the above, but balance it with an understanding of the business need - there must be a good reason why the club would do this (surely).

That said, I've heard Marc say on two podcasts in the last week or so about the "mum who eats corned beef hash during the week so they can afford the game" (only for the team to play shit!) so I really hope that there is some mitigation in place for the switch to catchless to show some understanding for those directly impacted. Maybe one turnstile and one tea hut where cash is taken would be a good comprimise? Bit like the self service checkouts at supermarkets always have one that accepts cash?

This post was modified 1 month ago 4 times by Dorking Eagle

"Why would I leave to join a League Two club? We're going there anyway!" - Marc White


   
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(@georges)
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@dorking-eagle That's quite a sweeping assumption about those attending (like myself) PL football for whom it may be their sole financial outgoing besides living expenses. Plenty of older generation attending, who still prefer to renew their seasons in person at ticket office etc. The switch to cashless is one of those things across the entertainment industry that people worry a lot about in advance but turns out to be manageable.

Done a bit of reading on this and it looks like most clubs who have gone cashless have done so to alleviate pressure on queues. This reason seems the most likely, in-line with the ground's development plans. Clubs who have gone cashless also haven't reported a level of disenfranchisement significant enough to reverse their decision. Yes, it's very tough on those for whatever reason absolutely cannot attend a football game unless paying cash, but hopefully they can find a way to adapt. As a business Dorking can only experiment and adapt to what works.

Your suggestion about one cash-only turnstile is an excellent compromise though between the operational demands of the ground on matchday and those who wouldn't otherwise be able to attend in the short term.

Really sorry if it comes across as an argument! Not intended at all, but appreciate it's an emotional issue for many that actually has been resolved better than many expect. A single cash-only turnstile would be the way to do this.

 

 


   
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Dorking Eagle
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Not taken as an argument George - appreciate reading differing opinions. I just know a friend who will be directly impacted who is not at all happy so it feels more personal to me!

For what its worth AFC Wimbledon went cashless in August

www.afcwimbledon.co.uk/news/2023/august/cashless-stadium-in-operation-for-202324/

However they reversed it after a couple of games because too many people stopped spending money at the ground

- they now operate a 'semi cashless' stadium whereby fans can buy vouchers at programme stalls or the club shop which then allow them to by food and drinks.........

www.afcwimbledon.co.uk/news/2021/october/your-essential-cherry-red-records-stadium-guide/

"We are currently operating a semi-cashless Stadium. This means that most of the Stadium will only accept card payments apart from the club shop and matchday magazine sellers. Fans who turn up on the day with only cash will be able to purchase vouchers in denominations of £10 at the matchday magazine stalls and the club shop, which can then be used to buy food and drinks in the concessions."

 

Anyway I hope something practical can be worked out to help anyone affected

 

"Why would I leave to join a League Two club? We're going there anyway!" - Marc White


   
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(@crawleysth)
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I think it is just a pain for small items, and cards can be slower particularly if poor signal or receipt required. I instead bought my own small snacks and non alcoholic drinks with me on Saturday to save time. This seems to have been what happened at Wimbledon. Will be interesting to see if Dorking see a decrease in takings too.


   
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(@georges)
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@dorking-eagle No worries! I agree, the timing of Marc's comment you highlighted does make the decision look like a kick in the teeth too. If the club is set on going cashless I wonder whether, along with a separate turnstile (which on reflection would be really valuable on all-ticket and cup games), the club could also consider discounts for online tickets bought in advance to softly encourage a shift while still catering for those who would turn up on the day with cash.


   
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Dorking Eagle
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The £1 or more often £2 price differential for buying in advance online is pretty common at other clubs in this division judging by my experiences buying away tickets.

It's also a 'soft' way to approach a ticket price increase - if marketed well then the advance price can be promoted as being some sort of discount

 

"Why would I leave to join a League Two club? We're going there anyway!" - Marc White


   
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(@crawleysth)
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How did cashless go yesterday.  I went to Crawley yesterday which accept card and cash. However their card machine broke at half time,  so could only accept cash . This speeded up the service times/queue.

I also had a problem with Horsham accepting my card last week  Said card read OK  three times but did not go through so paid in cash to speed things up. Same problem at bar, barman said OK as card read OK, but nothing debited from my card this week so got free drink!

Sometimes cash is better!

 

 


   
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TomCalvert
(@calvertskans)
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@crawleysth They've postponed it to March I believe


   
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