Are ATMs the Right Channel for Serving the Under-Banked?

by Edward O'Brien 0

A high school in the West Midlands of England announced it will no longer require students to bring cash to pay for school lunches as pupils instead will use their fingerprint.

“We think that the system will have benefits for pupils, parents and the school. It will avoid the need to operate cash tills and therefore will speed up dinner queues. Furthermore, students entitled to free school meals will no longer have to feel a stigma when standing at the till as all students will be treated the same…the system has many benefits and everyone is looking forward to using it,” says Tony Bayliss, the school’s Business Manager.

The benefits, however, do not stop there. The school expects the scheme will reduce the risk of bullying and ensure students are spending money at the school rather than leaving the premises to eat at local fast food stores.

With fewer cash point of sale terminals speeding up the overall payment process, students can eat and enjoy more of their lunch break. Retailers are just beginning to capitalize on cost savings from a speedier payment process. KFC last week announced it was teaming up with AIRTAG in the U.K. (may want to link wrapper on that subject here), to enable customers making payments through the company’s mobile application to be placed in a “fast track” which would see them receive their food before others paying at the traditional point of sale. Last year, PayPal and McDonalds trialed a similar program in France.

While Paulet High School may be just the first school to roll out a cashless payment system, it is reflective of broader payment industry trends which have seen the use of cash decline significantly. SmartDebit, a leading electronic payment processor in the U.K., believes success at Paulet High School will lead to further cashless deployment systems at schools around Europe and perhaps the world.

“Carrying money to school can often cause problems including pupils spending it on other items, forgetting it or bullying. Fingerprint based, cashless transactions completely eliminate this as well as giving parents control and the opportunity to top up online or in selected stores,” said the company through a spokesperson.

As companies continue to improve on the traditional POS experience and consumers are increasingly comfortable with electronic payments, expect more age old cash payment hallmark experiences like paying for school lunches to be replaced.

Click here to read more from Yahoo News.

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