The Principality Stadium in Cardiff will make a significant move towards becoming a cashless venue at Wales’ Guinness Six Nations meeting with Italy this weekend.
Stadium management said this in direct response to consumer purchasing habits.
In recent years the stadium has seen an increase in the use of card payments at the point of purchase across the 65 food & beverage (F&B) units throughout the stadium to the extent that the Wales and Wales Women double-header against the Barbarians at the end of last year saw 85% of all transactions in this area made using a credit or debit card.
The increase in cashless units quickens service and shortens waiting time, enabling supporters to be served more efficiently and to return to their seats to ensure they don’t miss a moment of the action.
All F&B units support the following payment methods: Visa, Visa Electron, Maestro, Mastercard, Applepay and Android Pay and can be found around the concourses on each level of the stadium.
Tracey Maxwell, general manager, Principality Stadium Experience, said:
We have never felt the need to enforce cashless at Principality Stadium preferring to be led by our consumers. Once they felt comfortable with a variety of payment methods and it’s clear that the number of card payments has increased, we have converted more units.
Supporters will still be able to use cash at eight F&B units within the stadium: four units on level 3, two units on level 4 and two units on level 6.
This shift echoes part of a larger trend as customers get increasingly comfortable making contactless payments, supported by the continued roll-out of card acceptance devices.
In 2018 alone, the number of contactless payments made in the UK increased by 31% and according to independent survey by Transaction Network Survey, 68% of consumers said they rarely used cash (83% prefer using credit/debit card and 17% use their smartphone or wearable device).
Welsh Rugby Union chief executive Martyn Phillips has led the way in embracing and reacting to supporter feedback and last summer introduced a newly permanent Alcohol Free Zone (AFZ) into the Principality Stadium’s North Stand, which welcome supporters who prefer not to consume alcohol during matches. He said:
We are determined to listen to our visitors and examine all available options to continue to improve our customer experience.
The AFZ trial is a great example of our modern iconic Stadium reacting to feedback and finding a workable solution which caters for a varying range of supporter requirements and ‘going cashless’ is a further extension of this responsive attitude to our customers.