The Benefits of Cashless Car Parks
In an era where contactless technology is at our fingertips, the shift towards cashless payments has been steadily gaining momentum. What was once a convenience is now a necessity, and the global pandemic in 2019 only accelerated this transition.
Today, it’s the most popular payment method, and it’s not just about social distancing anymore. The benefits of going cashless are manifold, offering streamlined services and improved support for car park visitors.
We previously wrote about cashless payments, but since then, the shift to a cashless world couldn’t have become more prevalent. In this article, we take a look at the cashless future of parking and share our advice for adopting digital and cashless solutions, but first, we take a look at the shift to cash-free payments as a whole in the UK.
Why Customers Call for Cashless Solutions in 2023
The shift towards cashless payments in the UK has been nothing short of remarkable. Over the past few years, more than 23 million people in the country virtually abandoned the use of physical cash for transactions, marking a significant trend towards a cashless society.
With notes and coins projected to represent only 6% of all payments within the next decade, it’s evident that the digital age has transformed how we handle money. But why do customers now favour cashless payments, and what has driven this change?
1. Convenience at Your Fingertips
One of the primary reasons customers have embraced cashless payments is the unparalleled convenience they offer. Digital wallets and mobile payment apps have made it easier than ever to leave the house without the need for physical cash. With just a smartphone in hand, individuals can effortlessly complete transactions, eliminating the hassle of carrying bulky wallets or purses.
In addition to payments, digital wallets provide convenience beyond just financial transactions. Nearly half of consistent users store their travel tickets, whether for planes, trains, or buses, in digital wallets.
A third also use them to keep event tickets and loyalty cards handy. This level of convenience has become a driving force in the adoption of cashless solutions.
2. Pandemic Acceleration
The pandemic significantly accelerated the transition to cashless payments and now we can truly see this impact. Since the pandemic in 2019, 86% of UK consumers have now actively started using some form of digital wallet or cashless payment in their day-to-day lives, and 19% of consumers are interested in exploring digital wallets for the first time. The pandemic made contactless and digital transactions not just a preference but a necessity for many – and in today’s world, it’s an expected service from customers.
Why Cashless Would Benefit Your Car Park
Greater Versatility in Payment Methods
By eliminating cash, car parks open the door to a myriad of payment options – Visitors can pay via mobile apps, online platforms, phone services, payment portals, pre-booking, or automatic payments (autopay). This variety provides unparalleled convenience and flexibility for car park users.
Offering multiple payment avenues ensures that visitors can effortlessly manage their parking needs. It also serves as a contingency plan in the rare event of on-site issues, such as a faulty payment machine or a driver without their card. With diverse payment options, car parks can cater to a wider audience and offer alternative solutions when needed.
A Smoother Customer Experience
Picture this: a rainy day, a harried driver, or someone simply in a rush. The last thing they want to encounter at a car park is a long queue, exacerbated by cash-only payment systems that struggle with banknotes and change. Outdated technology can lead to unnecessary delays, causing frustration for car park users.
However, embracing cashless options can transform this scenario. Contactless payments or mobile apps allow for swift and efficient transactions, helping visitors bypass queues altogether. This not only enhances efficiency but also increases space turnover, reducing congestion and enhancing the overall car park experience.
Enhanced Payment Compliance and Accuracy
Cashless systems, particularly those paired with complementary services in our toolkit, such as Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR), greatly improve payment compliance.
ANPR accurately tracks a vehicle’s duration on the car park, ensuring that visitors pay the precise amount they owe. This level of accuracy eliminates revenue loss due to non-payment or overstaying.
By automatically monitoring parking durations, car park owners can generate automated billing, further ensuring fair and transparent payment processes. It’s a win-win situation for both car park operators and users.
Precise Transaction Tracking
Cashless transactions offer businesses the advantage of accurate and traceable transaction records. This transparency aids in financial tracking, simplifying accounting processes, and reducing the scope for errors. Business owners can easily monitor cash flows and identify trends, enabling data-driven decision-making.
Encouragement of Increased Spending
Studies have shown that consumers tend to spend more when using cards instead of cash. With cash, there’s a finite amount available, imposing an upper limit on spending. In contrast, card payments provide flexibility and convenience, leading to up to 18% more spending.
Some consumers are even conditioned to spend more when they see a credit card logo, a phenomenon known as ‘friction-free spending.’ This increased spending can positively impact a business’s revenue.
The same goes for parking; it’s a much more frictionless decision to extend a parking session or leave your car overnight after a dinner, rather than having to constantly run back to the pay & display car park in order to buy another ticket.
Improved Security Measures
Traditional cash collections and maintaining change in machines can pose security risks at car parks. These areas become potential targets for theft and vandalism, potentially compromising visitor safety.
Adopting cashless solutions removes these security concerns. Cashless payments eliminate the need for cash collections, reducing associated costs and security risks.
This shift allows on-site staff or security personnel to redirect their efforts towards enhancing customer support or acting as a visual deterrent against anti-social behaviour elsewhere on the premises.
The benefits of going cashless for your car park are clear. From shorter queues to enhanced payment compliance, improved security, and a reduced environmental footprint, the advantages are manifold. Embracing this digital shift not only streamlines operations but also elevates the overall visitor experience.
At Gemini Parking Solutions, the UK’s leading parking provider, we understand the importance of staying at the forefront of parking technology. Our cashless parking solutions that are not only efficient but also secure and eco-friendly. With options like LatePay and AutoPay, we provide a range of choices to suit your specific needs.
Make the smart move and join the cashless revolution. Your car park and its visitors will thank you for it.