Coventry City Adopt A Cashless Stadium

Friday, 28 March 2008, 15:47
2 mins read

Fans will be issued with payment cards which can be "topped up" with cash to allow supporters to buy food and drink inside the stadium.  The concept has been worked before and proved to be successful at stadiums in Cologne, Munich, Frankfurt, Hanover and Schalke but the Ricoh will be the first stadium in the UK to adopt the principle.

It has sparked discussions that it will be the first of many that will eventually head that way which could mean more hassle for supporters who would need to top up cards before purchasing food and drink.

The Sky Blues are running the scheme in partnership with Arena Coventry Limited and the Compass Group as part of chairman Ray Ranson's move to re-structure the club's finances and take a greater share of match day revenue.

Ray Ranson, chairman of Coventry City FC, said it was exciting news that the Ricoh Arena was leading the way in British football by becoming the first cashless stadium in the UK.

"These cards will lead to less queuing and faster service at the kiosks when fans are buying their favourite drinks and snacks," he said.

"We have sent season-ticket holders a letter explaining what to do from the Plymouth game onwards and fans who buy a ticket or turn-up on the day to the last three home games of the season will be given a flyer explaining what to do.

"When fans have gone through the turnstiles they should look out for the 'cashless payment' staff who will be dressed in lime green to top up their card with cash (minimum of £5).

"You then go to the kiosks to buy your refreshments and food and your card will be scanned to take the payment.

"If you want to refund the outstanding credit on your card, for one hour after half-time go to the staff at one of the cashless payment terminals in the concourses or you can keep the card to use at the next match.

"The complimentary £3 given to season-ticket holders must be spent this season.

"To ease people into using this new system we will also be accepting cash at the kiosks just like usual against Plymouth, Stoke and Wolves before we totally switch to the cashless payment card system at the start of next season."

The club are confident that the introduction of the scheme will drastically reduce queuing time and Daniel Gidney, Chief Executive of the Ricoh Arena said "We are confident the cashless payment cards will reduce queuing times which will give fans more chance to watch the football and improve the overall match day experience for everyone attending the Ricoh."

Coventry also plan to give season ticket holders a further £7 of credit for the cards when they send season tickets out prior to next season.

Stadium officials from other clubs are expected to keep a close eye on the success of the scheme and more details can be found by visiting here

Images courtesy of Getty Images, Athena Picture Agency and Swansea City Football Club.
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