Stadium food, drink card considered

The company operating Forsyth Barr Stadium is considering a "cashless tap-and-go" system, whereby food and drink could be bought without cash, speeding up service considerably.

Dunedin Venues Management Ltd development director Darren Burden said yesterday the idea was another initiative popular with respondents to a survey the company released last week.

Mr Burden said he had used the system at the Allianz Arena, a football stadium in Munich, Germany, and it worked "very well".

There were two options for the service, one done through a bank, the other not. The latter used a "proximity card" about the size of a credit card.

The card could be bought and topped up at various points in and around the stadium, loaded with the amount of money punters wanted to spend, and used when buying food or drink.

It only had to be held near a machine for money to be transferred, meaning there was no need to search for cash, get change, or use pin numbers.

As well, the cards could have a picture of the stadium on one side, a sponsor's message on the other, and punters came away with a souvenir of the stadium.

At a New Zealand stadium, Mr Burden said, he queued for five minutes recently, but at the Allianz Arena, the same length queue took one minute.

"It's far, far quicker."

It could also be done with a bank providing a similar service through credit cards, and Mr Burden said he understood Mastercard was considering the idea nationally for the Rugby World Cup.

A decision on the issue, which had the benefit of adding to the stadium's revenue, would be made closer to the date of the World Cup.

In the survey, 61.8% of respondents thought the system was "a great idea" and indicated they would use it.

Dunedin Venues Management Ltd chief executive David Davies said many overseas stadiums were successfully using cashless systems to reduce the time guests spent queuing, increasing the time they spent enjoying the action.

- david.loughrey@odt.co.nz

 

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