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Cash less is coming mid-July


jdf21972
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I was wondering if I might see this in the main park considering Camp Cedar is also cash-less at the moment with one of these debit card machines. The park going completely cashless is probably going to eliminate roughly 30 jobs if I had to guess, or at least increase labor efficiency overall by allowing for all regular park employees to not need to get/return a cash till during their shifts. The jobs I expect to be eliminated by the way are positions such as Revenue Audit, some money room positions, as well as saving about 20mins per merch/food employee shift on dealing with cash tills. I see this decreasing revenue for in park spending, the amount of the decrease being directly correlated to how frequent the debit card machines are disbursed in the park. I could see 2-3 per area being sufficient.

 

I am curious if this means that things such as the vending machines or change machines will still accept cash or if they'll put a block on the bill acceptor/remove the machine. In addition, with admissions/parking since you've technically not had an opportunity to use one of these preloaded debit card machines before you enter the park.

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Sounds like a good idea until the card machines crash. A while back I was up at Cedar Point and had no cash. I went to a food stand and was really hungry. Sorry our card machines are down right now. I had to go hungry for quite a while until they were able to get machines back online. Yes it doesn't happen often but when does not very pleasant. It does happen sometimes. That's the down side of it.

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1 minute ago, funpark said:

Sounds like a good idea until the card machines crash. A while back I was up at Cedar Point and had no cash. I went to a food stand and was really hungry. Sorry our card machines are down right now. I had to go hungry for quite a while they were able to get machines back online. Yes it doesn't happen often but when does not very pleasant. It does happen sometimes. That's the down side of it.

With a sole reliance on cards, I imagine the park would want to implement measures to prevent this issue from occurring. Sure it may happen, but when it does happen, it's not as long and also not as frequent of an occurrence as it has been.

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Today I had to wait an extra minute for the cashier to put coins into his register before he could scan my pass for my meal.

I mean it was only a minute… but I kept thinking “at a minimum they need a cashless line option” glad to hear they are making the jump.


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This sounds great and I hope more parks adopt this! I couldn't tell you the last time I used cash. Working in food and retail for 6 years, dealing with cash was annoying. People standing there, scrounging for change in their pockets/purse, handing me change after I've entered it into the register, making sure I have enough change before a shift, counting the drawer multiple times throughout a shift. I'm sure it will help with the flow of lines, although I'm not so sure how many people still use cash.

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People shouldn’t be saying the cashless policy prohibits them from using their cash. People who only carry cash, while it may be a small number these days, can still use their cash with the cash to card machines. I think this will greatly improve check-out at food and beverage locations as well as at retail locations.  The only thing I see as a potential problem is there not being enough of the cash to card machines throughout the park. Kings Island said there are going to be five throughout the dry park and Soak City, but that doesn’t seem like enough. I feel like there needs to be like two cash to card machines in each area of the park. This is not necessarily because I think there are going to be a lot of people using them, but the people that do use them aren’t going to want to walk very far to get their card. This policy was inevitable, and with the introduction of Game Cards a few years back, this isn’t super surprising.

I am curious, though, if cash will still be accepted as a form of payment at things like vending machines, the Game Card machines, the locker machines, or the White Water Canyon geysers. My guess is yes because cash wouldn’t actually be circulating within the park, but it would rather just be collecting in more machines. It would also be way too complicated to have someone get a cash card just to be able to then to get a Game Card.

Also, this is kind of off-topic, but have the ticket booths been open this year? I know that they will probably only be accepting card payment soon, but I was just wondering.

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I understand their reasoning but I question the change.

Generally I don't like adding additional friction to spend money for even a subset of the customer base.

They seem willing to inconvenience a subgroup under the auspices of helping the majority. For that reason, it reminds me of the change in the smoking policy last year.

I guess it worked for games because they still use those cards. I know I haven't bothered with the games since because those were always a spur of the moment thing.

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45 minutes ago, FUN&ONLY! said:

People shouldn’t be saying the cashless policy prohibits them from using their cash. People who only carry cash, while it may be a small number these days, can still use their cash with the cash to card machines. I think this will greatly improve check-out at food and beverage locations as well as at retail locations.  The only thing I see as a potential problem is there not being enough of the cash to card machines throughout the park. Kings Island said there are going to be five throughout the dry park and Soak City, but that doesn’t seem like enough. I feel like there needs to be like two cash to card machines in each area of the park. This is not necessarily because I think there are going to be a lot of people using them, but the people that do use them aren’t going to want to walk very far to get their card. This policy was inevitable, and with the introduction of Game Cards a few years back, this isn’t super surprising.

I am curious, though, if cash will still be accepted as a form of payment at things like vending machines, the Game Card machines, the locker machines, or the White Water Canyon geysers. My guess is yes because cash wouldn’t actually be circulating within the park, but it would rather just be collecting in more machines. It would also be way too complicated to have someone get a cash card just to use to get a Game Card or tokens for the geysers at White Water Canyon.

Also, this is kind of off-topic, but have the ticket booths been open this year? I know that they will probably only be accepting card payment soon, but I was just wondering.

I wondered about the geysers too. Honestly if it was 4 shots per $1 swipe it would be a lot more tempting than dropping quarters. 

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^ Is it back to quarters this year? They had changed it to tokens a couple years ago.

My only gripe with Cash-to-Card machines is that the cards can't be reloaded and incur fees after a few months of inactivity. Luckily, the point-of-sale systems at Kings Island support partial transactions, so it should be easy to use up cards with small remaining balances.

I prefer closed loop systems like Holiday World's where cash can be loaded directly to a season pass or wristband, but I understand the appeal of letting an outside vendor handle the cash system.

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I am surprised how far we have come with credit cards. I remember working retail and where I worked back then we had a $5.00 minimum purchase because of the credit card company processing fees. It amazes me that now I am going to be charging a $1.00 drink refill and the park will still be making money. 
I use a credit card 90% of the time for purchases…but usually use cash for super small things like refills at the park or drinks at gas stations etc…

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I'm not sure how to feel about this. While I do use a card for most transactions, it is nice to be able to use cash when I have it. And even if you do have said cash, seems like it's being pushed to switch over to a card as those card machines charge a fee after a while.

On a more positive note, those employees working the cash register (er, just "register" now) may have an easier time as there will just be credit/debit payments and this will eliminate any issues associated with handling cash (I know this as I've been on placed on register at times during my early days working in Food Service).

EDIT: Ok, so I just read that cash card can be used outside the park as well. That's pretty cool - it basically functions as a Visa gift card of sorts!

Also, a question with how this works- if you have, say , $10 on a card and spend it all, does the "92 days of inactivity" charge not apply because it was spent? Or, put another way, does the "92 days of inactivity" charge only apply to leftover funds on the card? Thanks for clarification. :)

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12 hours ago, IceePirate said:

I was wondering if I might see this in the main park considering Camp Cedar is also cash-less at the moment with one of these debit card machines. The park going completely cashless is probably going to eliminate roughly 30 jobs if I had to guess, or at least increase labor efficiency overall by allowing for all regular park employees to not need to get/return a cash till during their shifts. The jobs I expect to be eliminated by the way are positions such as Revenue Audit, some money room positions, as well as saving about 20mins per merch/food employee shift on dealing with cash tills. I see this decreasing revenue for in park spending, the amount of the decrease being directly correlated to how frequent the debit card machines are disbursed in the park. I could see 2-3 per area being sufficient.

 

I am curious if this means that things such as the vending machines or change machines will still accept cash or if they'll put a block on the bill acceptor/remove the machine. In addition, with admissions/parking since you've technically not had an opportunity to use one of these preloaded debit card machines before you enter the park.

Actually its more likely to increase jobs in Rev Audit- Rev audit doesn't go away just because its cashless. they are still handling money and transactions and such. they still have to audit the ins and outs same with the count room- they will still have to count the card machines that transfer cash to cards etc.  my workplace is transitioning to cashless in oct- most of it already has been and rev audit has only increased in workload not decreased. 

the parking will still be cash handling im sure for that reason for guests who maybe be from out of state or country who may not know etc but maybe limited to 2 booths. 

 

I hope all the FB whiners who are saying they aren't coming anymore hold to that threat lol i want shorter lines haha- but i've heard people say that all the time and a couple weeks later they are back... 

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14 minutes ago, MDMC01 said:

 

Also, a question with how this works- if you have, say , $10 on a card and spend it all, does the "92 days of inactivity" charge not apply because it was spent? Or, put another way, does the "92 days of inactivity" charge only apply to leftover funds on the card? Thanks for clarification. :)

Its not tied to a name so if the card is empty no fee will charge as who would they collect it from? its a generic visa card same as the gift ones it doesn't require registration to use so its only if you leave money on it for x amount of time because if you aren't using it you are holding space in the servers of the amount etc basically a storage fee is what it equates to. :)

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Waldameer in Erie went cashless a few years ago & it has gone much smoother than I ever thought it would.  They deserve a ton of credit for bucking the trend & doing it good!

ICYMI- Unless it's a holiday, Waldameer has no park entry fee.  The Wally Cards used in lieu of cash are also used for ride entry so their system is used at every ride as well.

Also remember- if the card system goes down it likely is an internet/ Wi-Fi issue and everything else is typically down as well.

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I don't typically play games at the park, but I remember them transitioning to the game card a few seasons ago. Do those machines take cash? If so, will they continue to? If not, then will a guest who wants to play ring toss and only brings cash have to transfer the cash to a card and then that card to a different card? :P

Joking aside, I think that this is a good idea. It increases efficiency, reduces potential theft or mishandling of cash, and probably saves the park a ton on labor costs, now that most employees can skip the whole cash handling training and don't have to bother with balancing their register at the end of every shift. My only concern has been voiced by a few others - is five machines enough for the whole park?

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52 minutes ago, King Ding Dong said:

Are 2 freestyle stands enough for the whole park?  Of course not, but they think so.  :P

Speaking of which, I used the Rivertown Freestyle for the first time Tuesday. It's pretty in there; you should check it out sometime! ;)

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12 hours ago, LuckyluvsKI said:

Its not tied to a name so if the card is empty no fee will charge as who would they collect it from? its a generic visa card same as the gift ones it doesn't require registration to use so its only if you leave money on it for x amount of time because if you aren't using it you are holding space in the servers of the amount etc basically a storage fee is what it equates to. :)

Good to know. Thanks! :D

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5 minutes ago, bjcolglazier said:

A boat-load of studies over decades have proven people spend more with a card, and less when handing over physical cash. Huge win for the park. This is not being done for our convenience...

There are also substantial labor hours involved in managing all that cash, plus shrinkage.  I used to carry a 20 with me  just in case, but after a few seasons of never using it I stopped.  

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6 minutes ago, King Ding Dong said:

There are also substantial labor hours involved in managing all that cash, plus shrinkage.  I used to carry a 20 with me  just in case, but after a few seasons of never using it I stopped.  

Shrinkage GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

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6 hours ago, chuck norris said:

The cash to card machines have been placed… two at the entrance (where the paper maps used to be).

Photo of one machine that was off. The other appeared to be up and running.
9eeb9d26b685d325d82959cd71fdd63d.jpg


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They also added an ATM under the IR, presumably to cash out the cards at the end of the day. 

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