Cashless Payment Systems
Lady’s Mile Holiday Park in Dawlish, Devon is one of the first in the country to adopt a cash-free alternative for its guests. It recently played host to an open day where other park operators went to see for themselves the innovative smart card payment system it had adopted.
Lady’s Mile Holiday Park is a family run business, situated in one of the most beautiful parts of Devon and less than a mile from the ‘Blue Flag’ beaches of Dawlish Warren. It is one of two holiday parks run by the Jeffery family, who have welcomed guests for holidays in the West Country
This year, Lady’s Mile introduced the Embed cashless payment system to its park, into its two amusement arcades, the coin-op laundry, full service bar, restaurant and fish and chip shop and even a mobile tablet system which can take orders for refreshments from around the outdoor pool.
“The driver behind this project was the amusement arcade,” admits Jason Jeffery, one of the park’s owners. “We have always had a lot of kids who use the arcade – sometimes unattended – and we were constantly dealing with problems such as coin jams. Our engineer would spend five or six hours a day dealing with this in high season, it was a complete nightmare.”
In March this year, Embed installed the system, which works using smart cards, which the guests swipe on attractive colour-display units that can be attached onto the machines at the point where the cash mechanism would normally be placed.
The swipers feature full wireless connectivity making them easy and quick to install. The system also manages all the stock and inventory for the bar and restaurant as well as the redemption and merchandise for the amusement arcade.
When a guest checks into Lady’s Mile Holiday Park they can load value onto a card with cash or debit card providing a single card payment solution for the week or weekend. The Lady’s Mile Rechargeable Fun Card can be purchased and reloaded at any number of Point of Sale Stations and the Self Service Kiosk throughout the facility.
“The installation of the Embed Card System was one of the most organized and professional jobs we have done in a long time. Not only did the team install the system but they coached us on some great options to enhance the guest service experience,” says Jason.
Customers have taken to the new system, which is compulsory to use in the amusement arcade, but which currently co-exists alongside traditional payment methods around the rest of the park.
“We have encouraged our guests to make use of the new system by offering them an extra pound to spend on the amusement machines for every ten pounds they load
onto the card,” says Jason. “We also offer a system where they get a discount off their next trip with us if they spend over a certain amount.”
The holidaymakers appreciated not having to carry cash around with them all the time – or having to give it to the kids. They did not worry about losing the cards as they could register the cash they had loaded onto them and could get a replacement from reception.
The staff have also taken to using the new system. “It just makes life so much easier for us,” says Shane, working behind the bar at Lady’s Mile. “When you have a queue of people waiting to be served, the last thing you need is to take a debit or credit card payment or to have to count out lots of change. This way, payments are made much more quickly and efficiently. There was hardly any training necessary for me to learn how to use the system, it is very self-explanatory.”
The card system has now been in place for one full summer season and Jason feels it has been worth the investment. “We didn’t have a single problem with the amusement arcade all summer. That headache has completely gone,” he says. “It was a significant investment at the time but it has definitely paid for itself and already I would say 98 per cent of the guests love it.”
Less machine downtime, shorter queues and the ability to place and pay for orders while lounging by the pool have all increased sales at the park this summer. There is also anecdotal evidence that the smart cards have inspired more loyalty from customers who prefer to spend the money on their cards in the park rather than spending extra cash outside it.
In September, Jason and the team kindly allowed Embed, the supplier of the system, to co-host a two-day event at the park with one of its partners Bandai Namco, manufacturer of amusement machines and supplier of prizes to the arcades. The event attracted around 30 park operators who went to see the system in action.
Embed Systems are a total operating solution for any entertainment facility. Embed Systems allow for admissions control, machine monitoring, cashless operation of games and attractions, retail, food and beverage sales, loyalty systems, full prize redemption management, and integrated event scheduling – for more details visit the web site at www.embedcard.com.
For additional information on the Lady’s Mile Holiday Park, you can visit them on the web at www.ladysmile.co.uk
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