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How to Take Card Payments at Festivals

Rejoice, festival season is here! Time to unearth those wellies, dust down the tent and re-acquaint yourself with the noble art of face paint, but if you’re a stallholder then this is a time far more business than leisure. So how to make the most of it?

square reader for events

Worrying about wallets? Don’t.

The risk of festival punters losing their cash in a mosh pit or mislaying wallets while wrestling with tent poles is very much a reality of festival-going, and festival stalls offering an alternative to cash can save their customers from such a fate by making payments simple. How? Contactless.

Tempting as it may seem to create your own contactless system with pre-loaded cards or other seemingly simple methods, it’s not that easy without the know-how and experience to back it up. That’s where Square comes in, ready to save summer celebrations. With five countries converted to our contactless systems, and millions of happy customers, including market stall and food stall merchants who love our portability, we’re ready to bring security, ease of use and a little bit of style to festivals this summer.

A Headline Act

So, what do the wonders of Square actually mean for you and your festival trading? For one, it means you can take every sort of payment your customers want to use. The Square Reader accepts contactless and Chip + PIN card payments, and if you have international punters coming at you with magnetic strip cards, our back-up reader plugs right into your phone and makes international card payments a breeze. If your customers are using Apple Pay, Android Pay or Samsung Pay, even better, all they need to make a purchase is their phone! Basically, if your customers want to pay, Square makes sure they can.

Combine that with our POS System (completely free as an app, by the way) and you have stock tracking, employee management, digital receipts and customer feedback all in the palm of your hand. If you have multiple stalls, employees out among the masses plying their trade or special offers going, no worries, our powerful little app makes managing your sales a breeze - who knows, you might even find time to enjoy the festival yourself.

Let’s Get Festive

Whether you’re selling festival foods, holding up the beer tent or flogging merchandise, contactless is the perfect solution to your sales-processing needs. Bid farewell to long queues, packed stalls and being a stressed-out stallholder reluctantly calculating change. Contactless is the future, and the UK as a nation seems to know it.

Contactless payments rose a staggering 164% last year alone, and almost half of all eligible payments (£30 and under) in London are now made with contactless cards. Pubs and bars, with their quick-paced orders and demanding happy hour customers have become natural partners to the contactless way of life, and their total contactless payments rose 79% between 2015-16. Festivals are non-stop happy hours so far as your stall trading is concerned, so make sure you’re equipped for it.

Square Knows How to Party

We’re delighted to be joining forces with Boardmasters surf and music festival this year, powering festival purchases with our Square Reader. For the first time for the 36 years the festival has been running, Square in partnership with Visa will make sure the event is 100% prepared to accept contactless – a big leap from the 5% of merchants who accepted it in 2016. We’re bringing a revolution to food stalls at festivals as well as festival traders of any kind by making payments quicker, easier and more secure than ever.

Sarah Harvey, our UK Lead, is heading the charge into contactless, saying:

We all know that using cash at a festival is frustrating for sellers and customers alike, so we are excited to be partnering with Visa for Boardmasters, the first major UK festival powered by Square.

So, get ready for a summer of fun, and not of fretting over your festival finances with Square!