800 Year old Tradition Broken by PayPal at Covent Garden Apple Market in London

December 2013 saw the breaking of an 800 year old tradition of cash only payments at the Covent Garden’s arts and craft market in central London. Stallholders at the venue were fitted with PayPal’s mPOS card readers which enabled them to accept credit and debit card payments over the Christmas shopping period.

Over 8 Million shoppers turned up for the event this year. The move to introduce PayPal at Covent Garden was to reduce the congestion around cash machines, and make sure that traders do not miss out on revenue from customers that forgot or did not carry enough cash.

About PayPal Here:

  • PayPal Here consists of a pay as you go app and chip and pin card reader for small businesses.
  • It enables them to accept card and PayPal payments for goods, with no monthly subscription fees for the trader.
  • An initial purchase price of £99 is charged for the equipment and a fee of 2.75 per cent for each transaction using chip and pin or PayPayl Check In.
  • 3.40 per cent plus 20p is charged for each transaction made by swiping the magnetic strip or manually entering card details.

We know that consumers nowadays expect to be able to pay how they want, wherever they are, even at a market whether that is with cash, cheque, debit and credit cards or even digital payment through a mobile app. PayPal Here was created to help small businesses, like market traders, avoid turning a customer away because they don’t have cash or a cheque book on them, stated PayPal’s blog.

PayPal’s research has shown that small businesses, including many market traders, may be missing out on up to £800 Million worth of sales every year by not taking credit and debit card payments. The move spells the end for the traditional cashpoint dash, helping traders cash in on sales that would otherwise be lost when cashless customers promise to return but never do, they stated.

'We wanted to showcase what PayPal Here can offer to businesses, and what better way to do that than in an iconic 800 year old market in the heart of London at Christmas time,' said Narik Patel, Director of mobile merchant services at PayPal. 'We know from our research that shoppers don't usually carry more than £202 these days, so it's great to see that these traders will never miss a sale again because a customer has to dash off to get cash.' The Covent Garden Apple Market is open from 10am to 6pm, Tuesday to Sunday throughout the month of December.