UK Diners Test Barclaycard Mobile Pay App

NFC mobile payments using smartphone

Waiting too long for a restaurant server to bring the meal tab can ruin a dining experience. Now Barclaycard’s Dine and Dash mobile app takes the delay out of the dinner payment ritual.

Barclaycard is inviting customers of high street chain Prezzo to ‘Dine & Dash’ in consumer trials of a new app that enables diners to bypass the bill paying process in restaurants. The trials of the technology – which requires customers to check-in at an electronic box on their table – comes as Barclaycard releases new research which found that 95% of restauranteurs would prefer their staff to focus on delivering good service, rather than spending time on taking payment.

Using Dine & Dash users store their payment details in the app and check in by tapping their phone against a colour-coded electronic totem at their table. Having finished the meal, diners can simply get up and go, with payment automatically taken from their stored credentials. The app applies proximity tracking to sense when users have left the restaurant and releases the table to waiting staff.

Diners can also check out in the app where they will have the option to split the bill, add a tip and apply a discount code. All diners can see their bill total in real time and receive a digital receipt via Barclays’ partnership with startup Flux. Dine & Dash builds on the ‘invisible payments’ technology Barclaycard trialled in 2017 with Grab + Go. That pilot enabled employees to turn their mobile phones into pocket checkouts to scan and pay for goods in the Barclays’ staff restaurants.

Nick Kerigan, managing director of future payments at Barclaycard, says: “Building on our experience in invisible payments, we wanted to use Dine & Dash to unlock a whole host of benefits for restauranteurs: from freeing staff up to focus on customer service to creating a better dining experience that increases loyalty to improving table turnover time – leading to higher revenues.”

Mobile pay-at-the table apps are emerging, especially in casual dining restaurants, and most operators and their wait staff find it to be efficient, as well as a way to turn over tables faster. The interesting and differentiating feature of the Dine and Dash app is the contextual aspect of sensing the diners’ exit and automatically taking payment. Similar to ride hailing apps for Uber and Lyft, this is another example of creating a seamless payment experience. Will be interesting to know if diners are inclined to tip more or less using this method?

Overview by Raymond Pucci, Associate Director, Research Services at Mercator Advisory Group

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