where the patron is doing all the connectivity through their own device, on their mobile phone, connecting both into slot devices and table games.
grimy currency So definitely there is some positive movement taking place.
” Justice agrees that the movement toward cashless transactions was already getting traction when the virus made it imperative.
“Consumer payment trends toward mobile and contactless were already indicating an overwhelming need to modernize.
The steep increase in those trends indicates that consumers prefer using a smart device to electronically manage their financial affairs.
Early adopters of technology that match consumer commerce expectations will get a disproportionate share of total spend,” he says.
Ryan Reddy, vice president of systems and payment products for IGT, agrees the Covid-19 crisis has accelerated the interest of casinos in cashless transactions.
“Up until now, it was a push from the suppliers to the operators and then on to the consumers,” he says.
“They weren’t really asking for this, at least not dramatically, in mass numbers.
And now we’re seeing that consumers care about this, and this is something important to them, and something they might make their playing decisions based on: Do I go to casino X or casino Y if Y offers me contactless transactions and X doesn’t?”
Mike Rumbolz, president and CEO of payment giant Everi, says it’s taken many years to finally get the casino industry ready for cashless transactions.
“I first started looking at cashless solutions back in 2005,” he says.
“So here we are, 15 years later,
and it’s taken a pandemic to really get everybody interested in the benefits and how we get this implemented into casinos.
But even that far back, it was pretty clear to those of us involved in the fintech portion of gaming that removing as much as possible the last vestiges of cash from the floor would be of great benefit to casinos.
” Even with the added impetus of Covid-19 and the desire for contactless payments,
Reddy says it will take a long time before a fully cashless casino can be implemented.
“Today, we have a full spectrum of payment options,” he says. “At the top, you have the most amount of contact and at the bottom, you have the least.
Probably the most critical portion of payments is having contact with the environment.
grimy currency We see it as sort of three different phases along that spectrum.
So you have less interaction with cash than you would in today’s world, but it’s not dramatically reduced.
“In the second phase, cardless cashless, instead of having a physical player card, you’ve got a virtual player card.
So it’s basically on your mobile.
You’re reducing the need to touch the card itself, but you’re still touching cash in limited interactions at the machine or at the cage in order to deposit and withdraw.
grimy currency And then in the third, which we call IGTPay, the player exclusively uses his mobile.
So you get the virtual player card in your mobile, and you’re transferring cash from a variety of sources without touching any cash.
” TITO-Type Troubles Rumbolz says up until now, operators were somewhat reluctant to go full steam into cashless transactions because they still saw a certain utility to cash.
“Unlike a ticket, which really only goes back into the slot machines and kiosks to redeem,
cash can actually go to a table game or a restaurant or a shop, and then also to the front desk of the hotel.
So there really is a ubiquity about the use of cash in gaming, especially in a resort environment.”
Comparing cashless payments to the ticket-in, ticket-out phenomenon of a decade or more ago,
Rumbolz doesn’t believe operators will be as forceful when moving players to cashless transactions.
“Ticket in, ticket out was of tremendous value to a casino operator,” he explains.
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