Changing payment options have always been a staple of the vending industry. As cultural reliance on different forms of payments have changed over time, so has payment acceptance for vending machines. Coin mechanisms gave way to bill validators, which are making way for cashless payment acceptors. In the grand scheme of things, this evolution makes sense. Vending has always been about convenience, and for the increasing population of consumers who don’t carry cash, the ability to use cashless payments is an absolute¬†necessity. In fact, American adults under 30 dislike using cash so much that 51% of them use credit or debit cards for purchases – even for transactions under $5 (the price point where vending lives).

We know that accepting cashless payments is a must to appeal to younger Americans, but what are the tangible benefits of installing a vending card reader? We looked at the data to see just how beneficial cashless vending really is. The results are substantial: operators who embrace cashless have average ticket transactions of $1.60 – that is nearly 40 cents higher than their cash counterparts. The reason? Consumers don’t feel the same pain of spending when they use cards over cash. After all, swiping a card takes less thought than physically giving away paper money.

Furthermore, in a study of machines equipped with Parlevel Pay cashless readers in San Antonio, Texas, average machine sales per service increased 42%  when a vending card reader was installed. 32% of the increase came from cashless payments while 10% of the increase was attributed to growing cash sales. Amazingly, cashless did not cannibalize cash sales, but rather increased them. Since there are now more ways to pay at the machine, more people are using the vending machine Рwhether they have cash or not, they know the machine will accommodate them. Furthermore, cashless technology can increase a machines image of reliability and attract more fickle customers. The net sales increases from cashless amount to an average machine collection of $128 every time a machine is serviced Рnearly $40 more than machines without cashless capabilities.

These gains are substantial and should make any vending operator seriously think about adopting vending card readers for the machines. However, it is important to prioritize which machines would benefit from cashless the most in order to speed up return on investment. Locations that are frequented by younger consumers and transit areas are the best bets for rapid cashless success. Schools, offices, hospitals, hotels, and airports are some of the areas where cashless performs the best. Lastly, not all cashless readers are created equal. As mobile wallets like Apple Pay and Android Pay become more common place, it is important for cashless readers to accept more than just credit and debit cards.

Check out this infographic on the benefits of a vending card reader to see how you and your operation can benefit from cashless vending. For more information on cashless readers, please visit

Cashless Vending Infographic