Cashback without purchase in 2000 stores by the end of the year

The shops are turning into ATMs: you will soon be able to get up to £50 in cashback without purchasing from thousands of shops

  • The service makes free withdrawals available in new locations
  • Cashback schemes for supermarkets and cafes require customers to buy something
  • This allows shoppers to access cash in stores without having to buy an item first



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Access to cash can be made easier with the help of an arrangement that allows people to withdraw money from the retailer’s cash register without having to buy anything.

After a successful 12 month trial, Link, the UK’s largest network of ATMs, will roll out ‘no purchase cashback’ in the UK.

The rollout of the system will expand to more than 2,000 stores by the end of the year, in approximately 900 locations where it already operates.

Any store with a PayPoint terminal in the UK can offer the service.

A scheme should be put in place before the end of the year to allow people to withdraw cash from retailers' tills without having to make a purchase.

A scheme should be put in place before the end of the year to allow people to withdraw cash from retailers’ tills without having to make a purchase.

These will mainly consist of convenience stores such as Co-op, Londis, Spar, Nisa and other smaller retailers.

Link expects thousands more locations to become available in the coming months and years.

Other existing cashback schemes offered at locations such as supermarkets or pubs require customers to pay for something before cashback can be offered.

However, this arrangement means Britons can withdraw cash or check balances in smaller shops without having to buy an item in-store or pay a fee.

Shoppers using the service can choose to withdraw any amount from 1 pence to £50 rather than limiting themselves to notes issued by ATMs.

Shoppers can find their nearest cashback with no purchase location using Cash Locator from LINK and Cash Locator App.

Many will welcome Link’s initiative at a time when the number of free-to-use ATMs is declining.

According to the Bank of England, people receive about 90 percent of their money from ATMs, with the rest coming from bank branches, post offices, cashback and wages.

Since the start of the pandemic, the number of free ATMs has fallen by nine percent from 45,000 to 41,000.

Andrew Hagger, founder and director of Moneycomms, said: ‘I think it’s a great initiative and it will help people get their money without having to resort to an ATM that charges a fee – this is more important for cash transactions with a smaller value, where the fee can take a large percentage in relation to the amount drawn.

“I don’t see it as an alternative to ATMs, but as an additional service that allows free cash withdrawals in new locations.

“As long as it remains free to use I’m sure it will be successful, but I’d hate to see a fee introduced for this service once it’s introduced – hopefully it won’t come to that.” ‘

In 2020, cash was still used for just over a sixth of all payments in the UK, and according to research by the Bank of England, 2.1 million people still mainly use cash in their daily lives.

In 2020, cash was still used for just over a sixth of all payments in the UK, and according to research by the Bank of England, 2.1 million people still mainly use cash in their daily lives.

In 2020, cash was still used for just over a sixth of all payments in the UK, and according to research by the Bank of England, 2.1 million people still mainly use cash in their daily lives.

The scheme was first trialled in stores in Burslem in Staffordshire, Hay-on-Wye in Wales, Cambuslang and Denny in Scotland.

Over 24,800 trades were made during the one-year trial period with an average withdrawal amount of £27.81.

Earlier this year, however, PayPoint became the first organization to officially roll out the service.

Tracey Graham, Chairman of Link’s Consumer Council, said: “Protecting access to cash is absolutely essential for millions of people who depend on it.

“No-purchase cashback is a convenient new way for people to withdraw notes and coins from their local retailer.

“We are excited to see this important service roll out across the country and we will continue to look for innovative ways to support people who rely on cash for as long as they need to.”

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