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Its a fine world for the cheque?

Picture the scene. I arrive last Sunday to participate in a sporting event. I park my car in a public car park next to the venue, a landscape of hills and woods. I sign on, warm up and spend the next hour or so plugging through the mud over hill and dale on my bike. I return to my car with the warm glow of satisfaction (well absolutely cream-crackered if you must know) to find - you've guessed it - a parking ticket. I look around and kick myself for not noticing the tiny, faded, well hidden signs warning me that this was a "pay and display" site. But hey, you make mistakes, I wasn't going to let that spoil my mood, nor the fact that the parking charge was effective on a Sunday. Look, the kind parking operators would give me a 50% discount on the penalty charge if I paid quickly. I reached for my smartphone and looked for the inevitable URL or QR code to pay... but found none, just a message advising me to send payment with the tear-off slip to the parking operator accompanied by a cheque or - wait for it - postal order - by post!

I've helped build services that enables pain free transfers within milliseconds between any UK bank accounts, defined business models to make this work in any retail situation and here I am confronted with the need to find my cheque book (i cant' remember when I last used it). Somebody had found a way of giving me a very specific kind of punishment, a kind of room 101!  I looked on the website of the German multi-national parking operator to see if I had any other options to pay, but no luck. All it said was that their business is founded on "three pillars", the first of which (and I kid you not) is "The use of state of the art technology". Come on!

Work to be done.


Comments: (1)

Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune 24 January, 2014, 18:15Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

After having had to give it up in its home country years ago, the parking operator must have wanted to relive its nostalgia for the good old days by forcing cheques abroad. (Back in 1999, when I opened a bank account in Germany, I received 5 cheque leaves. I returned all of them unused when I closed the account in 2003.)

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