5 Tools To Allow Your Bar To Create A Cashless Bar System

Published on 20/07/2020 by Anna Hammond

A cashless bar system is a necessity in our new way of life. Not only do cashless payment systems help prevent the spread of COVID, but they are also more convenient for customers and bar owners. 

Cashless bar system in Australia

We’ve researched and compiled a list of the best POS (point of sale) systems, mobile payment systems software and payment processing software on Capterra.  If you’re a bar owner, read on to find out why you should consider switching to a cashless bar system.

Cashless payments advantages and disadvantages

Australia is the seventh most cashless society in the world. There are benefits and drawbacks to going cashless. Not everyone in society has access to a bank account and a debit or credit card. Often, it is the financially weakest that have the least access to banking facilities. They will rely on cash to make payments, and so you risk losing those whose only means of payment is cash.

However, more and more people have access to a mobile phone. In Australia, an estimated 72% of the population have access to a smartphone, which can be used for banking services and as a payment device. They’re easy to use, both for the business and customers, thanks to a great range of tools.

In addition to taking payment, they can be linked to other services, like inventory management and accounting, to help automate banking and record keeping. 

5 tools to accommodate a cashless bar system

In this article, we reveal five suggested tools to help bar owners manage their cashless bar system. When choosing our top picks, we made sure they:

  • Have a good reputation in Australia
  • Take payments through both smartphone and debit/credit card
  • Are suitable for use in bars.

For a full methodology, skip to the bottom of this page. 

1. Paypal Here

Paypal's payment system application
Paypal’s payment system application (Source)
  • Overall rating: 4/5
  • Ease of use: 5/5
  • Customer service: 4/5

About Paypal Here

Paypal Here provides card readers and physical POS hardware that allows bar owners to accept payments using either dedicated card readers or card readers that slot into phones and tablets. Thanks to this wide variety of supported options, Paypal Here is a good choice for both smaller businesses and businesses with high transaction rates. 

Its powerful system lets bar owners assign employees, add products directly in their app and keep track of sales, as well as sync with a Paypal account. It works with credit cards, debit cards and most major NFC payment services, such as Samsung Pay and Apple Pay. 

Price to upgrade: There are no monthly fees. Paypal hardware must be purchased and a fee of 1.95% for card reader payments and 2.9% + $0.30 for manually entered payments.

Read more

2. Square Payments Processing

Square payment processing
Square’s card payment processing system (Source)
  • Overall rating: 5/5
  • Ease of use: 5/5
  • Customer service: 5/5

About Square Payments Processing

Square Payments Processing supports a wide range of POS and online payment processing solutions. All from within the app itself, Square allows bar owners to:

  • Take payments by card
  • Accept contactless payments
  • Take payments online
  • Key in payments manually
  • Set up appointments with auto-billing
  • Create invoices. 

Square also sells a range of purpose-built hardware, from standalone card readers to POS terminals with touch screens, receipt printers and more. Customers with premium plans also get 24/7 customer support.

Price to upgrade: Square offers a free 30-day trial, after which it costs $129/m per location for an unlimited number of terminals.

Read more

3. Kounta

Kounta spend analysis
Kounta’s reporting functionality in its payment processing system (Source)
  • Overall rating: 4/5
  • Ease of use: 3/5
  • Customer service: 5/5

About Kounta

Kounta is custom-made for the hospitality industry, and it works well for bars. This is because of its app interface, which has a transaction flow that users say is easy to follow for both staff and customers. The workflow is customisable, and it also supports integration with other technology, like accounting software. A particularly useful feature is its ability to use past transaction data to predict future sales data, helping bar owners stay on top of demand. All paid plans also include 24/7 customer support.

Although Kounta works on a range of different operating systems, they do not provide any dedicated hardware and instead, you must find compatible hardware, such as tablets and receipt printers, yourself. They do sell some compatible hardware themselves, but the prices are higher than can be found elsewhere.

Price to upgrade: There is a free trial version of Kounta, with paid subscription plans starting at $50/m.

Read more

4. Toast

Toast bar payment system
Toast card payment system (Source)
  • Overall rating: 3/5
  • Ease of use: 3/5
  • Customer service: 4/5

About Toast

Toast is a POS system specifically designed for the food-service industry. While it is primarily aimed at restaurants, it also works well for bars, as the mobile POS options allow staff and customers to take orders and accept payments from anywhere in your bar. Toast also provides a range of custom-built hardware which looks good and suits a variety of positions, such as tills with customer-facing screens and handheld devices for taking orders and payments directly at the table.

Price to upgrade: Toast does not offer a free version or a trial. Prices start from $79/m with one-time setup fees of $999 and up for hardware and setup.

Read more

5. Epos NOW

Epos NOW payment processing system
Epos NOW payment processing system (Source)
  • Overall rating: 5/5
  • Ease of use: 5/5
  • Customer service: 5/5

About Epos NOW

Epos NOW provides a range of POS hardware and software that makes it ideal for bars. It includes back-office management, reporting tools, inventory management, customer profiles and even allows staff to clock in and out, as well as track staff performance. 

Epos NOW sells branded hardware, but their tools also work on iOS and Android devices. 24/7 customer support is available, as well as one on one training and coaching.

Price to upgrade: Epos NOW has a free version and a free trial. A paid version including a full hardware system costs $2,299 upfront or $99/m.

Read more

Looking for bar POS software? Check out our catalogue.

Methodology:

To make this list of five tools, Capterra chose from the following software categories:  POS (point of sale) systems, mobile payment systems software and payment processing software. When choosing these systems, we made sure they:

  • Had a minimum overall rating of 4.5/5
  • Had a minimum ease-of-use rating and customer service rating of 4/5
  • Accept mobile payments (including debit and credit cards) and in-person payments
  • Had a high number of searches in Australia 
  • Had an Australian market.

Based on these criteria, we were able to select five tools that would work well in a bar environment.

This article may refer to products, programs or services that are not available in your country, or that may be restricted under the laws or regulations of your country. We suggest that you consult the software provider directly for information regarding product availability and compliance with local laws.