Tampa Bay’s Tropicana Field tells cash: 'You're out!'

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Florida’s Tropicana Field has eliminated cash from all concessions, ticket sales and parking, requiring Tampa Bay’s baseball fans to pay with credit, debit or gift cards at terminals that are also equipped with NFC for mobile and contactless payments.

The move by the Tampa Bay Rays baseball team and hospitality partner Levy means the St. Petersburg, Fla., stadium is the first sports venue in North America to become completely cashless, according to a Friday press release from the Rays and hospitality company Levy.

Consumers who only brought cash may buy a gift card at all retail shops in the park and from roaming gift card vendors. Gift cards are available in $10 or $20 increments, the release said.

The companies tested cash-free transactions at sections of the ballpark last year and found that the time required to process transactions was cut in half, speeding up checkout lines, according to the release. For example, at one of the park’s busiest concessions, the waiting time for a customer to be served and checked out was reduced from seven minutes to less than two minutes.

“This change will increase speed of service and reduce lines throughout the ballpark,” William Walsh, the Rays’ vice president of strategy and development, said in the release.

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