No free ice creams in a cashless society: food for thought from a small business owner

‘We wanted to highlight that, in 2023, as a small business, we gave away around 400 ice creams in card fees alone!!’

I have searched for – and read this post – a lot since it was posted. Something about it really hit home for me. I couldn’t stop thinking about those 400 ice creams that they could have:-

  1. Sold. Obviously. Because, as with any line of work, we are all here to make money to shelter and feed our families.
  2. Or taken to a children’s ward in a hospital.

I don’t know any small business owner who doesn’t have a social conscience (is that even the right phrase?); who doesn’t want to do more for their community. We are all asked to provide raffle prizes for local charities, or support our children’s schools. And we want to. And we do.

So, this post got me thinking about our own card fees for 2023. I looked them up. If we hadn’t had to pay those fees, we could have donated at least 2 additional raffle prizes to local causes. We could have bought those 400 ice creams and taken them to the local children’s ward.

Before we owned a small business, I was always a bit suspicious of the ‘pay in cash’ thing, a bit ignorant. Now I know that, when small businesses talk about paying in cash or by bank transfer, it’s not because they are trying to ‘fiddle the books’ (is that even the right phrase?!). Believe me, we would be too terrified to even think about fiddling the books! No, it’s because we are trying to avoid additional costs from our small business to big financial houses. And we do this because we want to:-

  • Keep being able to price ourselves competitively and freeze our prices
  • Continue to pay our team the wage that they deserve
  • Be able to act on our social conscience

There is a HUGE CAVEAT to this. We understand that our customers and guests are parting with their own hard-earned money (sometimes quite a lot of it). We understand that paying by card allows a level of ‘security’ and flexibility. We respect that and that is why we ALWAYS offer card payment as an option. However, we just ask that you consider paying by bank transfer for all the reasons given (and probably more).

And, if cash doesn’t feel ok when it’s about a bell tent village (it’s a ‘big purchase’, we know), then how about getting that ice cream in cash instead.