PayPoint machines lead to controversy

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It’s a service that’s vital to millions of people and its supposed to be free.

PayPoint machines can be found in thousands of shops allowing people to put money on cards for gas, electricity, rent, television licence or mobile phone.

And the rule is that card holders don’t need to buy anything to use them.

But that is exactly what Paula West of Mandela Walk, Lower Manor, is claiming about Kiran’s Convenience Store on nearby Prince of Wales Road.

She said: “They want you to buy something first which I refuse to do, but it’s some distance to the next nearest PayPoint.”

Mr Kiran denied imposing the requirement and insisted anyone could use the PayPoint in his shop free.

Action

A PayPoint spokesman said: “Cash transactions are free to consumers and we take any complaint about charging, or demands to make additional purchases, very seriously.

“The vast majority of our retailers understand this rule and we get very few complaints but, when we do, we investigate them thoroughly and, if the retailer persists in breaking the rules, we can – and do – remove the terminal.

“In the meantime, there are half a dozen or so alternative PayPoint outlets in the immediate vicinity for any customers unhappy with this store.”