The Royal Albion Hotel in Broadstairs confirms move to go ‘cashless’

Royal Albion Hotel in Broadstairs

The Royal Albion Hotel in Broadstairs has confirmed that it will become card payment only from January 30.

Signs have been displayed in the Albion Street venue to notify customers of the change.

The proposal has split opinion following a post revealing the news on facebook group All About Broadstairs with many people saying they should have a cash or card choice for payment but others saying cash is rarely used anymore.

The Shepherd Neame venue says card payment is faster, meaning staff then have more time to serve customers.

Royal Albion Hotel General Manager Marc Duvauchelle (pictured) said: “I can confirm that after careful consideration we have taken the decision to introduce a cashless policy at the Royal Albion Hotel from January 30.

“Our site is incredibly busy, and as payment by card is significantly faster than traditional cash transactions, this change will enable our team members to offer the best customer experience possible.

“The majority of our transactions are already by card, and we will be joining the many other hospitality businesses in the town who have introduced a cashless policy.

“We appreciate this change may initially cause inconvenience for a small number of our customers and have therefore taken care to provide advance notice of the forthcoming transition on our social channels and in our site. We would also be pleased to welcome any feedback from our customers as we begin to implement this change.”


  1. A terrible decision forced on the public by yet another big business without full due consideration.

    How many foreign international visitors will like the potential additional charge on their cards made by their card suppliers for using it abroad.

    • 100% with you.
      I’ll miss the place, probably only go twice a year.. Might only be £60 spend in total but it will go in a cash till else where. People need to wake up the harm and loss of freedom cashless society will bring.

    • The problem is that different businesses are taking directly opposite stances – so the unwitting consumer does not know what to expect – and needs to be armed with both cash and card to cover all eventualities.

      A separate report elsewhere states that the withdrawal of cash from ATMs has increased over the last six months. The reasons for this are two-fold. The risk of the spread of Covid has lessened, and many folks find it easier to budget when they have that week’s or that month’s money physically in their hand.

      For those on a fixed or limited income, it is all too easy for the money to disappear too quickly when all you have to do is tap the card . . .

    • Neither will I. I am a cash only customer, and get fed up in a supermarket standing behind someone who is trying to pay by card, which won’t work!

  2. Well I won’t be going there again. Cash is king! By the way, what will they do when the systems are down/there’s a power outage? Broadstairs town is not known for it’s reliable wifi…

  3. Not used cash for ages. It’s dirty and inconvenient. Not visited a cash point since before Covid.
    Saves getting the wrong change too!

      • Aha the official licensed buskers and on street charity muggers. Have card reader machines or they accept an immediate online payment it all happens in a few seconds.

        Cash is corruption, if only ever person / business / dealers or others paid their fair share Then our gov would have more cash for essential services.

        Are you an Arthur Daley type of character ?

        • Problem is, there are also many businesses (such as one of Birchington’s most popular cafes) that insist on cash only. So, we effectively always need to make sure we have both on us. Certainly when I’m out cycling I tend to leave my card at home.

          • Last year the then new owner of The Minnis Fish & Chip shop in Birchington tried to introduce a
            “ Cash only “ policy which at the time surprised me as a longtime customer
            That policy lasted approximately a month, if that long , before had he reverted back to both cash / cashless options .
            Obviously many customers there had let him know of their dislike to this cashless policy
            As for Zara’s , great consistently good cafe but it’s cash only policy can be a pain sometimes if you haven’t got enough cash on you at the time .

      • Give tips? When the bill for £45 (for example) is presented, you say “Please round it up to £50”.
        Then you wave your card.

    • If the staff can’t work out your change they probably won’t gey your order right anyway. I feel you should change your name also from seaside lover. The seaside round here are much dirtier than money.

  4. Dear Sirs, A lot of hospitality businesses are going cashless because of theft by staff. This is about loss prevention and nothing else. With Regards, Hon. GFS (Retired)

  5. Hmm how long will it last .
    Drop in customer numbers definitely
    Means business makes a loss that equals closure .
    We will see .

  6. I had an automatic reaction to say that we should have a choice which we use. But, then, I recalled that I found a 2p coin in the house yesterday. Better than nothing, maybe. But then I started to wonder how I might use it.
    I don’t carry cash anymore. Except a fiver that sits in my wallet for odd occasions.
    That 2p coin is still sitting on the top of a cupboard. I don’t know when I will ever use it. In effect, it is worthless, as I would struggle to find a use for it without accumulating lots of other coins until I had a significant amount.
    This reminds me of a point made during the “Should we join the Euro” debate.
    It was pointed out that we now have a global currency called “The Plastic”. More or less, wherever you are, you can use a plastic card to pay , regardless of the local currency. It’s only because you get ripped off by the Banks for their computerised task of converting from your own currency to the other.
    We are ending up with a global currency but no way of having a global government to oversee it. Instead, the Banks run the show in their own interests. National governments , just running single countries and single currencies, are powerless to stop money speculators from buying and selling different currencies, even wrecking national finances as they go.
    We “have the technology”,as they say, for a global currency and even cashless economies. But we haven’t got the democratic control over it.

  7. Fine until the computers go wrong, and it will one day and in a big way!
    Then we will all be truly shafted.
    Cash options should always be there, this is a very discriminating policy.

    • It is not discriminatory. The venue won’t refuse to serve you on account of your race, gender etc.
      I can’t imagine that a venue would not take money, one way or another. If there was a serious disruption in card payment systems, then a plan “B” would quickly be instituted.

  8. What a horrible decision and what a patronising comment from their spokesperson … “We appreciate this change may initially cause inconvenience for a small number of our customers”.

    The Shepherd Neame venue says “card payment is faster, meaning staff then have more time to serve customers”. Is this a subtle way of saying they can now cut down on jobs as well as turn away any “old school” customers?

    • Definitely they will cut jobs to save money .
      I give it 18 months cashless before either they revert back to accepting cash or it will close due to drop in customers .
      Should have stayed as it is .

    • Yes I total agree. I did a work trail last week on 8th January 9th January 10th January then the 14th January my name was not the rota for Sunday 15th to Saturday 21st January and I was meant to work there on Sunday 15th but with sort notice there expected you to work. I was doing a trail of kitchen porter. But the hours I wanted to do of 25 hours a week of 2 morning shifts 10am to 3pm then the other 3 times I asked was 6pm to 11pm. Kitchen staff and bar staff and kitchen managers seem to understand the hours I needed for the rotas

  9. Staff cutting ploy of some kind?
    Time will tell…
    The menu option for vegetarians is limited to one option
    “You can like it or lump it Madam btw we don’t charge for the lumps”

  10. Stupid idea! Very unwelcoming. The manager doesn’t understand the customer base. And, by the way, doesn’t know that mulled wine needs to be at least warm….

  11. So your standing at the bar .You have just ordered 6 drinks . But your card is declined by the machine. Yet you have cash in you wallet . So do they ask you to leave and pour the drink away or take the cash as payment.

    • Unfortunately, I’ve encounted many other places that are card only these days, including:

      Public toilets in London’s Regents Park, with a 20p entry. I guess those without band accounts have to go behind the bushes!

      A shop specialising in pasties in Stratford-upon-Avon. After purchasing my pasty, I then decided I needed a satchet of sauce, but even for that I had to get my card out again.

      This policy is effectively trying to kill the use of money.

  12. Nice of them to discriminate against the older people. No doubt they will soon be offering a Crypto payment system for all the hip young things.

    • I’m very much an “older person”
      About the only cash I spend is for my newspaper. Just about everything else is using contactless. It’s so simple.

      • Not if you get your money out in cash from the post office. One suspects that like the disastrous Sainsburys self service only store that lost so much custom it had to go back to having a couple of tills, that in the not too distant future cash will be back on the table.

  13. Brilliant decision.
    Glad more companies are doing this.

    I will definitely pop in and support them and knowing it’s a “safe zone” now is a definite plus.

  14. I won’t be using the Albion after 30 January. What would speed up transactions is using plastic but rather having their staff move faster and having more people behind the bar at busy times.

    • CORRECTION – Above comment should read: What would speed up transactions is not using plastic but rather having their staff faster.. (Must read my comments before I post! 😳p

  15. Last time we ate there the food was cold…it was only when the bottle of white wine arrived did we get something warm.

  16. Is it legal to refuse cash?
    In the UK it is not illegal for businesses to refuse cash as payment and, in the same breath, it’s not illegal for them to refuse card payments, either. The only situation where this isn’t the case is when a business is accepting payment for a debt.

    So you run up a tab & if they don’t accept your cash then it becomes illegal for them not to accept it as payment for a debt? So they have to take cash?

  17. Good idea, more places should do the same, not just in Thanet but all over the country. My reasoning, well, no money in the till will help stop the dregs of society threatening staff, and innocent bystanders, possibly with violence, from handing over the money in the tills. Who can argue with that.
    Go on I know you will.

    • I think part of the reason is the lack of banks. So it makes cashing up at the end of the day and getting loose change so much harder. Certainly there are NO proper banks in Broadstairs now, ditto Birchington.

      • People used to nick anything not nailed down, from their state-owned workplace in Soviet Russia, Poland &c., to better themselves, however slightly.

  18. Has anyone gone for a very expensive breakfast at Ramsgate’s “Little Ships”? It’s card payments only, and the snooty staff don’t tell you there are hidden charges of around two pounds automatically charged to your a/c.

    • I don’t think anybody ever goes back there a second time unless they’re living off company expenses. No need to tip them in cash because they impose a mandatory service charge, and you have the option to give them an additional electronic tip if you are delighted with their snooty service. I’d love to see their detailed accounts because you won’t see the same customer name twice.

  19. Not sure what all the fuss is about. The Yarrow up the road went cashless ages ago and won’t accept any cash at all.

    Having said that it’s probably safer as you would have to carry a fair old wedge of cash round to afford their food and drinks.

    • It’s very nice there though, one of the few places locally where the clientele still bother wearing smart clothes and polished shoes (well I do, anyway), and I am quite rightly addressed as “Sir”. It’s not like that in Margate restaurants like the Buoy and Oyster!

      • But given your comments about the Albion I’m sure you won’t be frequenting it any more due to its “cashless” policy !

  20. I think the choice of cash or card should continue. The computers systems can crash, will
    They accept cash then ?
    Also there are still people who only pay in cash, some elderly folk for example. I pay most things by card but prefer to have a choice

  21. Read a couple of days ago how margate has gone from a pit to becoming bohemian in a decade, let me tell you one undeniable fact, I was in margate for the first time in a year or two yesterday, all I saw was one very small pretty are by the sea front the rest of it has become a tip with homeless, drug dealers in the street, fly tipping, graffiti and worse. WON’T BE RETURNING, I’ve seen better deprived areas of London than this place so cashless broadstairs is probably so they don’t get robbed.

    • I did that a couple of months ago, and it really is dreadful (and for the first time, the lower High Street is now more derelict than the upper part). By a long shot, it’s the worst High Street in Kent. That’s the REAL “Turner Effect”!

    • Don’t agree. I go there a lot. If there is anything ‘wrong’ with it, it’s too trendy for its own good. Admittedly not as bad as Cliftonville, Greenwich Village or Fisherman’s Wharf (yet)

  22. All transactions will be digital in the future and the government will control what we can spend our money on! Quite frightening 😱

  23. I was just imagining a society where there is no cash and everything is paid for with a card.
    How do you give kids their pocket money?
    You could put it on a card for them but how will they know when to stop spending?
    The same applies to people in care homes who are given “pocket money” every week.
    I get that cards are convenient for most of us, but not for everyone.
    Would the Royal Albion actually refuse cash and risk losing customers?
    I don’t have a problem with businesses saying how they prefer to be paid but they need to remember that without their customers, they wouldn’t exist.

  24. I am another customer who will not be using the Albion in future as I continue to use cash. And it is a form of discrimination. Cash is legal tender and we should all have the freedom of choice of whether to use cash or card.

    The articles says: “Royal Albion Hotel General Manager Marc Duvauchelle said: “….. this change will enable our team members to offer the best customer experience possible. The majority of our transactions are already by card.”

    This change is not “the best customer experience possible” for those wishing to pay in cash. And if the majority of transactions are already by card, then how much time is going to be saved by accepting cash from those who wish to pay in cash? It is surely more a matter of The Albion not having to close up tills and take cash to banks that is the reason for this decision and that has absolutely nothing to do with the customers.

    Shame on you Shepherd Neame.

    By the way – B&Q are also going cashless – I think in March.

    • I went into B&Q before Christmas in Whitstable. No staff at a till bloody long queue as the staff was trying to understand the system that they had . Total chaos.

  25. Just went asda cafe and card terminal packed up ,what will this place do it a party of six spend £300 plus and the machine packs up ,March them out down to a bank machine to draw money out, good public relations, and the system will crash

  26. What a rude surprise I had last March when, after eating my pizza in ‘Travels In Italy (the erstwhile National Westminster Bank)’, I discovered they only accept card payments. I didn’t have my card on me. What would have happened if my partner – yes, female – hadn’t saved the day with her card?

  27. Cash is the legal tender for payments in UK, so whatever they say if someone offers cash they are obliged to accept it. If they refuse, then the customer is not obliged to offer an alternative method of payment.

    • That is not true.
      People often talk about not being able to refuse legal tender.

      “Legal tender” is only applicable if there is a court order debt.

  28. Even more concerning is the news this morning that most high street banks will have disappeared in the next few years.
    This not only impact people who won’t or can’t use cards, but small businesses which rely on the high street bank to deposit their takings and so on.

  29. The Royal Albion at one time was a nice welcoming place, but the way it’s laid out inside as really so drab it could do with new decoration and seating,at the moment not good. 🤔🤔

  30. They’re presumably done the numbers and feel they can take the hit. That said I’d rather the new manager focused on the tone of the bar service, which is entirely unpredictable. Sometimes aimiable. Sometimes entirely cold. Sometimes insisting you order something from a different counter. Sometimes happily bantering with colleagues (good, that’s nice to see) but then making no effort to engage with the customer on anything beyond a transactional level. It never feels terribly welcoming. And how you take a space with that much natural light and make it feel so dark and drab is something that seriously needs changing.

  31. This might be my fave comments section on here ever. The anger and complete lunacy being typed over a pub/eatery going cashless. Ha.

    Some of you are gonna have a really rough time the next few years.

    I hope IoTN print a story every time somewhere goes cashless. It’s been an illuminating read to see why the country struggles so much. Hopefully the younger generation are more open to change. (not coins though… they won’t need them 🙂 ).

    • You sound like a supporter of the NWO. I’m sticking to cash. Enjoy your microchip WHEN you get it. And you’ve presumably made a bee-line for your covid jabs long ago. Incidentally, what’s a “gonna”?

    • @Not impressed: It isn’t lunacy nor anger; there is a basic human rights principle involved which has clearly evaded you. I shall explain. With a card payment, the authorities know what you have eaten, where, when and how much you paid. With cash you don’t reveal any of this private, personal information. The naive argument of the sheeple “I’m not afraid because I haven’t commited any crimes” is neither here nor there. Which colour pill would you now like to have, the blue one or the red one?

    • @NotImpressed, one day the younger generations will curse us for allowing the banks and big businesses to bully us into ditching cash. And they will wonder why pubs are called “public houses” when they exclude major cross-sections of the cash carrying public. They will wonder why we are allowing newsagents and other small businesses to be crushed while giving a green light to major chains and impersonal online services. History will write us off as the generation of idiots. But it seems that people like you think it’s all a big joke.

  32. Three of went there New Years Eve about 10pm, and asked for Irish Coffees, was told “sorry, the coffee machine has been switched off”. We politely suggested switching it on again (they did)

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