Hard times yield cash-only establishments

Aug. 16, 2010 at 3:54 PM
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NEW YORK, Aug. 16 (UPI) -- Cash only has expanded from want-ad purchases to restaurants and bars working with small profit margins in tight economic times, owners in New York say.

And observers say the cash-not-card trend is growing, the New York Post reported Monday.

Restaurant consultant Michael Whiteman said cash only is becoming a more acceptable practice.

"You notice it more and more," Whiteman said. "When times get tough, restaurateurs look to cut costs."

One Brooklyn cash-only restaurant owner said about 5 percent of his gross sales had been going to the card companies for transaction fees.

"The fees the card companies charge hurt the smaller venue," the owner said. "But it's a gamble. You are going to annoy some customers."

Some cash-only venues place ATMs -- with their own cash-withdrawal fees for users -- in their establishments so customers can withdraw cash, the Post said. But still, there's an aggravation factor for some customers.

"I've actually gotten up and left places that are cash-only," New Yorker Christine Hanna said.

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