And Finally Artist News

London buskers to accept contactless payments

By | Published on Tuesday 29 May 2018


The days of patting your pockets and pulling a sad face as you scuttle past buskers on the Tube are numbered. London Mayor Sadiq Khan has partnered with tech company iZettle to allow street musicians to accept contactless card payments.

As well as dropping coins at the feet of performers, passers-by will also be able to make a contactless payment as they pass. Readers provided by iZettle – which was purchased by PayPal for $2.2 billion earlier this month – will allow buskers to collect payments for a fixed amount of their choosing.

“London is a powerhouse of music, having produced artists from Adele to Stormzy, and The xx to Dua Lipa”, says Kahn. “For London to maintain its status as a global capital of music, it’s vitally important that we support the stars of tomorrow”.

“Busking helps emerging artists to hone their talent and gives them the chance to perform in front of huge numbers of people”, he goes on, despite not being able to actually name a former busker who went on to be famous. “Now, more Londoners will be able to show their support to the capital’s brilliant, talented street performers”.

Charlotte Campbell, a busker who has already trialled the contactless payments system, says that it was a vital step towards keeping street performance alive.

“If street performers like myself don’t adapt to the cashless society we are edging towards, we’re at risk of becoming a dying art”, she says. “It has already had a significant impact on the contributions I’ve received. More people than ever tap to donate whilst I sing, and often, when one person does, another follows”.

So hurrah for new tech ensuring buskers will be able to profit from their busking for years to come. Well, until new tech creates robot buskers to hog every performance spot, I guess.