Waitrose has received a raft of complaints on social media following a card system failure which meant customers across its stores were unable to pay by credit card.
On Tuesday evening, one of the world’s largest providers of card terminals Verifone saw its system crash in France and the UK.
Customer service brilliance from @waitrose. The store manager is handing out chocolates to queuing customers… the catch: the chocolate was quickly followed by an apology that contactless payments weren't working. By then I didn't care. I was too busy munching my chocolate.
— James Littlewood (@Tw1ttlewood) January 16, 2018
To the people having a tantrum about Waitrose’s contact payment being down, you can always move your privileged a$$ and go to a cash point pic.twitter.com/jU6JTiEUo5
— Parveen Agnihotri (@Parveen_Comms) January 16, 2018
Businesses that use the system, including Waitrose in the UK, experienced widespread disruption and long queues as they struggled to inform shoppers of the problem.
Verifone released a statement confirming the outage yesterday.
“Earlier today, we experienced a service outage that affected connectivity to our Wynid gateway in France, and Ocius gateway in the UK,” they said.
“Services are now back to normal, and both data centres are now receiving transactions.
“Our engineers are continuing their investigation to determine the root cause of the outage. We apologise for the disruption caused.”
all the self scanners and half the tills are down at waitrose and i’ve never seen such an upper class uproar in my life
— CK (@cknowlds) January 16, 2018
Issues certainly not over. My card was declined 4 times and another one twice. Staff in Waitrose Wollaton at about 4:50 treated me basically as if I was a criminal. Tried cards now and still issues. Very disappointed with my treatment at @waitrose
— Dr Bennison (@DrBennison) January 16, 2018
Waitrose has also issued an apology to customers: “We were among a number of businesses impacted by intermittent failures to their card payment system.
“The situation has been resolved, however we are very sorry to customers for the inconvenience.”
Other businesses in the UK that use Verifone, which operates across 150 countries, reported similar issues.
Reading Football Club issued a statement warning that it could not take card payments at its Madejski Stadium.
Taxi drivers and numerous small businesses also complained of issues.