New 12-sided pound coins are being rolled out from today – but experts are warning it could lead to chaos in car parks as ticket machines haven’t been modified to accept the new £1 piece.
The Royal Mint is launching the new pound in a bid to cut down on the number of counterfeit coins in circulation – but many are concerned that it’s taken businesses by surprise and could lead to mass inconvenience.
The British Parking Association has revealed that more than a quarter of Britain’s 100,000 parking machines have not yet been updated to process the 12-sided coin, meaning drivers could struggle to park in many places over the coming months.
It could be several months before a backlog of ticket machines are updated – but, fortunately, the so-called ‘round pound’ will remain in circulation until October.
A website which lets drivers rent privately-owned parking spaces (e.g. on driveways) has said it could be the answer to the chaos, as it lets motorists pay for parking online. Of course, many public car parks also allow customers to pay using their phone.
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“The fact that a significant number of cash-operated machines aren’t ready for the new coins is likely to be extremely irritating for drivers, who will be faced with the inconvenience of having to leave their car to go and change money – or alternatively find somewhere else to park”, said YourParkingSpace.co.uk’s managing director, Harrison Woods.
“To avoid frustration as well as possible delays to their journey I would recommend drivers reserve their parking in advance online. Our platform allows drivers to book and pay for their parking through a secure system, meaning you’ll never have to root around for the correct change again.”
Our advice? Keep a stash of 50p pieces in your car to avoid awkward arguing with a ticket machine...