Salvation Army kettles accept credit cards
Not having any change for a donation won't work as an excuse anymore in some major cities.
This post comes from Matt Brownell at partner site MainStreet.
The charitable organization, known for its holiday bell ringers and red kettles, will be getting a 21st century update thanks to Square, an electronic payment service that provides a means for anyone with a smartphone to accept credit card payments. Post continues below.
Square is a small plastic card reader that connects to a smartphone's headphone jack, then uses an app to let the user take credit and debit cards just like any other business. The company gives away the card reader and app for free, and makes its money by taking a 2.75% cut of all transactions.
While the payment service is generally used by small merchants and individuals, it's now coming to the charity world. Select bell ringers will be getting a Square device and an Android smartphone, and good Samaritans who opt to donate with plastic can swipe their card and enter an email address to which a receipt for the transaction may be sent. The smartphones have been donated by Sprint, though Square will still be getting its usual fee for each donation.
For now it's unclear how many bell ringers will actually be equipped with the ability to take credit cards. The organization says that the option will only be available in select markets, including New York, Chicago, Dallas and San Francisco. But if one comes to your local mall, forget using that old excuse of not having any change in your pocket.
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I haven't donated a dime to the Salvation Army kettles, in the past four years.
The reason is because, for ten years, prior to 2008, I worked the Christmas season, every
year, doing anyting from wrapping gifts, to filling out the Angel Tree cards, to checking on the bell-ringers, to picking up gifts that had been donated to outlets, around town, to making sure the bellringers were doing their jobs and not breaking rules, to picking up the kettles, to counting money and also helping to take the money to the bank.
Then, after my wife had been the Director of a Thrift Store for eight years, the Corps decided to push her out. She'd become too good for the belly-of-a-snake-height standards.
None of the other Thrift Stores were as clean, well managed or in control, as was hers and the idiots, in the DHQ, in Atlanta, didn't seem to like that, so they forced her to quit.
Not only that, since she's been gone, the Store, she managed has taken a nosedive. They're running a filthy store, with dirt all over the place. Their sales are down (would you purchase something, from a dirty store?) and the idiiots, in Atlanta are probably blaming my wife for leaving!!
(They probably took lessons in Obama's School of "It's-Always-Someone-Else'-Fault")
You said it Tim!
You're right Austin...this will start and end the '11 season...most of those bell ringers are questionable types the SA is helping.
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