This post was first published by Croydon Advertiser on 02/08/2017.
Thornton Heath landlady’s app means you don’t have to go to the bar to buy a drink in Croydon pubs
The landlady of a Thornton Heath pub has developed and launched an app which lets punters at Croydon pubs pay for a drink using their phones without needing to be at the bar – or even in the venue.
Sheila Gaughan, licensee of The Prince George, in Thornton Heath High Street, hopes her Gr8NiteOut app will help people who can’t make it to gatherings by enabling them to buy a drink for their loved ones without being at the pub themselves.
It also means you can pay for a drink without leaving your seat and get someone else to pick them up – useful if you have mobility issues or you just want your mate to pick up the pints because you’re paying.
Ms Gaughan said: “The driving force for me has been to design and create an app that benefits both publicans and their consumers; having worked in the industry for a long time and now owning my own pub, I know how to attract and retain customers.
“I also know how to extract money into the till, but it started to dawn on me that we could increase our revenue streams considerably if we could find a 100% safe and reliable way of tapping into the pockets of those that may want to share a great night out without having to be physically present.”
The app works by letting customers buy ‘pub credits’, which are like gift cards and can be spent on food, drinks and accommodation, via PayPal for a 60p charge.
Each pub credit has a unique code which both the pub and customer have, with credits lasting for a month before they are deleted.
The code can also be shared with a third party so the person paying doesn’t need to be present.
Ms Gaughan, who has worked in the pub industry for more than 30 years, explained that while her app is not the first of its kind, others have not done as well as hers has.
“There have been similar products on the market, but not ones that have been secure or reliable and they have flopped,” she said.
“The reason that this app is flying is due to its simplicity and safety. The transaction is between PayPal and the pub. The publican also gets the money in the till before any pints are poured or meals are served, so it really is a win-win situation.”
As part of the app launch, Ms Gaughan is encouraging Croydon residents to get their local boozers to be listed on the app by offering a chance of winning a £250 bar tab to spend at their chosen pub and £750 cash to anyone who successfully gets a pub to sign up.
For more information, visit http://www.gr8niteout.com/