The greatest festivals in Hungary — including award-winning Sziget — are introducing an innovative paying method this year. Thanks to this new technology, festival cards will be replaced with chips installed into the armbands.
The new paying method involving the armbands will be applied at the festivals of Sziget group, according to Portfolio. Sziget also confirmed that the festival cards were used for the last time in 2017.
The technology has already been tested at Neversea festival in Romania. Festipay, an enterprise dedicated to paying methods at events developed this solution, which solved ID-based entering and payment with a single chip installed in the armband. The website of the festival provided an interface for transferring funds from bank accounts to the personal chip online.
This system will be introduced this year not only at Sziget, but also at VOLT and Balaton Sound.
The chips in the armbands will operate with radio-frequency identifier (RFID) system. The chip will work a similar way to a keycard: it will contain information about the warrants of the owner and it will allow the entitled guest to enter the festival and the camping.
The chip contains the paying functions of the former festival card. This solution secures that guests will not lose their “ticket”, and it is easy to carry it everywhere. The price of the chip will be included in the ticket price, on the contrary to the festival card which required a minor deposit.
The chip’s account can also be balanced through a mobile application and at the venue.
Transferring the sums before the festival might prevent standing in long lines at the scene. However, people who still prefer paying by PayPass will still be provided with the opportunity to do so.
The system does not differ much from the festival card in the sense of operation: it is only needed to touch to an RFID reader unit, and the funds are transferred.
Besides comfort reasons, the chips are meant to further decrease ticket frauds and misuse of paying methods.
Festipay’s success is marked by the fact that they recorded about 7 million transfers at 22 festivals in 2016, while this tendency increased to 10 million transactions at 26 different events in 2017. Their main field of operation is currently Romania, but they have begun to extend towards Scandinavia and Italy as well.