- On Monday, Starbucks coffee shops were suddenly unable to accept credit or debit cards, or other contactless forms of payment, the Seattle-based company said in an emailed statement late in the day. A spokesperson declined to say how long that was the case.
- “Earlier today, some customers were briefly unable to pay with credit cards, all functionality has been restored,” said a Starbucks spokesperson in an email.
- On the front door of one Starbucks cafe, in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, customers were greeted with a sign explaining why: “Due to a company-wide technology issue, we are only accepting the STARBUCKS APP or CASH as payments. Thank you.” The company has about 36,000 locations worldwide.
Latte drinkers seeking their fix at Starbucks may have been turned away Monday if they didn't have cash, or if they weren’t users of the company’s phone app. That was not because of a shortage of syrups, or due to striking baristas, but because they tried to pay with a card.
On Monday, cash was king. The company declined to elaborate on the cause of the tech glitch, and it was unclear whether it struck locations worldwide.
The system shutdown came amid ongoing strikes by employees that started over the weekend, and that are expected to affect over 150 stores, according to labor union Starbucks Workers United.
Starbucks, the world’s largest coffee chain, has been expanding cashless options in recent years, including payment through its own app, according to the media outlet Inc.
Starbucks has been steadily moving to a cashless future with options such as contactless payments and mobile ordering. But despite the conspiracy theories, the company has not gone completely cashless, though that may be the policy at individual stores.