In an initiative by four Belgian banks (Belfius, BNP Paribas Fortis, ING and KBC), the first Bancontact CASH points have recently been launched by Batopin. So, since September 2021, it’s been possible to take money out from neutral ATMs. But why are the big banks gradually removing their own-brand cash points? And what advantages are there for users?
In recent years, we’ve been paying less and less with actual cash and withdrawing it less often. Nonetheless, access to cash remains vital for society as a whole. Which is why the big four banks have got together to completely rethink how we access cash in our country. Therefore, they’re setting up a more efficient network of ATMs detached from their own bank branches and are emphasizing that this new network will bring nothing but benefits for consumers.
Numerous bank branches have been vanishing from Belgian streets of late, making the overall spread of cash dispensers much less balanced than it used to be: one district might have too many, while another might not have any despite a genuine need… For its location plan, Batopin started with a blank piece of paper and considered all criteria such as demographic factors, local requirements, cash usage figures for the district concerned, etc. Thanks to this meticulous re-equilibration, the new Bancontact CASH points are spread in a much more balanced manner and access to cash is only enhanced: four ATMs from four different bank branches in a single square can be replaced by a single neutral, visible and easy accessible location, without any negative impact on the user's convenience.
Batopin is installing CASH points where they’re really needed and not just where the banks happen to have their branches. They will be sited in spots where people are actually using cash and where they pass by often, like in shopping streets, close to hotels & restaurants etc., at stations, etc. The fact of not being associated with a particular bank will allow Batopin to select the most useful locations in terms of residential & work areas, transport links – which differ greatly between urban and rural areas – and places where purchases are made.
Customers of any bank can withdraw money and change their PIN code at the new Bancontact CASH points, but the millions of customers of the "Big Four" will be even better off: when paying in money or checking their balance, they will benefit from a much larger network of cash machines (whereas they had previously been limited solely to their bank’s own machines).
Due to their yellow & dark grey design and the word CASH displayed in large letters, the new CASH points will stand out from afar. They will bear the Bancontact logo, a trust mark which any Belgian can now recognize with ease. So, goodbye to the patchwork of different cash points, and hello to a uniform style. The result? Belgians will easily understand where to withdraw their money.
Where are the first Batopin CASH points located (already in operation and planned)? Find out here!