We wrote on here back in June that there was a planned national rollout of Price Rounding (don’t worry – it’s on cash transactions only)
A confirmed date for the rollout has now been set by the Central Bank – and Wednesday October 28th will be the first day you might see your change rounded to the nearest 5 cent if you pay in cash.
As we mentioned in the previous report – the rounding is voluntary – so both the retailer and the customer must accept it; both will have the right to use exact change.
But – where a retailer is applying rounding, they can apply it automatically without asking the consumer – it will be up to the consumer to say if they don’t want the rounding applied.
Retailers can choose to apply rounding in a compulsory manner at certain tills , as long as the customer has some option in that shop to get their exact change if they want it. For example, shops could apply compulsory rounding at self – service tills and direct customers who want exact change to staffed tills
If a customer doesn’t want rounding on a cash payment bill and the retailer has no 1c or 2c coins – then the retailer must round in favour of the customer.
E.g. – Total bill €4.98 , payment offered of €5 , change due 2c , retailer initially rounds the change down to zero ,customer refuses rounding and retailer has no 2c or 1c coins – then the retailer must give 5c change .
We will still see 1c and 2c coins in circulation – but the Central Bank is hoping we will gradually need less and less of them as time goes on. It i splanned that no new 1c and 2c coins will be produced.
The rounding will mean in effect that all bills (cash payment only) will be rounded up or down to the nearest 5c – so for example ….
A total bill of €9.98 or €9.99 or €10.01 or €10.02 will be rounded to €10.00
A total bill of €10.03 or €10.04 or €10.06 or €10.07 will be rounded to €10.05.
The rounding applies to the total bill – even if it is one item.
We all know that many items are priced at 49c or 99c or €1.99 – so , unless a customer opts out , these will all be rounded up when buying a single item.
Shops could end up losing out if customers always accept rounding down but refuse to accept rounding up.
In theory – if everyone accepts rounding it will all balance out and neither the customer nor the retailers will be out of pocket.
Shops and other retailers will have to tell customers that they are using price rounding through in-store signage. This could include, for example, a notice on entrance doors or at the till. The Central Bank have said the will supply suitable signage to retailers, free of charge, before the rollout on 28th October.