What is a PDQ Machine?

A PDQ machine, when discussing it in relation to payment processing, is basically a machine that processes data quickly. This is essential when it comes to payments, simply because people don’t want to hang around in the store any longer than they have to. If you can make payments faster, then you’re going to keep your customers happy.

The old-style machine

When we talk about a PDQ machine, we are, of course, referring to the card terminals that virtually every store has on its counter. The old way of processing card payments was done by getting the customer to sign a receipt and then relying on the shop assistant to compare the signature with the one on the back of the debit or credit card. This was not very secure, and when we consider this method against what we have now, there is little wonder that the number of people using their debit cards has risen over four times the rate of overall spending over the last ten years or so.

The new PDQ

This is all due to the advent of Chip and PIN technology of course, and now we have these PDQ machines we can expect to have the minimum amount of credit and debit card fraud. Having a customer enter their four digit PIN number into the card terminal is 100% better than having them sign their name, as a fraudster is unlikely to know the PIN number that’s safely lodged inside the customer’s head.

The popularity of the new PDQ machine

With all the added security features of the Chip and PIN terminals, it is no wonder it’s more popular, but there are other reasons why this new way to pay is proving so popular with the general public.

    • Safety

      It’s much safer to use a payment card because if the card is lost the likelihood of someone using it successfully again is very low indeed. If a customer was to lose some cash they will undoubtedly never see it again; at least lost or stolen cards can be replaced.

    • Convenience

      Using the debit card to make purchases makes sure the consumer has enough money to pay for what they want when they want. It effectively allows access to all the funds in their bank account (including overdrafts) as and when they need them.

    • Budget

      Some people like to keep a close eye on their money and spending. With a debit card, these consumers are granted the luxury of keeping track of their spending through their bank statements. They can also budget accordingly by not taking cash out with them. When you take cash from a machine you are far less likely to put back what you don’t spend, whereas with a debit card you pay for what you want and you have nothing left over in your pocket or purse.

    • Credit

      Credit is still widely used and grants the consumer the ability to pay for their goods and/or services long after they’ve purchased them. This is good for those who want to pay things off at regular intervals rather than pay it all out at once, and also for those who are addicted to gathering points for this and that. Credit cards are giving out better offers all the time and people will always be tempted by the rewards and cash back.


So with the rising popularity of PDQ machine and the clear fact that there is nothing else ready to take their place just yet, any business starting out would do well to get hold of one by signing up with an independent payment processor. It’s quite a simple process and in many cases (depending on who you sign up with) it can take as little as a week to get up and running.