Card readers

People carry much less cash than ever before, and increasingly payments for just about everything are made by card or online


On this page we explore the benefits of card readers in a bit more depth, including:

Why use contactless payments
How to decide what type of card reader to use
Card readers available
Comparing card readers


Why use contactless payments

The ability to take payments or receive donations with a contactless card reader is important for churches.  There are fewer transactions by cash than card generally, and the number of cash transactions is decreasing year on year.
While planned giving by direct debit or standing order will be always be the most important income stream for a church, there are some good reasons to have contactless and online capability:

•    It provides an opportunity for non-regular attenders at Christmas, Easter, Remembrance Sunday, weddings, baptisms, funerals and the like to donate.
•    People who come to informal services such as Messy Church may donate by card when they come.
•    You will be able to take card payments at fundraising events and concerts.
•    You will be able to accept donations from visitors who aren’t carrying cash.
•    If you are still providing online services, you can accept online donations.


How to decide which card reader to use

This will depend on a few things.
•    Do you have wifi or a good mobile phone signal in your church?
•    Do you want to be able to leave the device unattended?
•    Do you want your card reader to be able to take payments (selling tickets, for example) or purely for donations?
•    How much do you want to spend?
You will want to decide whether the card reader needs to be secured, or whether portable is more important.  Also whether you prefer ‘tap and go’ or want someone there operating the device.

A further consideration is whether you want your reader configured by your supplier (‘works out of the box’) or to configure it yourself.

A note on broadband.  Some churches have difficulty getting a broadband connection because they don’t have a postcode.  Here is some guidance on what to do Parish Buying - Getting broadband service for your church



Card readers available

Detailed information about all the card readers can be found at Parish Buying (, the Church of England’s procurement service.  You don’t have to get your card reader through them, but they have negotiated some good rates with a number of suppliers, which will be difficult to match elsewhere.
The following card readers are available through Parish Buying.  At the end of this document are tables comparing the costs of these readers.


Connectivity needed

CollecTin More (using Give A Little app)
Payaz GivingStation (using Give A Little app)
GWD Slim
GWD Midi/Skinny/Maxi


For taking payments

SumUp Air – This works with an app on a mobile phone or tablet
SumUp Solo – This doesn’t need to be connected to an app.


Comparing card readers

These devices are available at discounted rates through Parish Buying, the Church of England’s procurement service.  Parish Buying can be accessed at

A chart comparing the cost of card readers


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