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Dish now accepts credit cards


A sign is displayed advertising new card machines at the entrance of the Satellite Dish dining facility at Schriever Air Force Base Colorado, Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017. The dining facility began accepting credit and debit cards Sept. 19, 2017. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class William Tracy)


The satellite dish dining facility now accepts credit and debit cards using machines such as this one shown. The DISH began accepting Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover cards, Sept. 19. (U.S. Air Force photo/Halle Thornton)


Schriever joined one other Air Force base dining facility run by contractors to accept credit and debit cards Tuesday, Sept. 19. Schriever was one of four "test bases" chosen by AFSVA (Air Force Services Agency) as an Air Force Initiative to receive credit card machines.

Edwards Air Force Base, California, led the way by installing machines a year ago.

First Lt. Walker Fickling, 50th Force Support Squadron sustainment flight chief, took on the project when he arrived at Schriever in November.

“It was a challenge because there was only one other base we could go to for advice,” Fickling said. “They don’t even fully know (the process) because they haven’t been using the machines for that long.”

FSS purchased the machines mid-March, and began the check-out process.

Once the machine’s lines were run to hook them up to the internet, FSS tried to do a test charge of $0.35 to see if it would show up on the collections information repository reports.

“This is the part we couldn’t get to work initially,” Fickling said. “The machines themselves have always worked, we just couldn't get them to show any of the charges anywhere in the system.”

Fortunately, Teresa Reinhard, 50 FSS information technology specialist, set out to get the machines up and running.

“The credit card machines had not been used for several months and went into sleep mode,” she said. “They just needed to be reactivated by reseating the network cable or powering off and on again.”

Reinhard explained the machines are not integrated into the cash register, so no credit or debit card information is stored.

Although Reinhard is pleased with the additions of machines, she expressed possible negative impacts.

“One possible impact on operations is since more data is being transmitted compared to a cash transaction, it may take a little longer to get through the line,” she said.

There are currently three functioning machines, and Fickling said FSS is working to get another later this year.

The machines accepts all major credit and debit cards, such as Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover.

Although only 12 Airmen used the machines Wednesday, but cashiers have noticed a steady increase in the use of the machines since then.

Second Lt. Clare Sakovich, 50th Operations Support Squadron student, has not used the machines yet, but said “they’re definitely a game changer.”

“I’m excited for those days when I forget to bring cash,” she said. “I won’t have to abandon my friends to make the trek beyond the RA to get money from the ATM.”

Although the process is still new, Fickling is proud of the work Schriever has done to make this project happen.

“Since coming here, I know everyone has said they wish the DFAC had card machines,” he said. “I’m really glad to see this finally happen. It’s been a long project.”

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