PayByPhone glitch overcharges customers

A glitch with the PayByPhone parking app caused people in the City Centre to be overcharged by as much as £16 for parking spaces yesterday.

The cashless app was launched in 2017 as a ‘secure’ way to pay for parking, however the error left drivers feeling scammed.

One driver, James Tilley, said: “I parked in the city yesterday and the instruction machine told me parking would cost £1 for an hour, but the app ended up charging me about £20.

“After this and the app always crashing on me, I won’t be using it again.”

PayByPhone was also criticised in February for costing 20p more to park than manual cash machines, and for their payment instruction machines being too dim for users to read.

The error follows the national issue of cashless apps being hacked and customers having their money stolen, however the council have said that this is not an issue of security, and instead a problem in the running of the app.

The app covers 8,000 parking spaces, and creators say that it has eliminated the service charge caused by cash-machines, despite the evidence of parkers having to pay 20p more.

The creators also claim to have resolved the issue of returning to your car to top-up the time limit for a parking space paid for with cash payment, although users have claimed that the app is often down.

The Council have said that everyone affected will be fully refunded, and that the machine has been made safe for use again today.

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