Sports hospitality company Levy UK + Ireland has claimed a European first with the launch of Tap + Go, a new frictionless customer experience that has debuted at King Power Stadium, home of Premier League football club Leicester City.

Levy has partnered with autonomous retail expert AiFi on the innovation, which will enable supporters to purchase food and drinks without having to pay at a till. The technology will be available at King Power Stadium on Sunday, when Leicester hosts Brentford in its first match of the new Premier League season.

Leicester will seek to provide an enhanced, streamlined customer match-day journey for fans buying food and drinks at King Power Stadium. To take advantage of the new innovation, Leicester fans will be required to tap a payment card upon entry, pick up their items and walk out of the gates onto the concourse, where their card will be automatically charged.

Tap + Go is operated via AiFi’s AI-powered anonymised shopper tracking, which recognises the products being selected by customers before adding them to a virtual basket. Facial recognition is not needed and checkouts will be replaced by the installation of fully contactless payment terminals connected to digital barriers.

Leicester trialled the technology in the North Stand family section during Sunday’s pre-season friendly against Sevilla. The system was also in operation for the Community Shield between Liverpool and Manchester City at King Power Stadium on Saturday.

Rak Kalidas, commercial director at Levy UK + Ireland, said: “Combining a range of convenience and safety-enhancing techniques, frictionless systems have the ability to operate in a range of environments, including general concourse and hospitality areas – we believe that this will be a game-changer by making operations far more efficient, easier and exciting for everyone involved, and we look forward to rolling out Tap + Go across more Levy venues.”

Anthony Mundy, Leicester’s operations director, added: “We are constantly looking at new solutions to improve the stadium experience for fans. The launch of Tap + Go at our venue will enable us to take the fan experience to the next level by making it easier than ever for guests to purchase and enjoy our first-class food and beverage offerings. We are confident that our partnership with Levy UK+I will continue to make the future of hospitality accessible to our guests.”

Levy UK + Ireland is the sports and hospitality division of Compass Group UK and Ireland. The company last month announced a new five-year deal with The O2 in London, extending the partnership until 2030.

Image: Levy