LOUIS BURKE | Culture | Contact

In an increasingly cashless economy, it seems the only use for physical cash is to place in a teenagers birthday card.

For regional cafes however, cash is very much still king meaning the ATM in the pub down the road is as good as 12th century Britain when it comes to producing said kings.

Many Australians know the frustration of going to the cafe counter to pay for their food & drinks, only to be told the venue is cash only and that an ATM can allegedly be found ‘close by.’ 

But just how ‘close by’ are these ATMs?

In an attempt to be like a VICE reporter, but without the pressure of being partially owned by Disney, The Betoota Advocate’s Louis Burke went undercover to discover more.


After enjoying a big breakfast without the bread, eggs or bacon (it’s cheaper) I left The Haven Cafe with instructions to walk to the pub at the end of the road and use the ATM in there in order to get the $11.50 needed to settle my debts.


Sorry, still haven’t left the cafe just because I decided to quickly go to the loo before walking to the pub. Was a bit awkward because I had to walk past the girl who just gave me the directions and now she knows that I’ve gone to the toilet. Not a big deal or anything.


Almost at the pub.

Purged of my sadness I continued on making a note to get a receipt with my balance on it as I have recently agreed to donate $30 a month to fight deforestation.


That’s right, there are actually people in the pub at this time of day? And they’re not just having a counter meal.

Luckily I am able to locate the ATM rather easily. And Christ what a sight it is. Forgive me for perhaps sounding a bit haughty, I just don’t have a lot of faith in an ATM that is advertising erectile dysfunction medication. Jotting down the name of the website I reach for my wallet and begin the transaction. 


After finally remembering my pin number, I request that the ATM provide me with $20 of my own money. Turns out to get $20 of my own money it will cost me $24.50 of my own money. What the in the frozen Viking hell did I do to deserve this? 

Realising I have kept the nice waitress waiting for payment for close to a half hour I accept the legalised mugging and shout “Yay I won!” as my $20 slides out of the machine. It’s just a bit of fun.


Mutually avoiding eye contact from the street pest, I make it back to The Haven Cafe.

I ask if I can quickly go to the toilet before I go. He informs me there is a toilet in the pub.


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