Fines, local public service bills or taxes of less than 300 euros… Since July 2020, it has been possible to pay these “everyday bills” from the 12,400 approved tobacconists in France – i.e. around one in two -, in 6 500 municipalities.
This Monday, their confederation announced that the French have paid some two million daily bills in a tobacco shop, since the generalization of this service.
550,000 tax collections
The average amount of transactions recorded is 84 euros, while 28% of payments relate to taxes, 36% to fines, and as many to local bills (nursery, hospital, canteen, etc.).
Of the 550,000 tax collections made since the launch of the service, “nearly 60% have made it possible to pay the audiovisual tax, the other transactions concerning property and housing taxes.
Tobacconists are diversifying
Tobacconists have begun to diversify in recent years to compensate for the steady decline in tobacco sales, of which they have a monopoly and which still represents their main source of income. They achieve 40 billion euros in sales per year, including 21.8 billion from tobacco products, on which they receive a commission of 8.1%.
But these merchants also make a living from a myriad of other services: sale of games from the Française des jeux, taking bets from the PMU, bar and restaurant, sale of newspapers, snacks, vaping products, management of Nickel bank accounts and postal parcels, sale of SNCF tickets, etc.
Stéphane Pallez, CEO of La Française des jeux, estimated the results of this “generalization of the local payment service is very positive” by contributing to “the simplification of the daily life of users of public services”.