April 10, 2012 – It was announced years ago but now it happened finally: the British Royal Mint has issued the new 5 and 10 pence coins. By replacing the older copper-nickel coins by new steel compositions the government expects savings of 7 to 8 million pounds per year. This is only one side of the medal.
The other side is the problem of the vending industry. They will have to pay about 80 million pounds over a two-year-period to realise the transition of making the coin operated machines accept the new coins. Yet in 2010 the industry complained about the problems they would be facing with the new coins being slightly thicker than the previous ones. Many parking metres and pay phones will not be able to recognise the new coins. Even though the vending machine industry has had time to prepare the less well off and rural areas will probably be hit in lack of new machines.
Read more on the subject in an article here.