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Today In Payments: Frontier Retracts $39 'More Room' Fee On Flights; Square Merchants Shift Online As POS Volumes Sink

Today in Payments

In today’s top news, Frontier Airlines retracted its $39 “More Room” fee to ensure an empty seat between passengers, and Square released a mixed earnings report. Also, PayPal reported strong earnings that included a record-breaking earnings.

Frontier Retracts $39 ‘More Room’ Fee On Flights

Denver-headquartered Frontier Airlines is retracting its $39 “More Room” fee that guarantees passengers would sit between empty seats after receiving criticism from lawmakers for “profiting from safety.” The airline is still planning to block out empty seats between passengers for better social distancing on flights, now at no additional charge.

Square Merchants Shift Online As POS Volumes Sink

Square reported earnings Wednesday (May 6) for the first quarter that showed slowing gross payment volumes, impacted by the pandemic and the shuttering of merchant locations, while the company also took reserves against potential losses. But the company also saw a significant uptake in its Cash App, even excluding Bitcoin transactions.

PayPal Processed More Transactions On May 1 Than On Black Friday

April 2020 was also a record-breaking month for PayPal in terms of enrollment and use, PayPal reported in its earnings report on Wednesday (May 6). Almost a week ago, May 1, PayPal experienced the largest single day of transactions in the company’s history — bigger than both Black Friday and Cyber Monday of 2019.

Grubhub Grows Active Diners By 24 Pct

Amid a rise in orders and an increase in customers fueled by the coronavirus pandemic, Grubhub reported a 24 percent year-over-year increase in active diners and an 8 percent year-over-year increase in gross food sales in the first quarter of 2020 compared to the same period in 2019.

Fitness Studios Forced To Stretch Their Business Models

Shuttered gyms are seeing memberships and on-site retail sales plummet, prompting many to shift their services online. But an absence of seamless digital payment experiences to complement these virtual offerings can deter customers from even signing up, says Ryon Packer, chief product officer at payment facilitator ABC Financial. In this month’s COVID-19 Business Recovery Report, Packer discusses why offering omnichannel experiences and payments is key to survival now and long after venues reopen.

Visa: FinTechs And Fast-Tracking The Road To Recovery

COVID-19 has shifted the world’s focus from offline to online, and to the need for creative solutions to new digital use cases. Terry Angelos, Visa's senior vice president, global head of FinTech, tells Karen Webster that Visa’s latest class of Fast Track startups are each doing their part to help consumers and businesses ride the road to recovery. Here’s who they are and what they are doing.

Does Airbnb Have An Edge When It Comes To Travel's Recovery?

Among firms hit hard by the pandemic, unicorn and tech-industry darling Airbnb stands out in a class by itself. The past several weeks have seen its estimated valuation halved, its planned 2020 IPO likely shelved and its headcount in the process of being radically reduced. But its evolutionary strategies might have a bit more luck recapturing consumers than its counterparts in hotels.

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