COULD this be the end of throwing a 50p piece into a hat? Street performers at the Edinburgh Fringe are to pilot a new scheme allowing punters to tip using their contactless bank card rather than their loose change.

The revolutionary new proposals have been welcomed by performers who say fewer people are carrying cash.

“Until now I’ve relied on cash contributions from audiences and I have definitely noticed a dip as the number of people carrying cash has decreased,” said Scott Hutchison, who performs as Super Scott.

Edinburgh’s Fringe Society has partnered with fintech company iZettle to become the world’s first “contactless tap-to-tip festival”.

Six “tap-to-tip stations” will be set up on the Royal Mile.

For the performers on the High Street, the Fringe is big business, which is why so many flock from all over to the capital.

An estimated 50,000 people come to the Royal Mile to take in shows from the fire jugglers, magicians, physical theatre, comedians, clowns, musicians, and others who make up the 274 different shows on the street every day.

Andy Meldrum, street events manager at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, said: “Our street events are open to anyone and attract performers from all over the world.”

He added: “Artists rely on the generosity of the general public who stop to take in their shows when passing through our street event arenas.

“Whilst cash contributions have worked for street entertainers for hundreds of years, we need to respond to the changing circumstances, which are affecting street performers all over the world.”