Платёжный терминал

by Don  

Image courtesy
of Wikipedia

One of the slickest aspects of Russian life these days are certain machines in public places that look sort of like bank machines, but their main purpose is rather the opposite: instead of disbursing money to the person who walks up, they take money from the customer which is then applied to bills. You can pay for your cell phone at these places. You can pay for your internet services. You can pay for water and electricity. You can sometimes even deposit money into your bank accounts through them. It's pretty simple. You walk up. Choose the service you want to pay. Enter your account number. Stick in some cash. Take your receipt. Voilà, you're done!

Officially such a machine is called a платёжный терминал "a payment terminal." You can find them in the subway. You can find them in the underground pedestrian paths under big streets. Heck, you can even find one at the 24-hour fast-food place not a block from where I'm staying. Despite the official name, sometimes people simply call them автомат "automated machine" or sometimes even more sloppily банкомат "bank machine." In either case, they are incredibly convenient. Payment via internet is still not quite as common in Russia as in the US, and it seems like everybody pays for their cell phones mainly at these terminals. Lots of services in Russian, like many cell phone plans, aren't fixed monthly sums. They are pre-paid services, and as your pre-paid account gets low, you need to go to one of these machines to add money to your account, otherwise they'll shut your service down so fast your head will spin. And mind you, young Russians these days send text messages like they were going out of style. I don't think a Russian under 30 can even develop a relationship without text-messaging, so you can imagine that these machines are a vital part of their daily lives:

Блин! Деньги кончились на счету. Мобильник перестал работать. Надо бы сейчас же пополнить счёт через терминал. Fudge! My account's out of money. My cell phone stopped working. I need to add money to my account right away at a payment terminal.
Я только что пополнила счет. В терминале сказали ожидать обработки денег в течении дня. Ждать целый день? По-моему, это не так уж удобно. I just added money to my account. The terminal said to expect the money to be processed within a day. Wait a whole day? I don't think that's all that convenient.
Борис подошёл к терминалу и пополнил счёт интернета. Boris walked up to a terminal and added money to his internet account.
Не примирюсь с этими проклятыми терминалами. Я уверен, что когда-нибудь один из них достигнет самосознания, превратится в терминатора, и сделает нас всех рабами. I will not reconcile myself to those damned terminals. I'm sure that someday one of them will achieve self-awareness, turn into a terminator and make slaves of us all.

1 comment

Comment from: Shady_Arc [Visitor]

“Надо сразу же” –> sounds as if you wanted to say “right after something happens, you need to do SMTH immediately” (= you are talking about the future rather than about something that you have to do right now).

It seems “сразу же” works well for past situations ("SMTH happend and then I DID smth right away") or hypothetical situations ("DO smth as soon as SMTH happens"). Or for habitual actions ("I always do B right after A happens").
Not so well in case a nuisance had already happened and no action has been taken yet. Probably that’s because “сразу же” have already passed and you missed your opportunity to take immediate action.

I would use “сейчас же” (right away/right now) or “быстрее", “скорее” (quickly).

Don responds: Agreed. «Сейчас же» is better. The entry has been updated.

06/28/10 @ 07:57

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