People eager to use up their Dine and Discover vouchers before they expire were left disappointed on Wednesday night as many experienced some sort of outage.
The Dine and Discover vouchers will expire on Thursday at 11.59pm, so many were eager to use them up on Wednesday night.
However at around 5.30pm on Wednesday, an error message appeared when people tried to opened up their vouchers.
"Something went wrong," the message said.
"We're unable to load your vouchers. Try again later."
"I just feel sorry for the staff who probably got abused," one person told Yahoo News Australia on Thursday morning, adding they suspected it could be due to a lot of people using up their vouchers at the same time.
The patron had intended on using up their final 'Dine' voucher out in Erskineville, however, ended up having to pay.
They said the staff behind the counter checked their Service NSW app, and they also could not get the vouchers to load.
Yahoo News Australia was sent two screenshots of the message from different people hoping to use them up, one being at 5.51 pm and another at 8.39pm.
Others on social media also vented their frustration about being unable to access the vouchers.
One person on Twitter said they tried to get the vouchers to load for an "embarrassingly long time". They then explained they went through their emails to find them and then the vouchers wouldn't scan.
— Michael Dahlstrom (@mb_dahlstrom) June 29, 2022
However, some people didn't even get to see the "Something went wrong" message — for some people the page on the app wouldn't even load.
One of the people who could not access their vouchers was Alex, who was getting pizza at Bondi.
Alex explained to Yahoo News Australia she does not usually eat out, but decided to go out for dinner, specifically to use them.
She said she felt "pretty tired and disappointed" after not being able to put the $25 voucher towards dinner.
Some even printed out the Dine and Discover vouchers, but that didn't work either.
800 per cent surge behind crash
A Service NSW spokesperson confirmed to Yahoo News Australia there was an outage on Wednesday night and it was due to the surge in people trying to redeem their vouchers.
"Dine & Discover NSW saw a record number of redemptions yesterday with 590,744 vouchers used in NSW businesses," the spokesperson said on Thursday morning.
"In the final days of the program, Dine & Discover NSW voucher redemptions have increased by around 800 per cent.
"The Service NSW vouchers database experienced two outages yesterday, one around 5pm and one around 8:20pm, due to the extremely high volume of voucher redemptions."
The outages were resolved within an hour, the spokesperson added.
Numerous people on social media claimed they could not scan their vouchers on Wednesday night, even if they were able to access them.
The Dine and Discover vouchers were issued by the NSW government to boost financial recovery from the pandemic.
However, on Sunday, AAP reported a surprisingly low number of people had taken advantage of the vouchers.
Labor said the Department of Customer Service data shows just 58 per cent of the vouchers had been used statewide. On June 18, the ABC reported $326,000,000 worth of vouchers were unused.
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