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What You Should Know About Free Restaurant POS Software & How To Make The Best Choice

These great restaurant POS systems are all free and all have solid feature sets, easy-to-use interfaces, plenty of report options, and good customer service.

    Erica Seppala
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Advertiser Disclosure: Our unbiased reviews and content are supported in part by affiliate partnerships, and we adhere to strict guidelines to preserve editorial integrity.
Free restaurant POS software

Running a restaurant can be tough…and expensive. Having the right equipment and resources at your disposal can help your business run smoothly and efficiently, but these often come at a price that puts a financial strain on any small business owner. While we all know the saying, “Nothing in life is free,” what if I told you that there’s an amazing tool for your business that won’t cost your restaurant a dime? That tool is free point of sale (POS) software, and yes, it really exists.

You may be asking, “What’s the catch?” Fortunately, there are a number of POS providers that provide POS software for restaurants with no strings attached. Unfortunately, though, you typically have to weed out the software that doesn’t pass muster — software that’s buggy or laggy, not user-friendly, comes with hidden costs, or it requires expensive hardware.

The good news is we did all the hard work for you. We’ve researched and reviewed the free POS software for restaurants to put together this list. Only the very best made the cut. Whether you want a modern way to accept multiple forms of payment or you’re ready to take your business to the next level with features such as online ordering, we cover it all. From pizzerias and franchises to cafes and bars, there’s a no-cost software option out there for you. Keep reading to learn more about the best free POS systems for restaurants.

Learn More About Our Top Picks

CompanyBest ForNext StepsBest For
Square POS

Read More

Best overall free POS software for restaurants.
Best overall free POS software for restaurants.

Visit Site

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Toast POS

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Best free restaurant POS software for Android.
Best free restaurant POS software for Android.

Visit Site

Read More

Loyverse

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Best for small restaurants ready to switch to a POS system.
Best for small restaurants ready to switch to a POS system.

Visit Site

Read More

eHopper

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Best restaurant POS system with free credit card processing.
Best restaurant POS system with free credit card processing.

Visit Site

Read More

Floreant

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Best free locally-installed POS software for restaurants.
Best free locally-installed POS software for restaurants.

Visit Site

Read More

Other Featured Options:

  • Harbortouch POS: Best free POS software with strong reporting.
  • Chromis: Best customizable open-source POS software.

Read more below to learn why we chose these options.

7 Best Free Restaurant POS Software

The best point of sale systems for restaurants aren’t just easy on the wallet. Even free systems should have basic features, an easy-to-use interface, reporting, and good customer support. Start your search for the best free restaurant POS software with these top choices, including:

  • Square
  • Toast
  • Loyverse
  • eHopper
  • Floreant
  • Harbortouch
  • Chromis POS

1. Square

Square POS



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Best overall free POS software for restaurants.

When it comes to free POS software, it’s hard to beat Square. Square POS tops “best of” lists across Merchant Maverick and the web for good reason. The app is completely free, and it’s easy to get started. Once you’ve signed up, you’ll be able to accept payments in your restaurant and access other features, such as basic inventory management, employee management, and reports. You’ll also get lots of other nice features you won’t find with other free POS software, including a basic eCommerce site from Weebly and digital gift cards.

Square has built-in credit card processing, but its processing fees are both transparent and competitive. If you’re worried about hardware costs, don’t be — Square offers its customers a free magstripe reader that can be used to accept payments easily. Of course, as your business (and your budget) grows, you can upgrade to some of Square’s other POS equipment, including chip readers, terminals, registers, and complete hardware kits.

In addition to a load of great features and an easy-to-use interface, Square also offers solid customer support. You can visit the Square App Marketplace to explore numerous integrations covering everything from accounting software to loyalty programs and employee management. And when you’re ready for a more robust restaurant POS system, you can upgrade to Square for Restaurants, which has additional restaurant-specific features, such as menu creation, table management, tableside ordering, and delivery integration.

Pros

  • Numerous integrations
  • Free card reader
  • Easy to use
  • Competitive credit card processing fees

Cons

  • Upgrade required for advanced features

Get Started with Square POS

Read our in-depth review

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2. Toast

Toast POS



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Read our Review

Best free restaurant POS software for Android. 

Most cloud-based POS software is designed for use on iOS devices. But Toast is different because it’s made for Android operating systems, making it a cheaper and more versatile POS solution for restaurants. Toast’s Starter plan offers a basic set of features that are best suited for smaller restaurants making the transition to POS systems.

With the Starter plan, you’ll receive the cloud-based iOS software, built-in payment processing, and customer support. Toast has a very user-friendly interface, and representatives can help you get set up quickly. Toast has hardware and bundled packages that offer everything you need to get started, from tablets and card readers to kitchen displays and kiosks. While you can bring your own hardware and potentially save a few bucks, Toast doesn’t recommend this, and you won’t get the customer support you need if you opt to piece together your own system. Toast does have 0% financing and pay-as-you-go options to help offset upfront costs.

If you need more than basic POS features, you can upgrade to a paid plan or purchase one (or more) of Toast’s add-ons. Additional modules include payroll, loyalty programs, online ordering, takeout, and more. Many third-party integrations are available, such as Grubhub, Bevspot, PayTronix, Shogo, and Restaurant365. One potential drawback to note is that you can’t choose your own payment processor. Instead, you must use Toast’s built-in flat-rate credit card processing.

Pros

  • Android-based
  • Numerous integrations
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Advanced features are only available through paid plans or add-ons
  • You must use Toast’s credit card processing

Get Started with Toast POS

Read our in-depth review

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3. Loyverse

Loyverse



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Read our Review

Best for small restaurants ready to switch to a POS system. 

Smaller restaurants new to the world of POS systems might want to take a look at Loyverse. Loyverse can be used on iOS or Android devices, and it’s available in over 30 languages. The POS software is completely free and boasts multilocation management, inventory tracking, customer loyalty, a kitchen display system app, a customer display app, and more. Loyverse is extremely easy to use, so it’s a great choice for businesses with no prior POS experience.

Loyverse supports a wide range of POS hardware, such as printers, barcode scanners, cash drawers, and terminals. You can bring your own compatible equipment or purchase whatever you need directly from Loyverse. Loyverse doesn’t have its own credit card processor, but it does support several popular options such as Worldpay and SumUp. Add in excellent customer support, and it’s easy to see why over 1 million users worldwide are signing up for this free service.

There are a few drawbacks, though. Depending on your business model, Loyverse’s features may fall short of what you need. If you want employee management features, you’ll also have to pay $5/month per employee, which can add up quickly based on the size of your staff. If you want to add advanced inventory management, you’ll fork over an additional $25/month. And while Loyverse integrates with several third-party apps, such as QuickBooks, Xero, and WooCommerce, you’ll have to pay $9/month for these integrations. Despite these relatively minor drawbacks, though, Loyverse’s easy-to-use software is a great introductory POS system for restaurants.

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Multilingual
  • Excellent customer service

Cons

  • You must pay for integrations
  • Limited features

Read our in-depth review

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4. eHopper

eHopper



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Read our Review

Best restaurant POS system with free credit card processing.

Some POS systems claim to be free, but business owners quickly find themselves pulling out their wallets to purchase hardware or cover other costs. With eHopper, everything from the software to even credit card processing fees can be completely free.

eHopper’s Essential POS plan won’t cost you a dime and has the features you’d expect from POS software, including inventory management, customer management, tip management, split payments, and basic reporting. If you want more advanced features, eHopper has three additional plans that provide things such as table management, loyalty, and eCommerce. The software is compatible with Android tablets, iPads, Windows PC, and eHopper’s All In One system. When you sign up for eHopper, you can also receive a PAX S300 payment terminal for free.

What stands out about eHopper is that the company advertises free credit card processing fees. The caveat is that fees are passed along to the customer, which some business owners may not feel comfortable doing. You can, however, opt to use another credit card processor supported by eHopper. Other drawbacks are that eHopper’s software isn’t as intuitive and easy to use as others on this list, and there are only two third-party integrations. However, if you’re not opposed to passing along extra fees to your customers, eHopper is one of the few providers to offer a truly free POS system.

Pros

  • Free terminal
  • Free credit card processing

Cons

  • Limited integrations
  • Limited features

Read our in-depth review

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5. Floreant

Floreant



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Best free locally-installed POS software for restaurants. 

Most POS software is cloud-based, but if you’d prefer locally-installed software, Floreant may be right up your alley. This open-source POS software runs on Windows, Mac, and Linux. The free version of Floreant contains a number of useful features for restaurants, including basic table management, modifiers, and advanced reporting. For additional features, you can upgrade to ORO POS, which is priced at $34.99/month per terminal.

Floreant does not require an internet connection to use its software. However, you will need an internet connection to process debit or credit cards. Floreant uses the Authorize.net gateway, and if you use this, a $25/month fee applies.

Floreant is pretty easy to use and learn, although its interface is pretty basic. There are also no customer management tools, and you won’t find round-the-clock customer support like some of the other software options on this list. However, if you want locally-installed software that gives you basic POS features for a low cost, give Floreant a try.

Pros

  • Locally-installed
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Gateway fee required to accept cards
  • Limited support options

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6. Harbortouch

Harbortouch POS



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Read our Review

Best free POS software with strong reporting. 

On the surface, Harbortouch looks like the ideal free POS system. It boasts plenty of features, has solid inventory management, and robust reporting. With Harbortouch, you’ll get reservations, employee management, and customer loyalty without having to upgrade or purchase add-ons. In addition to its free software, Harbortouch also frequently offers free hardware.  So what’s the catch?

Harbortouch’s POS software and hardware may require you to sign a Merchant Transaction Processing Agreement and a service agreement. Terminating your contract early may result in hundreds of dollars in fees. You can also only use Harbortouch’s credit card processing. If you decide to negotiate a contract with Harbortouch, make sure that you read your contract carefully and watch out for any hidden fees.

Harbortouch isn’t the most modern or intuitive POS system, and it may take some time to learn and get used to the system. If you’re not willing to sign a contract or are new to POS systems and want something a little more user-friendly, consider one of the other options on this list. However, if you’re looking for a free POS system for your restaurant with plenty of features and excellent reporting, take Harbortouch for a spin with a free demo.

Pros

  • Good feature set
  • Excellent reporting

Cons

  • Contract required
  • Moderate learning curve

Read our in-depth review

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7. Chromis POS

Chromis



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Best customizable open-source POS software.

A customizable POS solution often comes with a hefty price tag but not when you download Chromis, a free, open-source POS software. Chromis works with Linux or Windows and is compatible with a wide range of POS hardware.

Some Chromis features include a customer database, built-in reporting, remote kitchen printing, kitchen display screens, reporting, and built-in scripting language that allows for user customization. Chromis is currently working on an updated version to provide additional features, such as loyalty programs and gift cards. Chromis doesn’t have as many reviews as some of the options on this list, but the reviews it does have across the web are overwhelmingly positive.

While Chromis isn’t as sleek and modern as other options on the market, it’s easy to learn and use. And while there aren’t as many support options as you’ll find with larger POS companies, there is a user forum to help you get the software up and running and overcome any major problems. If you choose Chromis, you will need to have your own hardware, find your own credit card processor, and figure out how to install and set up the software on your system. If you’re new to POS or software in general, this may be a challenge. However, if you want truly free locally-installed software that is customizable to the needs of your business, you won’t have anything to lose by giving Chromis a try.

Pros

  • Customizable
  • Locally-installed
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Limited customer support
  • Limited features

Jump back to comparison chart

Finding Free Bar POS Software

If you own a bar or your restaurant has a bar, your business requires additional features that you may not find with just any restaurant POS system. The POS solutions in this post may be suitable for a restaurant, but how do they perform in bars? The best POS software used in bars should have inventory management, the ability to open tabs for customers, custom tipping, the option to split tips among employees, and sales reports.

Let’s see how these free bar POS software options stack up.

Inventory Management Open Tabs Custom Tips Split Tips Reports
Square X
Toast Paid add-on
Loyverse X
eHopper Paid plans only
Floreant Paid add-on Paid plan only X Paid plan only
Harbortouch X
Chromis POS X X X

Looking for more options? Check out our top picks for the best bar POS systems. Whether you own a local neighborhood bar or a thriving downtown nightclub, there’s a solution for you. And remember, no matter what type of establishment you operate, always make sure to do your research, take advantage of free trials, and compare costs before making a commitment. We have a lot of resources available on our restaurant page to help you.

Good luck!

In Summary: 7 Best Free Restaurant POS Software

  1. Square POS: Best overall free POS software for restaurants.
  2. Toast POS: Best free restaurant POS software for Android.
  3. Loyverse: Best for small restaurants ready to switch to a POS system.
  4. eHopper: Best restaurant POS system with free credit card processing.
  5. Floreant: Best free locally-installed POS software for restaurants.
  6. Harbortouch POS: Best free POS software with strong reporting.
  7. Chromis: Best customizable open-source POS software.
Erica Seppala

Erica Seppala

Expert Analyst & Reviewer at Merchant Maverick
An expert in accounting, finance, and point of sale, Erica has been researching and writing about all things small-business since 2018. Erica's insights into personal and business finance have been cited in numerous publications, including MSN, Real Simple, and Reader's Digest. She is a graduate of Limestone College.
Erica Seppala
View Erica Seppala's professional experience on LinkedIn.
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Our unbiased reviews and content are supported in part by affiliate partnerships, and we adhere to strict guidelines to preserve editorial integrity. The editorial content on this page is not provided by any of the companies mentioned and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone.

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