Consumers seem to be adopting a new way to pay at their favorite point of sale terminals – by making use of contactless credit cards and debit cards.
The rate of contactless payments made across Europe skyrocketed across the past year, according to Visa Europe, suggesting that similar trends will affect North American outlets quickly. Visa cards alone were used to make more than 340 million contactless payments across Europe last year, according to a Finextra report.
“We’ve seen impressive growth across the board on the amount of Visa contactless cards within the UK and the overall purchases and spend,” Sandra Alzetta, executive director of Visa Europe, explained to Finextra. “Spend has risen to over £618 million in 2013, with £82 million being spent in December of last year alone.”
The rises are partially occurring due to the increasing availability of accommodating terminals: the news outlet noted that the number of contactless credit card payment processing terminals in Europe has risen by almost 200 percent in recent years. The number of Visa contactless cards in circulation, in turn, increased by roughly 125 percent during 2013 alone.
“Use of contactless will rise even further in the UK with the arrival of contactless payments on the London Underground later this year,” Alzetta told the news outlet. “We want to make smaller payments and purchases quick and convenient and UK consumers are clearly seeing that contactless can offer them just that.”
Consumers are already switching credit cards en masse
One reason that consumers may be open to making use of new contactless credit cards is because they’re always on the hunt for new electronic payment methods. RateSupermarket.ca, for example, recently even made a program available that allows consumers to compare the loyalty benefits and other perks offered to them by the various credit cards they can make use of at Canadian credit card payment processing terminals – specifically because consumers apply for and use different cards on such a regular basis.
“Consumers may be incentivized to switch cards due to features such as points or bonuses, but we believe there’s real value in knowing down to the dollar what the right card can save you,” says Penelope Graham, editor of the website. “These calculators are the latest tools we’ve provided to give consumers transparent access to the credit card marketplace, and to help them understand their card options.”Back To Blog