Contactless payment habits become increasingly ingrained for consumers


The increased usage of contactless cards is set to continue as new consumer habits become ingrained following the pandemic. 

It comes as Europe Global Payments Cards Data and Forecasts to 2025 shows that contactless payments still account for a small but growing proportion of total card spending, as they are often subject to spending limits and therefore used for lower-value payments than traditional cards. 

Usage of contactless cards still varies around the globe, but remains high in Europe – where convenience has led  to rapid adoption by consumers and widespread acceptance exists thanks to card scheme mandates. 

Furthermore, within the UK the limit on contactless payments is set to rise to £100, following the region no longer having to abide by EU regulations. It’s a move that will only serve to heighten the engagement with contactless payments as it becomes available for a wider scope of transactions.

Daniel Dawson, who led RBR’s Global Payment Cards Data and Forecasts to 2025 research remarked: “The COVID-19 pandemic has boosted an already active sector and encouraged transitions from both cash to cards and traditional card payments to contactless”.

The firm cited that convenience coupled with growing consumer confidence is driving the rise of contactless cards in AsiaPacific, although uptake of the technology in the region varies considerably. All newly issued cards in China and Singapore are contactless, while in Vietnam and Pakistan most cards still do not have contactless functionality. 

Meanwhile, consumers reduced their visits to merchant outlets to minimise exposure to the virus. Together, these factors have seen the total number of transactions, both cash and card, decline in many markets. However, it is against this backdrop that contactless cards have gained new relevance as they are often viewed as a more hygienic alternative to cash and traditional card payments.