By 2017, everyone will be able to pay with their contactless-enabled device for high value payments (above £30 in the UK) at all contactless terminals in Europe, says MasterCard, removing one of the biggest impediments to contactless growth in retail.
Using payment services such as Apple Pay, consumers can already make higher value (+£30) contactless transactions by authenticating themselves with their fingerprint or a PIN code on their mobile phone or other device. However, currently this is only available at selected retailers. By 2017 all contactless terminals will be upgraded to allow higher value payments.
Europeans increasingly tap for their everyday purchases as they benefit from its speed and convenience. In the second quarter of 2015, tap transactions in Europe grew by almost 170% year on year and consumers already using contactless have tapped 20% more. Contactless spend tripled in Europe compared to Q2 2014. In Q2 2015, half of contactless transactions took place in grocery stores; followed by 14.5% at restaurants and bars, and 10% at general retail stores.
Chris Kangas, Head of Contactless Payments Europe at MasterCard says: “The list of retailers accepting contactless never stops growing. Over the last quarter, we have announced new acceptance deals across Europe with major retailers like Ikea and McDonald’s. The drive to full contactless acceptance is taking hold. In July 2015, 43% of new terminals installed had contactless capability which is up from 21% the previous year.”
MasterCard contactless technology is one of the solutions that can help retailers to reduce queuing at the cashier or make life easier for consumers when they commute every day. For example, 1.2million contactless transaction are made with Transport for London each day, making it one of the largest contactless merchants worldwide. In Russia, contactless payments are now available in Moscow at parking meters, on the Metro and at ticket vending machines at a number of local and regional bus routes. In St. Petersburg contactless is also available at turnstiles of the underground, at bus routes and trams.
Javier Perez, President MasterCard Europe, concludes: “Consumers in 40 European countries are endorsing the contactless payment experience as part of their day-to-day life. 61% of MasterCard in-store transactions are contactless in the Czech Republic, while similar growth trends are being seen in Poland (41%), in Hungary (27%) and in Slovakia (27%). Every time consumers see the contactless logo, they can use any contactless enabled device whether it’s a card, a mobile phone or another contactless enabled form factor to pay at home but also abroad”.