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Blog: Contactless Payments Treble in The UK – It’s Here’s To Stay!

06/03/2015

Contactless Payments Treble in The UK - It's Here's To Stay!

Most people will be familiar with the idea that with the advent of technology comes the decline in the number of people using physical money to pay for their goods. Most consumers will always choose the easiest option when it comes to paying for their consumables, which is why traditional cash or normal credit cards and debits cards have, until recently, been the most popular way to pay for products and services.

Now it is the turn of contactless payments to make its mark on the world and it is most certainly doing just that!

As people have become more used to new payment technologies, they have started feeling increasingly comfortable and have, as a result, been using contactless payments more and more. Indeed, spending has more than trebled over the past year.

In 2014, contactless spending reached an incredible £2.32 billion (data from The UK Cards Association), which is an increase of 255% from 2013 (£653.4 million). This also works out as more than double the amount that was spent in the six years between 2007 and 2013!

Contactless cards are an incredibly useful and, more importantly fast, method of payment, which goes a long way towards explaining why contactless cards were used approximately £319.2 million times last year! This is an increase of £218.8 million from the year 2013 and clearly shows that consumers have most certainly adapted to paying with their new cards!

In addition to people becoming increasingly comfortable with paying via contactless card because of the speed and ease, this huge increase can also be partly attributed to the fact that Transport for London implemented contactless payment technology in 2014 across London buses, tubes, trains, trams, and the DLR. Since implementing the technology, 41 million journeys have been used and paid for via contactless payments.

As with any new technology, the worry about fraud is still in the back of people’s minds. However, even though there are around 58 million contactless cards in the UK, cases of fraud remain relatively rare. Indeed, figures from the first six months of 2014 show losses of £51,000, which only accounts for 0.007% of contactless card spending, so when taken in this context, it really is exceptionally minimal!

There are many advantages to contactless spending, a fact which consumers most certainly seemed to have grasped on to. With all the evidence and seemingly safe nature of contactless spending, it seems this spending trend is here to stay and is likely to just keep on growing and growing!

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