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Survey highlights consumers' changing attitudes to payments

Research for The Visa Europe Contactless Barometer, which benchmarks consumer take-up of new payment methods, has shown that consumers welcome the introduction of contactless payments and look forward to a wider availability in retail outlets.


Survey highlights consumers' changing attitudes to payments

85% of contactless users surveyed said that they would recommend contactless to their friends and family and 90% thought it made life simpler. 28% said that there were not enough retail outlets offering contactless payments and over half (57%) said they had never been asked to pay with contactless in a shop. More than one in three (37%) cited this as the main barrier preventing them from using the technology.

The research showed that consumers were most likely to want to use their contactless cards in fast moving retail outlets where the benefits of the technology were most obvious. Fast food restaurants, petrol stations and supermarkets were selected as the venues where consumers were most likely to want to use contactless over chip and pin. Contactless was most popular for people in a rush (58%), people with a queue behind them (30%) and those in busy places with lots of people (26%).

Mark Austin, head of contactless at Visa Europe, said “We’ve developed the Barometer to help us benchmark changes in consumer attitudes and take-up of contactless payments. It’s good to see that users of contactless are satisfied with the technology but it’s also clear that many consumers would like to see it become more widely available across the country.”

The research found that consumers felt the main benefits of contactless were:

The speed in paying via contactless as opposed to cash (31%)
53% like not having to hand their card over to a cashier
55% appreciate not having to carry cash in their wallet / purse
51% like not having to carry loose change
48% like not having to plan to take cash out from an ATM

However, there were some concerns amongst those interviewed  about fraud and security. 44% of users said they would worry about the security implications if their card was stolen, suggesting that issuing banks may need to do more to educate their customers about the security measures in place to protect them.

Austin concluded: “We are now taking the first steps on the road to becoming a ‘less-cash’ society. The Barometer offers a snapshot of changing attitudes towards payment technology and consumer experiences of using it on the high street. The two key takeaways for me are the need for retailers to keep pace with consumer demand and also for our industry to take steps to ensure consumers are reassured about the security measures present in all contactless cards.”

The research included interviews with 2,000 UK consumers. 

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