Visa Fulfills 1 Billion Contactless Payments In Europe

Jul 21, 2021

Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, a surge in demand for contactless payments has emerged as more consumers feel more confident in pursuing this way of purchasing over any other method. 

In fact, according to Visa UK, two-thirds or 65% of consumers worldwide would rather use contactless payments more than they currently are. Throughout Europe, more than 80% of all Visa payments made in-store are now considered contactless. 

Since the contactless limits were increased in 29 countries throughout the European continent, Visa has now processed 1 billion “additional touch-free” transactions. About 400 million of those transactions took place within the UK. In fact, the UK contactless limit was increased to £100. 

Local governments, as well as the payment industry, have contributed to this critical trend by raising contactless limits and as a result, this critical milestone was reached in less than 12 months. 

Why Contactless?

With the rise of contactless payments across Europe, both retailers and customers have been able to proceed through checkouts easily and securely. Contactless payments have also proven themselves to be quite resilient, inspiring more consumer confidence. 

An additional plus to contactless payments is that it is one of the most secure methods to pay. It has one of the lowest rates of fraud of all the payment methods. Consumers are not only more comfortable in utilizing this payment method, but they have also come to expect this form of payment wherever they shop. Retailers would do well to take notice and offer this method of payment. 

Charlotte Hogg, Chief Executive Officer, Europe at Visa, had this to say:

“The demand for touch-free payments indicates that contactless has become the norm for European consumers and retailers. Contactless payments are popular because they combine speed and convenience with security. Indeed, contactless cards experience among the lowest fraud rates of any payment type, and in countries where contactless payments are widely used, fraud at the point of sale remains at historic lows.”

Contactless payments will continue to pave the way for fueling Europe’s economic recovery as more restrictions are being lifted and retailers are looking to take advantage of growing consumer confidence.

Visa has launched an initiative called, “Where You Shop Matters”, to assist small business owners to develop “digital capabilities” and serve their respective communities. Contactless payments will play a vital role in this development.

In the Czech Republic, Poland, and Slovakia, Visa is collaborating with governments to offer small businesses access to contactless “acceptance terminals” and its software for free, up to 12 months. 

Providing Support and Encouraging Consumer Confidence

Many small businesses continue to struggle under the pandemic’s crippling conditions. Visa feels that it is critical to offer the necessary support by way of resources so that these businesses continue to keep their doors open and continue to spur confidence in their customers. 

In a successful economic recovery, small businesses are able to not only survive but thrive. Customers will continue to pay in a hassle-free, secure, and flexible way. 

Contactless Is Growing In Demand

It is clear that contactless payments have taken Europe by storm. Well over 80% of in-store successful economic recovery are now entirely contactless. For example, in France and Germany, the amount of contactless transactions have grown by two-thirds. It increased to almost 50% for both countries “year-on-year”. 

With restrictions slowly being lifted across Europe, contactless payments will be the main driver to give the European economy a much-needed financial boost and usher in its economic recovery. 

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Having a merchant account allows an account holder to take advantage of merchant cash advances. When a merchant is approved for an advance, the business agrees to receive a lump sum of cash in exchange for an agreed-upon percentage of future credit card sales.

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Virtual terminals are stationed on a merchant’s website, making it easy for customers to make a payment or purchase online. Merchants or a payment processor can easily set up virtual terminals, so online businesses can accept credit and debit card and e-check transactions.

A merchant account is a business account with an acquiring bank. Without this business account, which actually works more like a line of credit, a merchant cannot accept and process credit and debit card transactions. Businesses need a merchant account to accept major credit cards via a static point-of-sale terminal, mobile card reader, or through a virtual payment gateway.

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