Is cash a ghost of Christmas past?
Contactless and mobile technology are driving new shopping habits in the run-up to Christmas, according to new research from Visa
22 December 2016
Whether online or in-store, buying gifts or enjoying Christmas revelry, shoppers are increasingly foregoing cash, opting for the speed and convenience of contactless cards and new payment methods, new research from Visa shows.
With 165 million contactless cards and 3.4 million NFC-enabled terminals across Europe, usage has grown from 36% in 2015 to 52% in 2016, according to Visa’s 2016 Digital Payments Study.
Importantly, this trend is not solely reserved for younger, more tech-savvy consumers. Contactless uptake has increased across all age demographics, the greatest increase within the 55-64 age bracket, which has witnessed 64% growth since 2015.
Moreover, the adoption of contactless cards is having a tangible impact on other payment methods. In Ireland, contactless card users are more open to using a mobile device as a payment method in a shop (52% contactless card user vs 32% non-contactless card user), to shop via a retailer app (54% vs 37%) and to pay for a meal (53% vs 31%).
“European consumers’ increased familiarity with contactless cards is gradually normalising the use of mobile wallets and other digital payments,” said Philip Konopik, country manager at Visa Ireland. “This Christmas will see a host of different methods used to pay for the gifts under the tree, celebratory drinks with friends, and even the Christmas turkey.
“Retailer success this Christmas will hinge on their ability to give consumers access to their preferred payment method,” Konopik added.