UK contactless spending ascending to new heights
If you’re curious, then it’s been fast and furious. Spending on UK contactless cards in the first half of 2016 has already outstripped contactless spending for the whole of 2015, according to the UK Cards Association.
Some £9.27 billion was spent using contactless methods between January and June of this year, more than the total 2015 contactless spend of £7.75 billion.
Richard Koch, head of policy at the UK Cards Association, says: “Contactless cards are firmly entrenched as the preferred way to pay for millions of consumers, who expect to be able to use them for everyday purchases.”
There were 1.1 billion contactless transactions in the first half of the year, compared to 1.05 billion for the whole of 2015.
The UK Cards Association says contactless card payments accounted for 18% of total purchases in June. This is in contrast to the June 2015 figure of 7%.
The average contactless transaction was £8.60 in both May and June of this year.
Payment card spending reached £53.1 billion in June, £0.4 billion more than in May. Both spending and the number of payments increased in the second quarter of the year, with 92 million more purchases and £1.9 billion more spending than in the first quarter of 2016.
The number of card payments within the retail sector increased by 5.2 million to 799 million, with the corresponding spend increasing by £134 million to £25 billion. The majority of the increase came from the food and drink sub-sector, while there were also increased sales of photographic goods and at gift shops.
The association expects contactless card usage will continue to increase in the UK, “particularly as charities and transport operators outside London recognise the benefits this technology can bring”.