Impressive 64% growth of merchants accepting MasterCard and Maestro contactless in Europe compared to Q2 2014

WATERLOO, Belgium – September 8, 2015 – As the number of mobile NFC payment solutions is increasing and being used, consumers expect to be able to use their enabled smartphones to tap and pay wherever MasterCard® and Maestro® are accepted for all values and retailers want the payment process to be as smooth as possible.   MasterCard has announced today that everyone will now be able to pay with their NFC enabled devices for high value payments (above 25 EUR in the Eurozone) at all contactless point-of-sale (POS) terminals in Europe by 2017. Consumers will be able to make high value payments by authenticating themselves with a PIN code or their fingerprint on their phone. This is another great step towards standardizing the contactless user experience for smart phone NFC payments and follows last year’s MasterCard announcement establishing contactless acceptance at all MasterCard points-of-acceptance across Europe by 2020. On top of that, MasterCard has also recently announced that in the UK the contactless limit for payment cards is rising from £20 to £30 as of September 1, 2015.

Europeans increasingly tap for their everyday purchases as they benefit from its speed and convenience. In the second quarter of 2015, tap transactions in Europe grew by almost 170 % year on year and consumers already using contactless have tapped 20% more. Contactless spend (in Euros) tripled in Europe compared to Q2 2014. In Q2 2015, 1 out of 2 contactless transactions was done at food stores; followed by 14.5% at restaurants & bars and 10% at retail stores.

Chris Kangas, Head of Contactless Payments Europe at MasterCard adds: “The list of retailers accepting contactless never stops growing. Over the last quarter, we have announced new acceptance deals across Europe with major retailers like Ikea in Austria; MediaMarkt in Germany; restaurants like McDonald’s in Belarus; the Electric Castle Festivals in Romania and the recent contactless launch in the metro in Kyiv in June. The drive to full contactless acceptance is taking hold as reflected in recent device statistics: in July 2015, 43% of new terminals installed had contactless capability which is an improvement from 21% in July 2014.

MasterCard contactless technology is one of the solutions that can help retailers to reduce queuing at the cashier or make life easier for consumers when they commute every day. For example, on June 8, 2015, Transport for London (TfL) reported more than 100 million contactless journeys since its launch in September 2014, meaning that 1 out of 10 contactless bankcard transactions in the UK are made on TfL’s network, making it one of the largest contactless merchants worldwide. In Russia, contactless payments are now available in Moscow at parking meters, in the metro and at ticket vending machines at a number of local and regional bus routes, in St. Petersburg at turnstiles of the underground, at bus routes and trams.

Javier Perez, President MasterCard Europe, concluded: “Consumers in 40 European countries are endorsing the contactless payment experience as part of their day-to-day life. 61% of MasterCard® and Maestro® in-store transactions are contactless in the Czech Republic, while similar growth trends are being seen in Poland (41%), in Hungary (27%) and in Slovakia (27%). Every time consumers see the contactless logo, they can use any contactless enabled device whether it’s a card, a mobile phone or another contactless enabled form factor to pay at home but also abroad”.

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 All data mentioned in this press release come from the MasterCard Data Warehouse

About MasterCard MasterCard (NYSE: MA), www.mastercard.com, is a technology company in the global payments industry. We operate the world’s fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. MasterCard’s products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone. Follow us on Twitter @MasterCardNews, join the discussion on the Beyond the Transaction Blog and subscribe for the latest news.