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UK firms embrace contactless card payment technology


Contactless card payments are on the rise in the UK, research shows.



One of the UK’s largest retail firms has finally decided to bite the bullet and join the contactless payment revolution, which is slowly changing the buying-and-selling process on the high street.



Boots has until now, resisted the temptation of contactless technology, but it seems that it has simply become impossible for the retailer to ignore.



Indeed, a large number of the country’s biggest stores have already decided that it is impossible to ignore the march of contactless technology.



Bare statistics support the assertion that retailers are in danger of being left behind if they fail to introduce the technology.



Figures show that consumers in the UK were responsible for more than eight million contactless purchases in August alone, with the average spend amounting to £6.55.



What’s more, the report from Visa Europe shows that the number of contactless cards has risen by an impressive 23 per cent year-on-year.



This has been mirrored by the increase in the number of contactless terminals, which has soared 135 per cent.



Nigel Shortt, Boots UK head of delivery for retail, commented: “At Boots UK, we are continually looking for new ways to offer our customers great shopping experiences. Contactless payment saves time for both our customers and staff during peak trading periods by speeding up traditional card payment and reducing transaction and queue times.



“The initial stages of our rollout demonstrated that consumers enjoy the benefits of contactless payments and we are delighted that this is now possible in all Boots UK stores.”



According to Visa, its contactless card payment volumes quintupled in 2012 as outlets from Olympic stadium retailers to vending machines became fully contactless. Transport for London has now fully rolled out contactless on their buses in London, with the tube network planned to follow in 2014.