Visa predictions anticipate the UK will have 34 million contactless Visa-branded cards on issue and 175,000 contactless terminals deployed by the end of 2013, with Europe reaching 70 million Visa-branded contactless cards and 650,000 contactless terminals this year.
“2012 was a tipping point for UK contactless transactions, which increased over the course of the year to more than 2.5 million a month,” Mark Austin, Visa Europe’s head of contactless, said in a statement. “We’re predicting that transactions will grow fourfold over the course of 2013, thanks to the roll out in retailers like Boots UK, Marks and Spencer and McDonald’s, as well as all of London’s buses.”
Such major UK merchants as supermarket chain Tesco, however, continue to hold back in rolling out contactless. But an expansion by Boots would add momentum to the UK contactless roll out, which is Europe’s largest, though take-up is larger in Poland.
And in a first project of its kind, Transport for London in December began accepting contactless credit and debit cards for payment of fares on 8,500 buses serving London.