UK Contactless Spending Limit Rises To £30

British shoppers can now spend more money than ever using contactless payment methods as the limit on purchases rises today.

Consumers can now spend up to £30 in one transaction using contactless debit or credit cards, or NFC-enabled payment technologies such as Apple Pay, as the limit is upped from the previous high of £20.

‘Huge rise’

The rise has been approved by the UK Cards Association, which today revealed research showing that more than £2.5 billion was spent using contactless cards in the first half of 2015.

This is a significant rise from the £2.32 billion spent using contactless over the whole of 2014, as more shops than ever before look to implement the technology across the UK.

“Contactless payments are fast, easy and secure,” said Graham Peacop, CEO of The UK Cards Association. “With more contactless cards in wallets than ever before and a growing number of retailers accepting contactless payments, we have seen a huge rise in the number of payments being made.”

“The growth in contactless payments shows people want to use contactless cards and increasing the limit gives customers even more opportunities to pay in this way.”


Recent figures from some of the UK’s largest payment providers has shown that the country is rapidly falling in love with using contactless technology.

Figures releases last week by MasterCard showed that the amount of spending by British consumers on its contactless cards has increased more than five-fold in the last 12 months to show a 560 percent year-on-year growth.

Elsewhere, Barclaycard has said that contactless spending amongst its users has more than trebled to increase 150 percent by value and 134 percent by volume year-on-year.

And Visa also recently reported that more than one billion contactless transactions have been made across Europe in the last 12 months, with the UK is leading the way in terms of the amount of contactless technology in shops, boasting 49.6 million cards and 410,000 point of sale (POS) terminals.

“We believe that the new threshold increase to £30 could be the most significant to date, and has the potential to essentially redefine contactless usage,” said Kevin Jenkins, managing director of Visa UK and Ireland, revealing that 75 percent of transactions processed by the company are for £30 and under.

“With contactless now accounting for one in 11 in-store Visa transactions, and Britons increasingly embracing the technology, our data shows that the rise could impact as many as 3 million Visa transactions per day in the UK, for a total of over £70 million.”

“This is an opportunity to increase convenience, improve service and deliver an enhanced shopping experience for a significant number of their customers.”

All clued up on mobile payments? Try our quiz!

Mike Moore

Michael Moore joined TechWeek Europe in January 2014 as a trainee before graduating to Reporter later that year. He covers a wide range of topics, including but not limited to mobile devices, wearable tech, the Internet of Things, and financial technology.

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