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May 21, 2012updated 04 Apr 2017 4:14pm

Almost two thirds of UK contactless card holders never use the feature

Only 5% of British consumers have used a contactless card, although 14% of the UK population own a card fitted with the contactless technology, revealed a recent study by international market researcher Mintel While around 8% of interviewees said they would immediately use contactless payments if they could, the research says consumers are not happy in being issued a contactless card without their request Mintel found out that 62% of the contactless card users in the UK think it is a more convenient method of payment, while 28% were indifferent and 9% disagreed.

By Raphael Michilis

Only 5% of British consumers have used a contactless card, although 14% of the UK population own a card fitted with the contactless technology, revealed a recent study by international market researcher Mintel.

While around 8% of interviewees said they would immediately use contactless payments if they could, the research says consumers are not happy in being issued a contactless card without their request.

Mintel found out that 62% of the contactless card users in the UK think it is a “more convenient” method of payment, while 28% were indifferent and 9% disagreed.

Mintel surveyed 2,000 UK consumers.

It estimated that 9m UK consumers are aware of the contactless capability on their card, while 3.8m “aren’t sure” they have one, said the company’s spokesperson.

“Consumers are still wary of contactless card payments, and compulsory upgrades risk further undermining consumers’ goodwill towards the banks. There is anecdotal evidence of disgruntled customers closing accounts rather than have to carry a contactless card. If they only realise that they have been issued with this card months after the event, the reaction will be even less favourable,” said Toby Clark, head of UK Financial Services at Mintel.

Security is a big concern among the respondents, with 64% having said they worry about the use of a mobile instead of a payment card, and 58% being apprehensive about contactless cards.

“For those who have been issued with a card, though, it’s not security that’s preventing people from using contactless cards. Instead, it’s the limited acceptance and a lack of a compelling reason to switch from chip and PIN,” added Clarck.

The key findings of the study included:

43% of those using contactless cards had used the feature just a few before the Mintel.

62% of smartphone users and 71% of tablet owners would consider using contactless payment technology.

72% of consumers think think contactless cards should only be issued on request.

 

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