Contactless card payments limit rises to £100 for a single transaction from today
THE limit for contactless spending is rising from today.
Shoppers paying for good and services will now be able to tap their bank card for anything up to the value of £100 in a single transaction.
The existing £45 limit for a contactless payment is being increased in a national roll out that will see all payment terminals eventually accept more than double that amount without the need for someone to enter their card's pin code.
The scale of the upgrade means it will take time for the scheme to be introduced at all retailers, so shoppers are advised to ask in store or follow prompts available to them.
David Postings, chief executive of UK Finance, said: "Contactless payment has proved very popular with consumers and an increasing number of transactions are being made using contactless technology.
"The increase in the limit to £100 will allow people to pay for higher value transactions like their weekly shop or filling up their car with fuel. The payments industry has worked hard to put in place the infrastructure to enable retailers to update their payments systems so they can start to offer their customers this new higher limit."
The limit was initially raised from £30 to £45 back in April 2020, at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, to enable people to buy greater amounts without needing to touch buttons and enter their pin on machines.
Plans to move to a £100 limit were first suggested by Mr Sunak in the budget back in March. He said the change would provide an additional "boost" for shops as the country tries to recover from the economic effects of the pandemic.
The Financial Conduct Authority says the contactless threshold for multiple transactions will also increase from £130 to £300 this week.
Sheldon Mills, executive director, consumers and competition at the FCA said: "During the pandemic more people have been using contactless payments. We are changing our rules to help the industry continue to respond to the changing ways in which people prefer to pay.
"Increasing the regulatory limits allows industry to raise the contactless limit in the future to meet the evolving expectations of customers and merchants for fast but secure ways to pay. When making any change, it is important that the industry continues to ensure the right protections are in place to keep payments safe and secure."
Campaigners however, remain concerned about the risks of the UK steadily moving to a cashless society.
The Royal Mint reportedly issued its lowest amount of coins during the pandemic last year with 437 million UK coins put into circulation in 2020-21, down from 588 million the year before.
The Post Office also launched a Save Our Cash campaign in July, supported by charities such as Age Concern, saying it had concerns the pandemic was speeding up trends for digital payments, which would alienate and exclude some members of society such as the elderly who continue to rely heavily on notes and coins.
But with the £100 limit increase also comes a reminder to households about the importance of budgeting and not losing track of spending now that more can be bought with a single tap.
Jonny Sabinsky, head of communications at digital banking firm thinkmoney, advises that people keep a close eye on what they're spending as limits increase and Christmas moves closer.
He explained: “The contactless limit rising to £100 is a great move. This form of payment is easier and more secure than any other, and the limit rise will give people more flexibility when it comes to shopping.
“However, it can also make it easier for some people to overspend. And with Christmas just around the corner, we may want to have a closer eye on what we're spending."