‘Touch and go’ for Barclaycard as contactless card payments in Ipswich more than double

Contactless card payments have more than doubled in major towns and cities across the Eadt of Englan

Contactless card payments have more than doubled in major towns and cities across the Eadt of England in the past year. - Credit: Archant

The number of contactless card payments made by consumers in Ipswich has more than doubled in the past year, according to figures from Barclays.

The banking giant says that growth in the volume of “touch and go” transactions has been driven by the uptake of contactless technology by supermarkets, with Sainsbury’s having joined its “Big Four” rivals towards the end of 2016.

Figures from Barclaycard show that contactless spending has increased in Ipswich by 139% over the past 12 months which, among the main towns and cities in the East of England, puts it behind only Norwich (up 143%) and Peterborough (141%).

The level has also more than doubled in Colchester (up 129%), Chelmsford (114%), Southend-on-Sea (109%) and Cambridge (102%).

In contrast, London, where overall contactless usage is already the highest in the country, has seen a more modest 45% increase.

Nationally, more than half of all eligible transactons (those involving sums up to £30) are now made using contactless technology which is, on average, around seven seconds quicker compared with “Chip and PIN”.

Tami Hargreaves, commercial director, digital consumer payments at Barclaycard, said: “The days of the weekly food shop are gone for many Brits.

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“While a couple of hours spent browsing store aisles will always be preferred by some, there is a clear shift towards speed and convenience, coupled with several ‘top-up’ shops through-out the week.

“This change in consumer behaviour lends itself to the sharp increase in ‘touch and go’ we’re seeing in the supermarket sector.”

Septemer 2017 will mark the 10th anniversary of Barclaycard introducing contactless payments. The maximum value of purchases was originally just £10, rising to £15 in March 2010, £20 in June 2012 and to the current limit of £30 in September 2016.