Britons spent £7.75 billion in 2015 using contactless cards

Contactless card being used at payment terminal

Spending on contactless cards more than tripled in 2015 to reach £7.75 billion, according to the latest data from The UK Cards Association. In 2014, £2.32 billion was spent using contactless.

There were a total of 1.05 billion contactless purchases in 2015, up 228 per cent on the previous year. Contactless spending was up 233 per cent on 2014.



Around half of all debit and credit cards are now contactless, with a total of 79.3 million cards featuring the technology.

The monthly data shows that contactless spending grew to £1.2 billion in December, a rise of 17 per cent on the previous month. There were 140 million contactless transactions in December – equivalent to 52 every second.


One in eight

Graham Peacop, Chief Executive of The UK Cards Association, said: “The swift increase in contactless usage continued apace last year, with nearly one in eight card transactionsnow using the technology. Whether it’s to stock up in the supermarket, travel to work, or buy your lunch, contactless is a fast, easy and secure way to make payments.

“With a contactless payment, you no longer have to fumble around for the loose change in your purse or wallet. You can simply pay using a contactless card or with your mobile phone.”


Debit still king

The UKCA also said that across all debit and credit cards, total spending rose to £53 billion in December, with consumers preferring to use debit over credit for their Christmas shopping, with monthly spending of £37.6 billion and £15.4 billion respectively.

Total annual card spending reached £622 billion in 2015 from 13.4 billion transactions, up from respective figures of £574 billion and 12.0 billion in 2014.

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