Shoppers keen to set their own contactless card limit

Richer and poorer households disagree over Christmas contactless spending limits

Nearly half (48%) of shoppers would like to customise their contactless card transaction limit, or would like to the ability to do so, according to new research* from card machine provider Paymentsense.

For those shoppers wanting a customisable limit, just over a quarter (26%) would immediately raise it, but nearly 1 in 5 people (18%) would lower it. The top reason for those wanting to raise the limit is that £30 is too low (44%).

For shoppers keen to lower the limit (20% of those surveyed), the main reason was concern over fraud or theft (53%). A further 23% of shoppers want to lower the limit to help manage fluctuating finances.

When it comes to Christmas shopping, the study also revealed divisions between higher and lower income households. On average, over a third (38%) of those on a lower household income (up to £30,000) would not raise the £30 limit over Christmas, fearing overspending on presents and food and drink.

In contrast, only 12% of respondents with a higher household income (over £50,000) share this worry. In fact, two-thirds (67%) of shoppers from wealthier households would increase the limit pre-Christmas. The main reasons are increased spending (29%), saving time (21%) and preferring not to carry cash due to worries about being pickpocketed or losing their wallet (17%).

Guy Moreve, head of marketing at Paymentsense said: “As we hit the main Christmas shopping period, there’s a clear desire for shoppers to customise their contactless limits. Some are keen to have a lower limit to help budget and control spending, while others want to raise it for convenience .

“Contactless card payment is fast becoming the norm, with 80% of those we surveyed owning one. Shoppers now expect to use them almost everywhere – both in a traditional or contactless manner,” Moreve added.

*Commissioned research took place from 4 to 5 October 2017 amongst a nationally representative sample of 1,029 people

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By using the buying power of many, card machine provider Paymentsense acts as a giant merchant to negotiate the lowest card processing fees on behalf of its customers – whether they are in retail, hospitality, transport or have a trade. Established in 2010, it has grown from a two-person enterprise into a multi-award-winning company dedicated to helping small businesses meet the growing demand for card payments. The company offers a range of card payment solutions – from Card Machines to Online Payment Gateways and Virtual Terminals – and provides merchant services for around 60,000 small and medium businesses around the UK.