Since the outbreak of COVID-19 in 2023, the World Health Organization urged people to use contactless payment technology where possible due to the spread of coronavirus that could easily spread through surfaces and other items that keeps going back and forth into millions of hands: money.
I have witnessed like everyone else the sudden burst of contactless payment technology providing all sorts of devices that would make our daily purchases easy and secure. In a study conducted by Mastercard in March 2023, it indicates that 70 per cent of respondent in the Middle East and Africa are using several forms of contactless payments for safety purposes, and 81 per cent say they will continue to use it post-pandemic.
Contactless payment comes in different forms of mobile and digital wallets including credit and debit cards, smartphones, smart cards, key fobs or other devices, including wearables (watches, rings…). Those means are powered by secure payment systems such as Samsung Pay, Apple Pay, Google Pay, Fitbit Pay, or any bank mobile application that supports contactless payments.
The Benefits of Contactless Payment:
It Saves Time
When you go grocery shopping, ever had to wait in line for the cashier and felt like this is taking forever? This problem can easily subside when contactless payment is widely used by the public. It’s estimated that contactless payment takes about 15 seconds, with less handling of cash and the card’s process of entering a pin, queues are less likely to form. 78 percent of UAE respondents have said contactless payment methods have been easy to adopt and that they are up to 10 times faster than other in-person payment methods, enabling customers to get in and out of stores faster.
Think about all the time you can save up when you go grocery shopping and the improvement this will imply on shops if the number of cashier tills’ employees were distributed in other areas in shops.
When it comes to the issue of security, certain myths are circled around contactless payment, making it seem more prone to theft, but the truth is online authorization, risk management and real-time fraud detection systems are used to detect potential fraudulent activity for any credit or debit card payment transaction. Better yet, if you notice that your card or payment device got stolen, you can easily contact your bank to freeze your account or to amend fraudulent payments.
Instead of being constrained by the amount of cash you’re holding, you can easily make large amounts of payments without having to worry about having enough cash left in your wallet or going to the nearest ATM to withdraw more money. This is great news for business owners; providing devices that ensure contactless payments can increase your sales amount and gain more customers that are always looking for the faster and more convenient way of payment. For example, ADCB’s Pace Pay provides your customers with the convenience of paying by card for all services and it also allows sending online payment links for home delivery services.
As a consumer, I have been using phone apps to process payments. A variety of apps came out such as Samsung Pay, Apple Pay and Google Pay to make our payment experience easier. Instead of handing a physical card, I can use my smartphone to pay for any purchase and limit physical contact to avoid being exposed to this virus. This will also help me when I forget my credit card; I can easily find my bank account information on my phone to process payments.
Contactless Payment Post-Pandemic
The influence of contactless payments has spread out worldwide due to its flexibility and velocity. In fact, according to Mastercard’s study, 83 percent of UAE respondents said they will continue to use contactless post-pandemic. It is the best option to keep our communities safe and healthy, and to minimize the amount of theft and fraud around the world by using safe and secured means of payments.