During the group stage of the FIFA Women’s World Cup, Visa found that fans across the host cities in France made purchases using contactless payment technology 51 percent of the time. The financial services giant, which is FIFA’s Official Payment Services Partner, says these purchases were performed using a variety of mechanisms, including smartphones, wristbands and other wearables, and, of course, contactless payment cards.
Visa analysis, which was focused on the group stage of the international soccer event (from June 7th to 20th), offers an indication of the growing popularity of contactless, ‘tap-to-pay’ transactions across different form factors. Visa says there were over 1,600 upgraded POS terminals in World Cup stadiums designed to accept contactless payments, illustrating the company’s efforts to accommodate and encourage contactless spending habits.
What’s more, Visa says that when analyzing the spending habits of international Visa cardholders in FIFA’s smaller host cities, it saw a 140 percent increase in tap-to-pay transactions outside of the stadium.
These are important trends for Visa, and for the many other companies involved in the payments industry, which need to respond to changing attitudes about the convenience of contactless payments, while new regulations are mandating stronger payments security. This points to a major opportunity for the stakeholders currently setting the building blocks for biometric payment cards – this includes both Visa and Mastercard, not to mention many biometrics specialists – which can satisfy both sets of demands by scanning fingerprints during contactless transactions.