Barclays has announced that UK discount retail chain Wilkinsons will trial contactless payments in 25 stores, with the potential to expand the service to all 337 stores. With over four million customers a week, Wilkinsons is the first in its sector to trial contactless, says Barclays.
In the trial, customers will be able to quickly pay for purchases of £15 or less by simply tapping their card against a reader – no PIN or signature required.
“We know that many of our customers have to shop at peak times and this is when queues can occur,” said a spokesperson for Wilkinsons. “We believe contactless will help those customers who are under time pressure and wish to buy goods below £15. Contactless also fits perfectly with our aim to constantly improve customer service and satisfaction by harnessing the latest retail technologies.”
Richard Armstong, head of UK payment acceptance at Barclaycard, comments: “The sheer quantity of transactions made across the UK at Wilkinson stores will have a major impact on the progression of contactless payments. By 2012 we expect contactless to be a mainstream payment technology.”
Wilkinsons is the latest in a growing list of UK retailers to offer contactless payments, including Little Chef, EAT, Prêt-A-Manger, The Co-Operative and Wembley Arena.
According to Barclays, the number of contactless terminals in the UK has risen from 25,000 to 52,000 in the past year, and the volume of contactless transactions has continued to grow rapidly, doubling every 6 to 8 months.