5 Reasons why “Contactless Payment” doesn’t work
This has been bugging me for a while. My bank replaced my perfectly working debit and credit cards and introduced “Contactless Payments” enabled cards. After ignoring this hot and new feature for a while I got a reminder to “go and try it” which actually prompted me to put the new payment method to the test. Here are my observations and reasons why it doesn’t work for me.
1) It’s not “Contactless”
Unless I’m wrong I still have to touch the pad or sensor when I want to pay? That’s not “contactless” in my book. If anything it is “touch and pay” which incidentally VISA is now using to explain the technology (http://www.visa.co.uk/en/products/contactless.aspx).
NB: VISA also describe the logo as a “Ripple” but I think it looks more like a “Signal”.
2) Not all retailers are offering it
And the ones that do often say it’s not working or install the machine incorrectly (see photo). Upside down displays don’t fill me with confidence and trust.
3) You don’t get a receipt
On the few occasions where I have paid using this method I didn’t get a receipt and was unsure whether the payment went through at all or more than once. Apparently, “to help speed up your transaction”, you don’t get a receipt unless you ask for one. I wonder how much research they conducted when they designed the end-to-end process.
4) It messes with my Oyster Card
My brand new credit card (a result of mapping a customer journey for a balance transfer) interfers with my oyster card. I put my bank cards and oyster card in my wallet and until now had no problems touching in to enter the London Underground. One morning I only got error beeps and first I thought the touch pad or oyster card was faulty. By the time I worked out what went wrong a queue of angry passengers built up behind me leaving me uncomfortable and frustrated.
5) No one knows the limit of how much you can pay
Apparently you can pay for small amounts up to £15 (or is it £20?).
I don’t know about you but I’m happy with PIN payments and don’t see anything wrong with it. Entering a PIN doesn’t take too much time and my kids enjoy pressing the green button after I enter the numbers.
I don’t think that a technology that messes with my travel (oyster card) and leave me uncertain whether I paid in the few places that do offer it will win me over.
I hate to think about the cost of replacing old debit and credit cards with new “contactless” ones that only few people are using. Let’s see if the mobile phone version fares better. You’ll currently see adverts for this feature everywhere with a massive £50 incentive to make people use it. Surely, a well design process or doesn’t need incentivising?