Chip Card Profile Business Considerations

MasterCard Contactless

Paypass Support


The speed and convenience of contactless enables issuers to capture more low-value cash transactions on card and broadens acceptance in high-speed environments such as transit.

The U.S. migration to EMV is expected to accelerate the adoption of contactless payments as merchants upgrade their POS systems to support chip transactions. The MasterCard EMV Roadmap fosters contactless deployment, bringing speed and convenience of MasterCard contactless to consumers and merchants, while helping issuers capture more cash spend on card. MasterCard offers Payment Card Industry (PCI) audit and Account Data Compromise (ADC) relief to merchants that support both contact and contactless payments.

As more merchants upgrade terminals to contactless EMV, issuers have the opportunity to expand electronic acceptance with Tap & Go™ payment for low-value transactions using MasterCard contactless.

contactless Helps Drive Higher Transaction Volume and Loyalty

When contactless is added to MasterCard consumer credit and debit accounts, contactless accounts1 move to top of wallet.2 What's more, the increases on contactless accounts are generated not only from new tapped transactions, but also from a significant rise in contact transactions.
Together, they translate to meaningful bottom-line impact. For issuers, contactless is a proven feature to drive consumer preference that, in turn, drives top-of-wallet behavior. Research confirms that contactless:


Contactless boost

Contactless Opens New Market Segments

Transit is a large, fast-growing market for contactless payments. It's attractive because using contactless for fare payments will help convert cash to card—and raise card volume. More importantly, transit fares are everyday, low-ticket purchases that may drive top-of-wallet spend and loyalty. Transit agencies are making fare handling easier for consumers by replacing cash with electronic contactless payments.

Two transit agencies in the United States, Chicago Transit Authority and Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority, will launch contactless payments this year–a revolutionary change in fare collection by transit agencies worldwide. This is an important milestone in achieving MasterCard's vision for everyday payments in a World Beyond Cash—and capturing more card volume for our issuer financial institutions.

Merchants Worldwide Are Adopting Contactless

Worldwide, contactless deployments have risen 64 percent in the past year alone. A proven technology, contactless is now available in more than 50 countries.7 contactless point-of-sale installations at major merchants in the U.S. are speeding consumers through checkout at hypermarkets, quick-serve restaurants, pharmacies, transit points of entry, and more.


Implementing contactless functionality on M/Chip cards adds the cost of the radio frequency (RF) antenna embedded within the card. But long term, the incremental costs may be offset by the increase in spend as the card moves to top of wallet. Implementing contactless also requires support of offline acceptance, as well as additional steps to prepare and personalize the card. Support for contactless EMV payments does not impact liability shift benefits.

  1. Contactless accounts = accounts with one or more tapped transactions in a designated performance period.
  2. Top of wallet = 12 months active (one or more transactions/month for 12 consecutive months).
  3. Unless otherwise indicated, all performance data is U.S. data from MasterCard Data Warehouse. Please contact your MasterCard account representative for other available regions.
  4. Lift is derived from a subset of contactless-enabled cards that tapped in FY2011 and had observable nontap activity in FY2010. The net lift reflects the overall lift in tap and swipe spend, minus the swipe-only lift (i.e., "BAU").
  5. Among two populations statistically matched for spend. Attrition is measured as the percentage of accounts that became inactive for six months.
  6. Accounts that did not tap.
  7. MasterCard customer-reported data.