As well as prompting a shift towards online shopping, Covid has affected how people pay in-store. We explain how to get the most out of contactless and ‘contact-free’ payments.

Research has shown that the Covid-19 virus can survive for up to 28 days on common surfaces, such as banknotes and mobile phone screens1. Due to hygiene concerns, many retailers, including major supermarket chains, have encouraged consumers to use contactless payments.

Both Mastercard and Visa announced increased spending limits for contactless payments during the first national Coronavirus lockdown. This meant that consumers could make higher value contactless purchases in-store without having to enter a PIN, sign a transaction receipt or use cash.

There has been a huge rise in contactless card and mobile phone payments. In May 2020, Mastercard reported that nearly 80% of all its transactions across Europe were contactless2.

In some European countries, the share of Visa contactless payments has more than doubled year-on-year. In fact, Visa processed an additional half a billion touch-free payments, completed without PIN, in the six months since contactless limits were increased3.

The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated existing, underlying payment trends. This includes the move away from cash to digital payments, specifically to more contactless payments in-store.

To take advantage of the shift to digital payments by accepting contactless or to find out how to configure the new contactless limits on your terminals, e-mail


Quick-fix solutions with long-term benefits

In response to social distancing guidelines, there has also been an uptake in ‘contact-free’ solutions, where shoppers avoid contact with terminal equipment or staff. This includes kerbside pick-up, self-service via kiosk, vending machines, scan-and-pay, pay-in-aisle or pay-at-table solutions.

Clearly, some of these ‘contact-free’ options require hardware (e.g. kiosks or hand-held scanners). Yet others require software only and can be rolled quickly and easily. Depending on the implementation, what may have come about as a Covid-related quick fix can continue to deliver longer term benefits.

Take pay-by-link, for example. Customers receive a secure link via e-mail or text. They click on this to enter their payment details to complete the purchase. It’s an additional, easy way to pay and be paid. Yet it also powers various ‘contact-free’ solutions, making it relevant post-pandemic.

PXP Financial has a partnership with Prommt to enable secure pay-by-link or SMS payment. The new functionality is available to existing PXP Financial customers now via the ANYpay gateway. For more information on completing the Prommt set up into ANYpay or designing customer-facing e-mail and text messages, e-mail or complete your details on the contact form below.


1 ‘CSIRO scientists publish new research on SARS-COV-2 virus ‘survivability’’, Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation press release, 12 October 2020,

2 ‘Mastercard press release, 28 May 2020,

3‘ 500 million additional touch-free Visa payments as European contactless limits increase, Visa press release, 10 October 2020,