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BPFI Payments Monitor – Contactless Update October 2020

Over €28 million spent per day in October using contactless payments as contactless now makes up almost half of all card payments

The latest contactless payments figures published today by Banking & Payments Federation Ireland (BPFI) show that some 1.8 million contactless payments were made per day in October 2020 valued at €28.1 million.

Outlining the key figures and trends, Gill Murphy, Head of Payment Schemes, BPFI, said: “October saw a total of 55.8 million contactless payment made over the month worth over €870 million. And while these are substantial numbers, the figures do show a fall-off on previous months with usage falling to its lowest level since June with Level 5 Covid-19 restrictions taking effect from mid-October.  However, despite the somewhat lower usage figures during October, contactless payments are still at record numbers and this is further reflected by the fact that they now account for about half of all total credit and debit card payments.

Interestingly we can see from Central Bank data that when the Level 5 restrictions were introduced on 19 October, consumers responded by increasing spending in the two days before the restrictions took effect (up 22.2% week-on-week) and reducing it in the following five days (down 15.4% week-on-week).  Spending has recovered somewhat in the weeks that followed. Additionally, the value of cash withdrawals, which had been trending downward since early September, fell to levels last seen in June after the Covid-19 restrictions were tightened.”

“With most retail and hospitality businesses closed throughout November and Christmas-related spending in December, we would expect to see a greater share of card spending online and higher average payment values in the last two months of the year. This will likely reduce the contactless share of payments.”

Contact: Jillian Heffernan, Head of Communications, 087 9016880 or

Notes: Banking & Payments Federation Ireland (BPFI) represents the banking, payments and fintech sector in Ireland.  Together with its affiliates, the Federation of International Banks in Ireland, and the Fintech & Payments Association of Ireland, BPFI has some 100 member institutions and associates, including licensed domestic and foreign banks and institutions operating in the financial marketplace here.

The BPFI Contactless Payments October 2020 is available for download below in PDF format.