CONTACTLESS spending limits are set to rise to £45 from next week in a further bid to reduce the need for physical contact with card machines.
Customers have been encouraged to go cashless and use cards for payments as much as possible, in order to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.
While the limit for contactless spending in stores was £30, this is set to increase to £45 from April 1.
The British Retail Consortium said the new increase will help reduce the need for physical contact with devices – such as card machines - where customers are required to input their pin number.
However, retailers have warned it may take some time for the new limit to be applied everywhere.
The British Retail Consortium’s head of payments policy, Andrew Cregan, said: “The last contactless limit increase to £30 took two years to implement but, given the extraordinary circumstances we face today, this new £45 limit will be rolled out from next week.
“Some shops will take longer to make the necessary changes, given the strain they’re under.
“In the meantime, most customers can continue to make contactless payments for higher amounts using their smartphone.”
Mobile phone users are already able to make contactless payments above £30, provided the retailer accepts, by holding their phone over the card reader and entering their normal card pin on their phone.
While there is no universal limit on the amount a customer can spend when using Apple Pay, some retailers put their own limitation in place.
The BRC said the increase to £45 is aimed at reducing the need for physical contact with pin entry devices at points of sale.
Other countries have also announced increases to minimise the handling of cash, with the contactless limit in Ireland set to rise from €30 to €50.