Centra will be the first to accept contactless payments, supporting the NFC Visa Debit cards to be made available from Bank of Ireland in late 2011.
These new cards will let customers pay for items for €15 or less using near field communications (NFC), allowing them to hold their cards over a terminal for less than a second to pay for goods.
Centra will accept these payments from late 2011 in selected stores. The retailer will then roll out support for the rest of its stores in 2012.
“With the launch of contactless payments, paying for your cup of coffee in the morning or a sandwich for lunch will be easier and faster than ever,” said Tara Clifford, Centra marketing manager.
“Centra is delighted to be leading the introduction of contactless payment technology in the Irish market. As the No 1 convenience store in Ireland, we are committed to investing in innovation which will ensure we continue to provide the best service to our loyal customers.”
The contactless Visa Debit cards are being launched in the hopes of reducing cash and cheque payments. Ireland is one of the highest users of paper-based payments in Europe.
The contactless cards are subject to the same level of consumer protection as all Visa cards. Once cards are used a certain number of times or above a certain value, consumers will be prompted to input a PIN to complete their purchases.