Can I make contactless payments overseas?

All over the world, leading banks are issuing millions of contactless credit and debit cards to consumers, with 2.37 billion chip payment cards now in use. Contactless payments are also developing fast on mobile phones, with platforms like Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay joining national schemes like France’s Kwixo.


Although not yet universally accepted, the method’s speed and convenience have been embraced by transport networks, international retail and restaurant groups.


Wherever you see the contactless transactions symbol you can use your contactless card but be aware that payment limits may vary locally. You’ll also need to check with your bank for information on any fees for payment abroad. If you want to use your smartphone, you’ll have to check that your phone includes NFC technology, and that the manufacturer or scheme you’re signed up to is supported in the country you’re visiting.


If you don’t see the contactless symbol, don’t worry. You can still make payments using the normal chip and PIN method.


Contactless around the world: Did you know?

  • Contactless payment is most widely adopted in Australia, with 60% of card transactions being contactless.
  • The United States is one of the last countries to migrate to EMV (an open-standard for smart card payments chip technology).

In Asia, the number of unique contactless users grew by 49% from 2013 to 2014.