Recently, the travel industry has witnessed a rapid shift towards contactless payment.
From airlines and hotels to restaurants and tourist attractions, more travel-related businesses are adopting contactless payment options to provide a seamless and hassle-free payment experience to their customers.
In this article, we will explore why contactless payments are becoming so popular in the travel and hospitality industry.
The global contactless payment market size might reach $18 billion, corresponding to a Compound Growth Rate (CAGR) of 11.7%.
Customer expectations have changed post-COVID-19.
Contactless payment options have become mainstream with the rise of third-party integrators and Fintech companies.
Contactless payments have become so popular that customers refuse to book hotel rooms, resorts, or services if the hotels do not offer an online payment option.
We are entering the next phase of the contactless payment process that will make even third-party aggregators redundant.
Apple has introduced new features in its iPhones that will turn the iPhones into payment terminals.
This feature will enable the users to accept and send payments with the tap of their credit card or another iPhone onto the back of their device.
Why Contactless Payment system in the hospitality industry is becoming so popular?
Convenience and speed
The convenience and speed of contactless payments are unmatched. Travellers can tap their cards or mobile phones to pay, eliminating the need for cash or entering a PIN.
It is extremely useful in airports and train stations, where travellers are always in a hurry and need to make quick transactions.
Contactless payments also reduce the waiting time at payment terminals, enhancing the overall customer experience.
Contactless payment is particularly handy when travelling in a foreign country. There language barriers and unfamiliar currency can add to the complexities of payment processing.
Reduced contact and increased hygiene
Post-COVID, travellers are now more aware of the need to reduce physical contact and maintain personal hygiene.
Contactless payments offer increased hygiene and reduce physical contact as people can make payments without cash or touching a payment terminal.
Cashless transactions also help to reduce the spread of infectious diseases and are now a preferred option for most travellers.
Rise of Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL)
Buy Now Pay Later or popularly known as BNPL offers short-term loans to customers to make purchases, usually with zero interest rates.
Due to the popularity of Buy Now Pay Later, the overall usage of credit cards in the USA has lowered significantly.
To avoid paying high credit card interest, more people are opting for BNPL options.
Contactless payments are immensely popular in the travel industry due to their enhanced security features.
The contactless payment system encrypts credit card information making it difficult for fraudsters to steal any information.
It is especially essential in the travel industry, where travellers are often at risk of theft and fraud.
Contactless payments offer an extra layer of security as they are processed without the need to hand over the credit card or enter a PIN on a payment terminal.
This means that travellers can make payments without worrying about their card details being stolen or compromised.
Integration with mobile devices
Mobile wallets like Apple Pay and Google Pay allow travellers to store their payment information on their smartphones and enable them to make payments with just a tap.
This process eliminates the need to carry multiple cards or cash, making the payments process more convenient and secure.
Mobile payment wallets also allow users to easily keep track of their transactions and monitor their spending, making it easier to manage their finances while on the go.
This feature can be particularly useful for travellers on a budget who can keep a tab on their expenses.
Most major airlines, hotels, and travel companies now accept contactless payments, making it easier for travellers to use them for all their travel needs.
This wide acceptance also means that travellers do not need to worry about carrying cash or multiple cards, as contactless payments are accepted everywhere.
Moreover, several small businesses and independent vendors in popular tourist destinations are offering contactless payment options.
This makes it easier for travellers to make payments for smaller purchases like souvenirs, snacks, and beverages.
Overall, contactless payments offer a fast, convenient, secure, and hygienic payment option for travellers in the post-COVID era.
The travel industry has recognized this and is rapidly adopting contactless payment options to provide a better payment experience for travellers.
Contactless payments are environmentally friendly
In addition to their convenience and security features, contactless payments are also environmentally friendly.
Cashless transactions reduce the need for printed receipts and paper invoices. It can help reduce waste and conserve resources.
Travellers can also receive digital receipts for their transactions. It can be easily accessed and stored on their mobile devices, eliminating the need for physical paper receipts.
Contactless payments are cost-effective for businesses
The adoption of contactless payments is not just beneficial for travellers, but also for travel-related businesses.
Contactless payment processing is typically faster and more efficient than traditional payment methods, which can help businesses reduce costs associated with payment processing.
Moreover, cash handling and the associated security measures can be costly and time-consuming for businesses.
By adopting contactless payment methods, businesses can reduce the risks and expenses while handling cash.
Contactless payments offer loyalty and rewards programs
Many contactless payment providers offer loyalty and rewards programs.
This can be a great incentive for travellers to use contactless payments for their travel expenses, as they can earn points, rewards, and discounts for their purchases.
This can help travellers save money on their travel expenses and provide added value to their travel experience.
Contactless payments enable personalized experiences
Contactless payments enable personalized experiences for travellers.
Through contactless payments, travel companies can track and analyse customer spending behaviour. It can be used to provide customised recommendations and offers to travellers.
It can enhance the overall customer experience and improve customer loyalty.
Contactless payments are easy to use for international travel
Contactless payments are also an excellent option for international travellers. As they eliminate the need for travellers to carry multiple currencies or navigate unfamiliar payment systems.
Most contactless payment methods are accepted globally. This can simplify the payment process for travellers and make their travel experience more seamless.
In conclusion, contactless payments offer numerous benefits to both travellers and businesses in the travel industry.
From increased convenience and security to enhanced personalization and cost-effectiveness, contactless payments are revolutionizing the way travellers make payments while on the go.
As the travel industry continues to recover and adapt to the post-COVID era, the adoption of contactless payments is likely to continue to grow and become an integral part of the travel experience.