WHSmith to introduce contactless payments

Major high street retailer WHSmith has announced today that it will be introducing contactless payment terminals at a number of its travel stores over the coming months.

In a partnership with card payments acquiring business Streamline & payment services giant Visa Europe, WHSmith will be rolling out the new POS system to 46 of its stores at major travel locations.

The initial stores to provide the service will be at its Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted airport stores in London and its shops at mainline train stations across the UK, with the systems expected to be up and running at these locations over the next three months.

Matt Roswell, Chief Commercial Officer at Streamline, commented: “Contactless payments are ideally suited to time-poor shoppers, such as those travelling through busy rail and airport locations.

“We‘re confident that contactless will enhance the customer experience and reduce transaction times in these very busy stores.”

WHSmith has been keen in the past to employ new technologies to make its customer checkouts more efficient, having been one of the early adopters of self-service tills which have now been rolled-out across its store estate.

Efficiency has been the main goal across the retailer‘s operations over the last few years, with the company still regularly producing profits despite a consistent decline in like-for-like sales.

These new VisapayWave contactless terminals will enable consumer to simply touch a reader with their cards to pay in store, with an initial limit of £15 per transaction which will increase to £20 from June 1st.

Mark Austin, Head of Contactless at Visa Europe, said: “The introduction of contactless at these key travel sites is ideal for consumers who often need to complete a purchase quickly prior to catching a train or plane.

“We are delighted that WHSmith has decided to adopt contactless technology and believe the introduction of this service will be of great value to their customers.”


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