Contactless payments are all the rage. Many credit cards have already been issued with built-in NFC technology which lets you make contactless payments by placing your card near the terminal. Inserting or swiping your card is no longer necessary. It is probable that all Swiss credit card issuers will eventually adopt NFC technology.
Swiss debit cards are also being fitted with contactless technology. Hypobank Lenzburg launched the first contactless debit card in Switzerland at the end of 2014.
Now, the leading provider of financial services in Switzerland is hopping on the bandwagon. From now on, PostFinance is offering an NFC-enabled PostFinance card. The contactless functionality will automatically be integrated into newly issued cards, including cards for new customers and replacement cards issued to existing customers. Customers with a PostFinance private account (checking/current account) are eligible to obtain a PostFinance card.
Contactless technology makes payments at terminals somewhat easier. After a one-time authorization, there is no need to enter a PIN to make transactions of up to 40 francs. The presence or absence of an NFC logo at the terminal indicates whether or not contactless payments are accepted.
Payments above 40 francs require PIN authentication. It is likely that the PIN-free limit will be removed in the coming years, as necessary security measures are developed.
PostFinance estimates that all 3 million of its PostFinance debit cards will be fitted with NFC capabilities by the year 2018.