While paying with your NFC-enabled smartphone isn't all that common yet, NFC-enabled bank cards are taking off in a big way. Visa today announced plans to roll-out contactless payment cards to RBS and NatWest customers in the United Kingdom. The credit card company said over two million eligible customers will get a contactless card over the next year.
"We're delighted to announce that RBS and NatWest will be rolling out Visa contactless cards in 2013," said Mark Austin, Vice President of Contactless at Visa Europe.
"Many major merchants like Marks & Spencer, the Post Office and London's buses are now accepting contactless payment as the service becomes a high street reality. We are expecting to see contactless transaction volumes quadruple in 2013 as momentum in this exciting space continues to grow."
The news should give NFC a bit of a boost in the UK market. Right now, contactless payments are accepted at over 150,000 terminals in the United Kingdom (590,000 across all of Europe). That figure looks to rise as the number of people touting contactless cards increases. Visa reports that there are almost 50 million contactless cards in circulation in Europe already. The company says 30 million of those cards are in circulation in the United Kingdom.