Imagine you’re looking to buy just one item, like a bottle of shampoo or a packet of chips, and upon reaching the supermarket you see a long queue at the billing counter.
Do you get frustrated and wonder if it’s possible to do something about it? It may seem like it’ll take forever until it’s your turn because of the number of people ahead of you in the queue.
If you think about it, more often than not, you spend a lot of time waiting in line when you go out to buy something. This includes the time it takes for everyone to swipe their Credit Card or Debit Card, punch in their PIN number, waiting for the receipt and then signing on the merchant copy.
But, what if we told you there is a way you can skip the whole swiping and signing process?
Additional Reading: Now, No More Swiping! Contactless Cards Are Here!
That’s right! You can skip the traditional payment process by using payWave. In fact, Visa payWave makes everyday purchases faster and easier. So, hold on tight. We’ll tell you all you need to know about it.
What is PayWave?
PayWave is the latest secure and contactless technology that helps you use your card without having to swipe it. PayWave simply eliminates the traditional steps involved in card payments and is far more secure as well. It is a completely contactless method and is simple, secure, and quick.
This technology enables you to simply ‘wave’ your card on a contactless Point-of-Sale (PoS) terminal to make transactions rather than swiping or dipping your card into PoS terminals. Contactless cards take one-tenth of the time traditionally taken to conduct electronic transactions.
So, in short, payWave cards don’t need to be handed over to the cashier. There is no risk of it being read into a fraudulent device that can copy card information, and it’s so much quicker.
How does it work?
Visa payWave cards have a tiny antenna embedded into the chip, which securely transmits payment instructions to and from a specially adapted card terminal. This technology thus eliminates the need to swipe your card or enter your PIN number.
The payWave cards carry the same multiple layers of security, which ensures that the cardholder is safe from fraudulent or unauthorised transactions. Visa payWave cards work when the card is within 4 cm of the card reader and the terminal can only process one transaction at a time.
This is great because your card doesn’t leave your hand during the transaction and leaves no scope for any kind of fraudulent activity, making it a fully secure method of payment.
Additional Reading: 10 Smart Ways To Avoid Credit Card Fraud
What’s the limit?
You can ‘wave to pay’ your card for all transactions up to Rs. 2,000 without having to enter your PIN or sign a slip. However, any transactions above Rs. 2,000 will require you to follow regular card payment procedures.
Additional Reading: The Pros And Cons Of Increasing The Credit Limit On Your Credit Card
Where can you use your contactless card?
You can use your Visa payWave-enabled card at any retailer displaying the contactless symbol at the point of sale. However, do note that currently there aren’t too many retailers who have switched to this mode of payment. So, your options may be limited to places like Big Bazaar, Future Bazaar, Dominos, Vishal Mega Mart, etc.
What if you don’t want to ‘wave and pay’?
You can still use your Visa payWave-enabled card at ATMs and make PoS transactions by entering you PIN or signing for your transactions.
Additional Reading: How To Choose The Best Credit Card For You
Can you choose not to have the payWave card?
Well, all new and renewed cards are automatically being issued with this facility. So, you don’t really have a choice. However, you have the option to stick to the traditional method of payment that includes swipe and sign even if a contactless terminal is available at your PoS.
How many banks are tied up?
Currently, Axis Bank; Bank of Baroda; Canara Bank; HDFC Bank; ICICI Bank; IDBI; IndusInd; SBI; and Standard Chartered have tied up with Visa to provide payWave enabled cards. So far, Visa has issued over one million contactless cards since its launch in India. This means that more and more merchant locations will soon switch to this payment method.
What is the difference between payWave and PayPass?
While payWave is the technology used by Visa, PayPass is used by MasterCard.
Can PayPass terminals accept payWave card payments?
Yes! You can use your payWave card at a PayPass terminal.
What are the chances of double payments with this method?
It’s possible that this doubt may have popped into your head. Given that you simply hold a card against a reader, you’re probably wondering if the chances of your card making the same payment twice are high.
But, the good thing about payWave is that their terminals are designed to only make one transaction, per card, at a time. These terminals are thoroughly tested and certified so as to only allow your card to read once. As an additional safety feature, each transaction is either ‘completed’ or ‘void’ before another one can take place.
What are the drawbacks of this new technology?
While payWave makes it easier for customers to get through long queues to make payments, this new technology also poses a few risks.
For one, if your card is stolen, your card can be used multiple times to make purchases of Rs. 2,000 before it’s blocked or reported. Also, since this method is receipt-less, it is hard to detect any fraudulent transactions when you don’t have any receipts to compare them to.
Additional Reading: What To Do If Your Credit Card Is Lost
With that being said, contactless cards still aren’t particularly popular yet, owing to the lack of knowledge and acceptance among consumers. It’s a bit ironical that the same feature that makes it so secure also poses a risk should the card be misused.
Click here for a few tips to keep your Credit Card safe.