The spending limit for contactless cards is set to be lifted from £20 to £30, as payments made using the technology treble in the last 12 months.

Data published by the UK Cards Association shows that £2.32 billion was spent using NFC-enabled credit and debit cards during 2014 - a 255 percent increase from £653.4 million in 2013. 


A total of 319.2 million transactions were made by UK consumers, up from 100.4 million during the previous year. 

"Contactless has now firmly stepped into the mainstream,” said Richard Koch, head of policy at the UK Cards Association.

“With usage soaring every month last year, we’ve seen people flocking to contactless payments as they switch away from cash. For retailers, contactless means quicker queues at the tills and greater convenience for their customers.”

Usage is likely to continue to grow in future too, with the plans to increase the spending limit in September from its current maximum of £20, according to the BBC. Upon launching in 2007, the initial limit had been £10.

With Visa predicting over 500 million contactless payments to be made between in the next year, the technology has become more pervasive in recent years, with many retailers – from Marks and Spencer to Boots and Lidl - allowing purchases of up to £20.

Last year, Transport for London announced that it would enable passengers on the London Underground to pay for journeys, with the technology previously rolled out on London buses. 

“We have seen over 41 million journeys made across London using contactless within just five months,” said Shashi Verma, TfL's director of customer experience.

“Using contactless payments to travel can save our customers time, they don't need to stop to top-up an Oyster card, or buy a ticket and can benefit from daily and Monday to Sunday capping."

Barclaycard even trialled contactless gloves over the Christmas period, while Cancer Research UK announced a trial of contactless payments on its shop-fronts last month, enabling the public to make donations 24 hours a day