The category experienced the third biggest rise in ‘touch and go’ transactions over the past year behind public transport (532 per cent) and pharmacies £207 per cent), the data revealed.
Contactless spending in fast food outlets was also up 108 per cent. Restaurants witnessed a 104 per cent increase and caterers, ranking 10th on the list, saw a 96 per cent uptake in the speedy payment method.
The findings come as The UK Cards Association revealed that spending on contactless cards rose more than three-fold in 2015 to reach £7.75 billion – treble the amount in 2014 when contactless transactions accounted for £2.32 billion.
Tami Hargreaves, commercial director, digital consumer payments at Barclaycard, said an increasing number of merchants were choosing to accept contactless payments in response to demand, leading to an ‘explosion’ in contactless spending across the board.
“The £30 limit increase has also provided opportunities for consumers to make contactless payments for larger purchases – such as a full basket of groceries at the supermarket or a round of drinks in the pub – which goes some way to explain why volumes rocketed in 2015,” she acknowledged.
“We expect to see contactless spending continue to grow throughout 2016 as both consumers and businesses enjoy the speed and convenience of touch and go payments.”