Mellow Mummy: I'm Untouchable (contactless) : Taking life as it comes...

Friday, 13 March 2015

I'm Untouchable (contactless)

Three facts you probably didn't know about me, the Mellow Mummy.

1. As well as being one of the mellowest of mummies, I work a 35 hour week (with one early afternoon to take the girls swimming).
2. I design and build banking software for one of the biggest financial services technology companies on the planet.
3. I am increasingly becoming an expert in the technology behind the electronic transmission of payments from A to B.

I don't often talk work on my blog, especially not the details of real-time electronic payments (!!!) but increasingly, I'm finding that my work life is colliding with my "real" family life.  Every week that goes by, I find that the way that I pay for things for the family is changing.  I'm now questioning the need to teach Lara about the details of 5 pence coins, 10 pence coins and one pound coins when in fact I should really be teaching her about how to set up a standing order, or use a contactless debit card!

These days, more and more Current accounts offer a contactless card which can be used to pay in store or at payment points across the country without having to put your card into a reader, or enter a PIN.  You can pay for small value items with a contactless card and research from TSB shows that their customer's average contactless spend is between £6 and £7 for any one transaction.

By Tom Page from London, UK ( [CC BY-SA 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

For me, contactless features in two places in my daily life.  Travel, and food.  

It wasn't until very recently that I realised that you no longer need to have an Oyster card to travel single journeys in central London, but that you can use a registered contactless card instead.  This is really useful for me because I don't travel into London regularly so had never found it worth my while to get an Oyster card but now I don't need to faff around buying a ticket and know that I will only ever pay the most appropriate fee for my journey.

The other place where contactless saves me time is in the pub on a Friday lunch time (another secret revealed).  A beer and a burger is so easy and quick to order when you don't have to do anything more than tap your debit card on a reader - and time is important when you only have a 1 hour time slot for lunch.

What do you think, should we be teaching our kids the art of debit cards over the art of cash?

Disclosure: This post has been created in partnership with TSB
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