Mastercard has announced a temporary increase to the contactless payment limits in New Zealand from NZ$80 to NZ$200, as part of a PaymentsNZ industry initiative. Rolling out progressively across retailers and cards from today, the increase will enable all Mastercard cardholders to make more transactions without the need to touch a PIN pad.

In raising the limit, New Zealand joins other countries around the world including Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom, that are adopting measures to help mitigate further spread of COVID-19. By permitting a larger number of transactions to take place using contactless technology, fewer purchases will require customers to touch potentially infectious surfaces, handle cash or use a pen to process payments.

As of today, and as part of its ongoing commitment to providing simple, fast and safe ways to pay, Mastercard has partnered with local payment industries in more than 30 countries around the world to increase contact limits.

“In the current, ever changing climate, it’s crucial that Mastercard provides all Mastercard cardholders with freedom, choice and peace of mind in the way they pay for their purchases. Contactless payments can offer a simple, safe and hygienic way to pay, and Mastercard is working rapidly with its industry partners to guide and support them through this effort," said Ruth Riviere, country manager for New Zealand, Mastercard.

Mastercard is committed to supporting its cardholders and customers through this challenging time. In addition to championing contactless limit increases around the world, Mastercard also announced over US$20 million dollars of initial grants to fund clinical trials for potential treatments of COVID-19 through its Therapeutics Accelerator partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Wellcome. It has committed US$250 million to support small businesses, and launched its Girls4Tech™ STEM curriculum online, enabling parents and teachers to access its comprehensive creative educational resources from home.