We’re Wasting Millions of Hours in Line With Those New Chip Credit Cards
Business + Economy

We’re Wasting Millions of Hours in Line With Those New Chip Credit Cards


Anyone who’s stood in a slow-moving checkout line this year knows that while the new chip credit cards may be a lot more secure, they’re also slower to process than the old magnetic strip cards.

A new report from payment tech firm Cayan finds that each consumer will spend a whopping five-and-a-half hours per year waiting for EMV (Europay, MasterCard and Visa) transactions to go through. The report estimates that businesses will experience 116 million hours of additional checkout time thanks to slow EMV.

While some processors have announced plans that would trim the time it takes for a transaction to go through at the point of sale, consumers and retailers are already frustrated. A recent survey by Square found that consumers are not happy with EMV cards, and the top reason for unhappiness is the slow speed of transactions.

Related: Why Your Credit Card Company Will Now Think Twice Before Ripping You Off

That could present an opportunity for the mobile payments industry, since payment methods like Apply Pay or Google Wallet offer the security of EMV with faster checkout speeds.

Although adoption of mobile wallets has been notoriously slow among American consumers, those who have used such payment methods report much higher satisfaction and cite speed as one of the top reasons for use, according to the Square report.

It has gotten easier this year for retailers to start accepting mobile payments, since the terminals required to accept the new credit card chips generally can also accept payment via near-field communication, the technology used by most mobile payment systems.