People in the UK will be able to pay for items by scanning a QR code with their smartphone from Wednesday, PayPal has announced.

The digital payment giant has introduced a feature to its app which will allow users to scan a code and complete a transaction without having to touch a payment terminal. PayPal said the feature, which has gone live in the UK and 27 other countries, can help more people go cash-free and maintain social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic.

Many businesses have encouraged customers to use contactless card payments where possible in order to reduce both the handling of cash and unnecessary contact between people during the virus outbreak.

“We know that in the current environment, buying and selling goods in a health-conscious, safe and secure way is front of mind for many people around the world. As the coronavirus situation has evolved, we have seen a surge in demand for digital payments to transition to include new in-person environments and situations,” explains John Kunze, Senior Vice President of Branded Experiences, PayPal. “The rollout of QR codes for buyers and sellers not only incorporates the safety, security and convenience of using PayPal in-person, but also takes into consideration ongoing social distancing requirements, even as we start to see some restrictions be lifted around the world.”

Lisa Scott, Senior Director, PayPal, adds: “Covid-19 has changed the shopping experience in the UK as we know it. The need for security and convenience is there, as always, but we now need to be able to sell and buy in a way that is quick, safe and involves limited social contact. Digital payments, and this QR code functionality, provides people and small businesses in the UK with the means to pay and get paid during the crisis and hopefully thrive in the future.”

Additionally, to continue PayPal’s efforts in assisting our customers during this difficult period, for a limited time, the company is waiving its standard seller transaction fees incurred on for sales conducted using a QR Code.


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