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Visa touts contactless payments at World Cup venues

Approximately one in every five (17 percent) purchases with Visa cards at World Cup soccer matches in Russia used contactless payment technology, including smartphones, bracelets and rings, according to a press release from the card network.

Within the stadiums the share of contactless payments was 54 percent, inclusive of purchases made by fans from Russia and abroad.

Visa is the exclusive payment service in all stadiums where payment cards are accepted at the World Cup.

On average across the 11 host cities, Visa cardholders spent 3,575 rubles (US$56.65) per transaction, with fans from the U.S. spending the most — followed by China and Mexico in second and third, respectively.

"Many of the international visitors attending this summer's tournament have never been to Russia before and we're excited to be providing them with the ultimate tournament experience, powered by the speed and ease of Visa's digital payments, which are increasingly happening on contactless cards, devices and wearables," Ekaterina Petelina, country manager for Visa Russia, said in the release. "In the stadiums particularly, fans are using contactless payment technology to speed through the lines and quickly get back to the action on the pitch."

The opening match between Russia and Saudi Arabia on June 14 — where fans from 123 countries filled the stadium — saw the highest volume of payment transactions. The June 17 match between Germany and Mexico saw the second highest volume of transactions. The average in-stadium transaction amount for all matches during the first five days of tournament play was 1,682 rubles ($26.66), according to the release.