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FAQs: Mastercard Debit Card

Contactless Payments. Make payments quickly and securely.

Mastercard® Contactless General Questions

What is Mastercard contactless?
Mastercard contactless is like having exact change wherever you go. A simple tap of your card, key fob, or smartphone is all it takes to pay at checkout.

Why should I use contactless?
There are many benefits to contactless payments:

  • It's like having exact change wherever you go, so you don't have to worry about carrying around cash or fishing for coins.
  • You're in control because your contactless-enabled card or device never leaves your hand at checkout.
  • You get better record-keeping of all your purchases than you do when using cash.
  • It's fast and ideal at places where speed is essential, like stadiums, fast food restaurants, gas stations, and more.

How does contactless work?
Contactless uses a hidden, embedded computer chip and radio frequency antennae. After you tap your contactless card or device at checkout, payment details are sent wirelessly to the Mastercard network. If using a mobile phone, moments after you tap, you'll receive a payment confirmation and be on your way.

What is a key fob or payment tag?
A key fob or payment tag is a special contactless device that you can attach to your key chain. Card issuers sometimes provide this as a companion to your traditional primary Mastercard plastic card.

Do I have to treat my Mastercard contactless card or device in any special way?
Treat your contactless card or device as you would any other credit, debit, or prepaid card. Always know where your contactless card or device is and keep it in a safe place. And be sure to keep a record of all of your card numbers, expiration dates, and emergency phone numbers.

Security Benefits of a Mastercard® Debit Card

Is contactless secure?
Yes. Contactless payments provide secure encryption technology and Zero Liability Protection and are as secure as your regular card.

  • You're in control - your contactless-enabled card or device never leaves your hands to make a payment
  • No accidental payments - your contactless-enabled card or device must be close to the reader at checkout to work
  • Not billed twice - even if you tap more than once at checkout, you'll only get billed once for your purchase

What do I do if my contactless card or device has been lost or stolen?
If you've lost your card or you suspect unauthorized activity on your account, immediately contact the financial institution that issued your card.
If you don't know your card issuer's number, contact Mastercard and we will assist you in finding that information.

What is Mastercard’s® Zero Liability Policy?
If your card is lost or stolen, you’re covered by Mastercard’s® Zero Liability Policy against authorized use, as long as the policy criteria are met. If your card is lost or stolen, you’re covered by Mastercard’s® Zero Liability Policy, which applies to your purchases made in the store, over the telephone, online, or via a mobile device and ATM transactions.

Making purchases and checking statements with Mastercard® Debit Cards

Where can I make contactless payments?
Simply tap to pay anywhere you see the contactless symbol at checkout. This includes fast-food restaurants, gas stations, convenience stores, pharmacies, stadiums, and more.
If you don't see the contactless symbol, your contactless-enabled card can still be used by inserting your chip or swiping at checkout.

How do I pay with Mastercard contactless?
To make a purchase, simply tap your Mastercard contactless card, key fob, or smartphone on the payment reader when checking out at participating retail locations.

Can I use my contactless card or device on payment readers that don't display the contactless logo?
You can make contactless payments on any contactless payment reader that displays this symbol. You may also use contactless cards in magnetic stripe readers by swiping the card. However, you cannot use a contactless key fob or smartphone in a magnetic stripe reader.

How close does the "tap" have to be to the checkout reader?
Typically, when you tap your card/device at checkout, it must be within an inch or two of the contactless symbol on the terminal at the counter. Please note that if you have more than one contactless card in your wallet, you should remove the specific card you would like to use rather than tapping your wallet against the reader.

How will purchases appear on my monthly statement?
Purchases made with contactless will be displayed on your Mastercard statement just like any other purchase.

Where can I use my mastercard® debit card?
You can use a Mastercard® debit card at millions of places here at home, and around the world.

What options are available for payment using my Mastercard® Debit Card?
You can use Contactless Payment as an option if it is available on the terminal. If the terminal does not support Contactless Payment, you are still able to insert the chip or swipe the card as used traditionally.

Can I still swipe my card to pay?
Yes. If a merchant is not yet chip-activated, simply swipe your card. Keep in mind, you may need to input your PIN or sign for your purchase, as directed by the merchant.

I tried to use my card at a chip-activated terminal but it didn’t work. Why?
Some merchants may have installed chip terminals, but haven’t activated them yet. In these cases, simply swipe your card to pay.

Can I still access my account at the ATM?
Yes. You can use your debit card at the ATM just like always by swiping your card and using your PIN. If the ATM has a chip card reader, be sure to insert the chip end of your card into the ATM. Your card will remain in the ATM until your transaction is complete.

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