When did debit cards come out?

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When did debit cards come out?

We are using credit and debit cards instead of cash every day, but probably only 1% knows when did debit cards come out. Debit cards are much safer and easier way to pay for goods and services, but we started to widely use them only around 15-20 years ago. If we would tell you what year did debit cards come out really, then you would be shocked!

The very first debit card came out to the market back in 1966, according to a banking institution reports by CFTC USA.

Debit card first came out in the USA, then the same year it appeared in the UK and then in all other EU countries. Have a look at the very first debit card of prestigious Barclays bank:


Of course credit cards were the first to come to the banking sector, and debit cards already used the whole infrastructure which were setup for credit card payments. Technologies evolved, paying with debit card became more secure in the eyes of ordinary citizens, thus banks had to produce a long lasting, confidential, safe, reliable and widely acceptable debit card. Before 1970 debit cards were given only to business executives, and cards looked more like a cheque (made out of thick paper) with your signature on it. In 1972 new type of debit card appeared on the market – plastic debit card with information-encoding magnetic strip. Interesting to note, that all cards were with Visa or Mastercard watermarks on it, which highlighted the security of the card. In 1988 the very first multi-function debit card with chip was tested in Japan, and very quickly after that debit cards started to be popular all other the world, not only is the US and UK.

Nothing have changed since appearance of debit cards, considering how much technologies around us have evolved in past 50 years! We have same VISA logo printed on our plastic debit cards with magnetic strips and chips. Debit card is celebrating its anniversary this year (2016), but it is still very popular taking into account fast popularizing mobile payment methods like Apple Pay, Google Pay and other alternatives.

According to latest researches and reports more than half of the population of the World use debit cards to make their daily purchases. Each transaction costs the merchant about $0.44, but swipe fee is lowering every year and could lead to increase of a monthly fee for debit card users.

If you are a merchant and wish to accept debit card payments from your customers, then contact our managers, who will be happy to help you to setup the needed payment solution!

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