US Bank has unveiled plans to pilot test a contactless credit card scheme in Denver, Colorado that will enable a group of the bank's customers to pay for purchases with their US Bank Visa Debit Cards by holding the card close to a secure reader.

The new contactless technology makes it easy for consumers to use their credit cards to quickly pay for simple purchases – such as fast food, movie tickets, or convenience items – and carry less cash.

More than 600 merchant locations in the Denver area are ready to accept payments with contactless cards. Merchants like contactless cards because it speeds up the transaction and allows their employees to focus more on customer service. Visa estimates that the average transaction is 25% faster than using cash.

US Bank, through its partnership with Visa, has long been at the forefront of innovation in the area of cards and payments. This latest innovation and introduction of contactless is a reflection of our consumer and merchant customers’ desire to pay and go quickly and securely, said Patrick Coll, executive vice president of retail payments at US Bank. We anticipate enthusiastic acceptance in Denver and look forward to expanding the program.

Cards must be held within two inches of the reader to be accepted and data is protected with encryption technology that reduces the risk of fraud. Contactless cards will carry the same zero liability protection and will have the same behind-the-scenes fraud monitoring that is standard with Visa credit cards.

Customers in the pilot will receive their new contactless credit cards before the end of November. US Bank expects to make the feature available to more of its credit card customers in the near future.