Charging stations

Mastercard promotes consumer-friendly payment systems

03. November 2020, 09:22 Uhr   |  Irina Hübner

Mastercard promotes consumer-friendly payment systems

With its new Sustainable Mobility Program, Mastercard wants to promote sustainable, secure and user-friendly mobility and create consumer-friendly payment systems at e-charging stations. The program starts in Germany and is to be rolled out throughout Europe.

Within the framework of the Sustainable Mobility Program, Mastercard, as a technology company active in payment transactions, provides its partners in the field of e-mobility with financial support until the end of 2022 for the establishment of a uniform and open payment infrastructure at public e-charging points.

In the field of e-mobility, the charging infrastructure in particular represents a major hurdle for consumers due to incomprehensible tariff systems and different payment methods at public charging points. According to the EV-Driver study by NewMotion, the average driver uses up to six different charging apps, five charging cards and other electronic means of payment such as debit or credit cards. And ADAC reports that many drivers of electric cars are annoyed that they have to conclude a contract with charging cards instead of being able to pay with a debit or credit card, as they do everywhere else. The comparison portal Verivox also comes to the conclusion that recharging the electric car on the road requires much more advance planning and commitment on the part of customers than for a car with a combustion engine.

The removal of such access barriers is important for strengthening e-mobility. This is where Mastercard's Sustainable Mobility Program comes in and promotes the establishment of uniform payment systems at charging stations. After all, modern open systems benefit all parties: the consumers, who can then simply charge electricity and pay securely at any time - even when travelling - and the operators and manufacturers of e-charging points, for whom a user-friendly solution is essential if electromobility is to become established in the general population.

Contactless payment by card or app

Mastercard relies on open payment systems for its charging stations and intends to implement these together with partners. Open payment systems are operator-independent systems and offer an infrastructure that users already have. These include, for example, a contactless card or a mobile payment app in a smartphone or the Smartwatch, in which customers also deposit their debit or credit card.

In addition to users in Germany, these inclusive solutions also benefit travelers from abroad, since they usually also have international payment cards such as a Mastercard. Thanks to the Near Field Communication (NFC) technology used, users would then be able to pay contactlessly at any charging station with their debit or credit card or with their NFC-enabled mobile device. For amounts under 50 euros, this is usually possible without entering a PIN.

Both consumers and charging station operators benefit from up-to-date security systems. Those who pay by cell phone are additionally protected by a special encryption technology from Mastercard. Unique number combinations, the so-called tokens, are stored on the device. When paying via NFC technology, only these tokens are transmitted in encrypted form - never the user's confidential card or account information.

The Sustainable Mobility Program is aimed at operators and providers of charging stations, acquirers, payment service providers, fintechs, cities and municipalities, as well as third-party providers in the field of e-mobility.

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