The Kroger supermarket chain began testing the use of contactless payment technology at 61 QFC stores, allowing customers to use their mobile devices to do their shopping while maintaining the Covid-19’s distancing protocols.
The contactless payment pilot program began across the QFC division, located in Seattle, Washington, allowing customers to use their mobile devices to speed up the checkout process, according to a Kroger news release.
The pilot includes the acceptance of Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, Fitbit Pay, mobile banking apps, and contactless chip cards, underpinned by Near-Field Communication (NFC) technology.
“QFC is excited to pilot contactless payments powered by NFC technology, providing our customers with an additional way to pay for their fresh food and household essentials,” said Chris Albi, president of QFC. “The contactless payment solution will help make life easier for many of our customers and provide the freedom of choice among various options, including cash, debit, credit, and check.”
According to Kroger, NFC technology uses a radio frequency field to transmit data between two devices, a mobile device and a PIN pad, eliminating physical contact.
Customers can place their mobile device or contactless chip card near the PIN pad and payment data is transmitted from the device or card to the terminal to process the transaction.
The QFC contactless payment pilot supports the more than 30 policy and process changes Kroger has implemented since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic to promote social distancing and safeguard associates, customers, and communities, the company said in the statement.
Other contactless payment solutions offered by Kroger include:
- Kroger Pay: a touchless mobile payment solution that securely combines a customer’s payment and loyalty card information to create a faster checkout experience. Customers are provided a single-use QR code to scan at the terminal to quickly communicate their payment and loyalty card information.
- Scan, Bag, Go: the improved Scan, Bag, Go technology allows customers to scan their groceries using their mobile device, bag their own products, and pay via the Kroger app.
- Pickup and Delivery: customers can place a grocery order via Kroger.com or the Kroger mobile app for delivery or free pickup. Kroger now also accepts SNAP/EBT benefits for its grocery pickup service.
“Kroger continues to invest in innovative technologies that advance the customer experience, including our payment systems,” said Kathy Hanna, Kroger’s senior director of payments. “Providing our customers with flexibility – whether that means having the option to choose between shopping in-store or online for groceries or how you pay for them – we are committed to personalizing their shopping trip.”