New debit cards in Luxembourg
(CS) By the end of the year the new debit card system by Visa Europe, V Pay, will replace the 600,000 debit cards held by Luxembourg residents.
While some banks have already started issuing the new cards, the distribution of V Pay cards will kick off properly on November 1, with all cards set to be replaced by December 31. Customers will not have to take any action, and the process will be taken care of by 11 Luxembourg banks taking part in the change.
The initiative comes as the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) introduced new guidelines for all national payment methods to be useable across Europe. V Pay will be accepted by over 8 million merchant locations across Europe and more than 360,000 ATMs.
Nevertheless, the cards will not be exclusive in Luxembourg and banks will be able to run other debit systems at the same time. While the Bancomat cards will disappear by the end of the year, the Bancomat grouping will continue to be responsible for cash machines across the country, that will continue to operate under the Bancomat brand.
The new V Pay system is presented as a safer card as it operates on a chip and PIN system rather than the magnetic stripe which is liable to forgery and counterfeiting. Nicolas Ancot, Visa Europe’s Vice-President in charge of V PAY Marketing, said in a statement that “although the magnetic stripe is still visible on the card, the information on the magnetic stripe no longer includes the card number, which protects the cardholder from skimming fraud.”
14 million cards have already been issued in Germany, Italy, France, Bulgaria and the Netherlands and banks across Europe have committed to issuing a total 65 million cards.