Download App

Preparture is a free scheduling app that helps users plan their itinerary around town, out of town, out of the country, and even before that final departure.

s f


The Future of Contactless Travel in Australia and New Zealand

As Australia and New Zealand continue to evolve in the digital age, the future of contactless travel is becoming an increasingly important topic. With advancements in technology and a growing demand for seamless travel experiences, both countries are making significant strides in integrating contactless solutions across various sectors. From public transport to airports, and from tourism to everyday transactions, the adoption of contactless payments is set to revolutionize the way people move and interact.

Key Takeaways

  • Australia and New Zealand are leading the charge in contactless travel, driven by advancements in public transport and payment technologies.
  • Auckland is set to introduce contactless payment options for public transport, including Visa Paywave, by late 2024.
  • Airports in both countries are investing heavily in touchless technologies to enhance traveler safety and convenience.
  • The rise of digital wallets and mobile payment apps, such as Apple Pay and Google Pay, is transforming everyday transactions for consumers.
  • Tourism operators are embracing contactless solutions, making it easier for travelers to explore and boost local economies.

Revolutionizing Public Transport: Contactless Payments in Action

Auckland’s Leap into the Future

Auckland is taking a bold step forward with its public transport system. Our recent research showed that 95% of Aucklanders want faster, easier-to-use, and more-frequent public transport that goes to more places. To meet this demand, Auckland Transport is rolling out contactless payment options, including Visa Paywave, across the city’s buses, trains, and ferries in the coming months. A total of $23 million has been budgeted to design and implement this technology, marking the first stage of a comprehensive ticketing transformation. This will upgrade current systems, technology, training, testing, and customer service, making travel more seamless and efficient.

The National Ticketing Solution

New Zealand is not stopping at Auckland. The Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency launched its contactless fare payment system at the end of 2022, setting a national standard for public transport. This initiative aims to make inter-city travel more convenient, especially for foreign visitors who can now move around without struggling with language barriers. The adoption of NFC (Near Field Communication) and QR codes is revolutionizing public transportation systems, making travel more seamless and efficient.

Benefits for Daily Commuters

For daily commuters, the benefits of contactless payments are numerous:

  • Speed: No more fumbling for cash or coins.
  • Convenience: Just tap and go.
  • Efficiency: Reduced queues and faster boarding times.
  • Flexibility: Multiple payment options, including digital wallets and mobile payment apps.

The future of public transport in Australia and New Zealand is looking bright, with contactless payments leading the charge. This transformation is not just about technology; it’s about making daily commutes easier and more enjoyable for everyone.

Airports Leading the Charge in Contactless Travel

Airports are at the forefront of the contactless travel revolution, making every traveller touchpoint as touch-less as possible. With health and safety at the forefront, accelerating digital and adapting dining and travel experiences through contactless technology is an important measure to not only address anxiety around social distancing, but to alleviate it.

Touchless Check-ins and Security

Imagine passing through a biometric corridor on the way to airport security, where cameras verify your identity. This is not a scene from a sci-fi movie but a reality in some forward-thinking airports. Travelers are more willing to travel through airports that offer contactless services, making their journey smoother and more efficient.

Digital Boarding Passes

Gone are the days of fumbling with paper boarding passes. Digital boarding passes, accessible via smartphones, streamline the boarding process and reduce physical contact. This not only speeds up the process but also enhances the overall travel experience.

Contactless Duty-Free Shopping

In-app mobile ordering and more robust digital loyalty programs are elevating airport experiences for people looking to shop and dine while in transit. Contactless payment options in duty-free shops ensure a seamless and safe shopping experience.

Airports have doubled their investment in contactless technologies in 2021, as the industry bands together to make every traveller touchpoint as touch-less as possible.

The Rise of Digital Wallets and Mobile Payment Apps

Apple Pay and Google Pay Dominance

Consumers are already leaning toward more convenient and efficient alternative payment methods like digital wallets, QR codes, or Buy Now Pay Later. Merchants inevitably must accept these methods to meet demand or risk losing customers and their business. Mobile wallets are on the rise, as cash use is falling. Here’s what you need to know about accepting digital payments in Australia.

BNPL Services on the Go

The trend among consumers in this region is shifting towards digital payments. With a rising adoption rate, transactions are expected to reach USD 211 billion by 2027. Moreover, the pandemic also had a significant impact on consumer behavior, driving the adoption of non-cash transactions due to various factors.

Security and Convenience Combined

Consumers turned to e-commerce, mobile wallets, and contactless payments for convenience, health, and safety. As businesses digitized, there’s demand for digital payments and solutions. The rise of fintech, particularly PayTech, contributed to the region’s digital payment expansion.

People already expect digital services to be a part of the travel journey. Personalized services that connect across all touchpoints elevate these experiences and promote brand loyalty.

Tourism Operators Embrace Contactless Solutions

Tourist hotspots across Australia and New Zealand are transforming payments down under by embracing contactless solutions. From bustling markets to serene beaches, visitors can now enjoy the convenience of tap-to-pay options. This shift not only enhances the travel experience but also ensures safer transactions, reducing the need for physical cash handling.

Experiential travel is all about immersing oneself in the local culture and activities. With contactless payments, tourists can seamlessly book tours, activities, and even dining experiences without the hassle of carrying cash or dealing with currency exchange. This ease of payment significantly reshapes the payments landscape in ANZ, empowering a wide range of businesses to embrace contactless payments.

Contactless solutions are not just convenient for tourists; they also provide a significant boost to local economies. By adopting these technologies, local businesses can attract more customers, streamline their operations, and ultimately increase their revenue. This digital transformation is a win-win for both tourists and the local communities they visit.

The adoption of contactless technologies in the tourism sector is a game-changer, making travel more enjoyable and efficient for everyone involved.

The Future of Contactless Travel Beyond Public Transport

Hotels are rapidly adopting contactless solutions to enhance guest experiences. From touchless check-ins to digital room keys, the hospitality industry is making strides in providing seamless and safe stays. Guests can now use their smartphones to unlock their rooms, order room service, and even control in-room settings like lighting and temperature. This not only improves convenience but also addresses health and safety concerns.

The car rental and ride-sharing sectors are also embracing contactless technologies. Companies are introducing features like app-based car rentals, where you can book, unlock, and start your rental car using just your phone. Ride-sharing services are implementing contactless payment options and even touchless ride-hailing, where you can summon a ride without any physical interaction. These innovations are making travel more convenient and reducing the need for human contact.

Contactless technology is revolutionizing the dining and entertainment industries as well. Restaurants are offering QR code menus, contactless ordering, and payment options to enhance the dining experience. Movie theaters and entertainment venues are also adopting digital ticketing and touchless entry systems. These advancements not only streamline operations but also provide a safer environment for patrons.

The future of travel is undeniably contactless, with every sector from hospitality to transportation adopting new technologies to meet the demands of modern travelers. As we move forward, these innovations will continue to shape a more convenient and safer travel experience for everyone.

Challenges and Opportunities in Implementing Contactless Travel

Infrastructure Investments

Implementing contactless travel solutions requires significant infrastructure investments. From upgrading payment terminals to ensuring robust internet connectivity, the initial costs can be daunting. However, these investments are crucial for creating a seamless travel experience. While we wait for these solutions, it would be good to see some consequences to businesses found to be using contactless payments as an excuse to overcharge.

Consumer Adoption

Consumer adoption is another hurdle. Not everyone is tech-savvy, and some may be hesitant to switch from traditional payment methods. Educational campaigns and user-friendly interfaces can help bridge this gap. The key is to make the transition as smooth as possible for all age groups.

Future Innovations

The future holds endless possibilities for contactless travel. From biometric payments to AI-driven customer service, the sky’s the limit. The challenge lies in staying ahead of the curve and continuously innovating to meet consumer expectations. This is an opportunity to enhance digital experiences and make travel more convenient and enjoyable for everyone.

The travel industry is improving contactless experiences such as mobile check-in at hotels and mobile boarding passes at airlines to increase physical distancing and to keep travelers safe. In the process, hotels and airlines also aim to bring travelers digitally closer to their brands.

Inspirational Stories: How Contactless Travel is Changing Lives

Commuters’ Success Stories

Imagine hopping on a bus without fumbling for change or waiting in line to top up a card. For many daily commuters, this is now a reality. Contactless payments have revolutionized public transport, making it more efficient and user-friendly. In cities like Auckland, commuters are praising the ease and speed of their daily journeys. One commuter shared, "I used to dread the morning rush, but now, with just a tap, I’m on my way."

Tourists’ Seamless Experiences

Tourists visiting Australia and New Zealand are finding their travel experiences more enjoyable and less stressful. From touchless check-ins at hotels to contactless payments at tourist hotspots, the convenience is undeniable. A family visiting Hamilton Island noted, "We didn’t have to worry about carrying cash or cards. Everything was just a tap away." This shift has made travel not only safer but also more enjoyable.

Businesses Thriving with Contactless Payments

Local businesses are also reaping the benefits of this technological shift. Restaurants, shops, and even street vendors have embraced contactless payments, leading to increased sales and customer satisfaction. One shop owner mentioned, "Since we started accepting contactless payments, we’ve seen a significant boost in sales. Customers love the convenience." This move towards a cashless society is not without its challenges, but the benefits are clear.

The future is contactless. Travel and dining are so much more than just experiences. For many, it’s a way of life — outlets for people to break away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life — to relax, reset, expand horizons and create new memories.

Discover how contactless travel is transforming lives around the globe. From seamless itineraries to real-time updates, the future of travel is here. Ready to experience it for yourself? Visit our website to learn more and start planning your next adventure with Preparture today!


As Australia and New Zealand continue to embrace the future of contactless travel, the benefits are clear: faster, more convenient, and safer journeys for everyone. With initiatives like the Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency’s contactless fare payment system and Auckland Transport’s upcoming Visa Paywave integration, the region is setting a high standard for seamless travel experiences. The adoption of mobile POS terminals, BNPL services, and digital wallets further enhances the ease of travel, making it a breeze for both locals and tourists. So, whether you’re hopping on a bus in Sydney or catching a ferry in Auckland, rest assured that the future of travel is not just contactless—it’s downright exciting. Buckle up, because the journey ahead is going to be smooth, swift, and sensational!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the National Ticketing Solution (NTS) in New Zealand?

The National Ticketing Solution (NTS) is a comprehensive payment system being introduced in New Zealand to provide a range of easy-to-use payment methods for all public transport. It includes contactless payment devices and a prepaid transit card that can be used nationwide.

When will Auckland introduce contactless payment capabilities?

Auckland is scheduled to introduce contactless payment capabilities for standard adult fares by late 2024. By 2026, Auckland will integrate ticketing technology with the NTS national ticketing solution.

What are the benefits of contactless payments for daily commuters?

Contactless payments offer faster, easier, and more convenient transactions for daily commuters. They reduce the need for physical cash or tickets and streamline the boarding process, making travel more efficient.

How are airports in Australia and New Zealand adopting contactless technologies?

Airports in Australia and New Zealand are investing in contactless technologies, including touchless check-ins, digital boarding passes, and contactless duty-free shopping, to create safer and more efficient travel experiences.

What role do digital wallets and mobile payment apps play in contactless travel?

Digital wallets and mobile payment apps like Apple Pay and Google Pay are becoming increasingly popular, offering secure and convenient payment options for various travel-related expenses, including transport, accommodation, and dining.

What challenges are associated with implementing contactless travel solutions?

Implementing contactless travel solutions requires significant infrastructure investments, consumer adoption, and continuous innovation to address security concerns and improve user experience.

Post a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.