As Visa prepares to enter market, survey shows Canadians want more debit card choice

Source: Visa

Debit cards are the most frequently used payment cards in Canada and Visa Debit cards will offer cardholders core features not currently available in the Canadian marketplace.

Visa Debit cardholders will be able to use their Visa debit cards to shop in Canada, at retail locations worldwide, buy goods widely online, over the phone or by mail.

"Canadians want more payment options and Visa Debit will give them control over how they pay - whether it's in store, online, over the phone or overseas," said Tim Wilson, Head of Visa Canada. "Visa products and services continue to bring innovation to the electronic payments industry; making payments faster, more convenient and secure for consumers and merchants in Canada."

Survey results from Visa confirm that Canadian consumers welcome more choice in the country's debit marketplace. The survey, commissioned by Visa Canada between June 26 and July 5, 2009, found that three out of four (74 per cent) respondents said they would be interested in a debit card that offers enhanced features and two out of three (66 per cent) believe that consumers should have more choice when it comes to direct debit payments in Canada.

Visa's multiple layers of security will help protect Visa Debit cardholders from payment card fraud in much the same way that they help protect Visa credit cardholders today. Visa Debit offers fraud prevention features that help prevent, detect, and resolve unauthorized use of Visa card information. And, if fraud should occur, cardholders are not liable for unauthorized charges.(1)

"The launch of Visa Debit will increase competition in the Canadian direct payment marketplace. Visa Debit will lay the ground work for further payment innovations and will offer merchants and consumers another choice in how they pay and are paid," continued Wilson. "Visa is enhancing convenience through innovation in Canada by offering a new payment choice with unique benefits, already available in other regions of the world."

Retailers that choose to accept Visa Debit cards will be able to offer customers choice at the point-of-sale and may benefit from increased online, mail or telephone transactions as Visa Debit will offer businesses the opportunity to access an underserved customer base that prefers to use debit, as well as customer segments that may not have access to Visa credit, like young Canadians. Some consumers surveyed in 2008 who had never shopped online indicated they would do so using Visa Debit.(2)

Visa enjoys unsurpassed acceptance around the world and Visa Debit cards are issued by financial institutions across the globe. Over the past 20 years, Visa has rapidly evolved beyond its credit roots to offer a broader range of payment products and transaction processing. Today, the majority of global transactions on Visa's network are on debit products. For more information on Visa Debit, visit

About the Survey

Conducted by Pollara on behalf of Visa Canada, this survey was fielded from June 26th to July 5th, 2009. The survey was completed by 3,227 individuals across Canada and the results are considered accurate to +/-1.73%, nineteen times out of twenty

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