The year 2021 opens with two novelties for ATM and credit cards, both aimed at stimulating electronic payments.
From January 1, 2021, two big novelties for electronic payments arrive, both aimed at stimulating the farewell to cash and at favoring the tracking of transactions between private individuals and retailers, in order to cut down on tax evasion. Technology, in fact, can prove to be a very useful tool for the tax authorities.
The two novelties are the launch of the ordinary State Cashback program, the six-monthly one, and the doubling of the maximum threshold for "contactless" payments, i.e. those made with a credit or debit card by touching the POS and without having to enter the PIN to authorize the transaction. On the one hand, citizens are encouraged to pay by card and not by contact, and on the other, life is made easier by allowing them to make larger purchases without having to enter the verification code.
State Cashback: the rules from January 1
From January 1, 2021, after the difficult experiment of Christmas Cashback, the first six-month reference period of ordinary State Cashback begins. Citizens have six months to total at least 50 valid transactions and get 10% refund on the amounts spent in those transactions for a maximum of 150 euros per semester.
It starts with cards only and very few apps, such as Satispay, but the government promises that it won't be long before you can also pay with smartphones via NFC and apps such as Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay.
As well as the ordinary Cahsback comes also the Super Cashback: a prize of 1,500 euros for the first 100,000 who will have totaled more valid transactions in the semester.
Credit cards and ATMs: the new contactless threshold
At the same time, starting from January 1, 2021, doubles the threshold for contactless payments. Now you can pay up to 50 euros without having to enter the PIN, against the previous threshold of 25 euros.
The doubling affects, among others, all holders of Bancomat, Visa, Mastercard and BancoPosta cards and the new threshold is valid, almost always, even for purchases made abroad.