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CardFlight EMV Migration Tracker

Why are we publishing the EMV Migration Tracker?

While EMV chip card technology has been implemented in Europe for more than a decade, the rollout of EMV in the U.S is just beginning. The most visible milestone in this rollout came earlier this year with the October 1 liability shift. This is an early step in an ongoing process that the Payments Security Task Force predicts will lead to 98 percent of U.S. credit and debit cards containing EMV chips by the end of 2017.

Much has been written in the press about EMV chip cards, many U.S. cardholders have received cards with EMV chips on them, and many merchants have deployed EMV-ready payment terminals.  However, very little hard data has been published about the real world use of EMV chip card technology in the U.S. Most published statistics rely on surveys, individual anecdotes or forecasts rather than real transactional data.

As a leader in mobile payment acceptance who operates a PCI Level 1 compliant payment gateway, CardFlight has access to unique data and insights about the proliferation of EMV chip card technology in the United States. We’re publishing these statistics to help all participants in the payments industry better understand trends in EMV adoption.  Here’s what we discovered:


Over 50% of the cards being presented in the U.S. have EMV chips on them


The percent of cards with EMV chips grew by 5% from October to November


The percentage of cards used by U.S. consumers jumped by 5 percentage points from October to November. Anyone who thought banks were acting slow in distributing chip enabled cards is mistaken. Over half of the cards now being used have EMV chips, meaning a majority of consumers have what it takes to pay with EMV. While a large minority of consumers still use cards without EMV chips, trends show that the rate of EMV chip cards being used is growing approximately 1% per week.


83% of American Express Cards have EMV chips, while Discover lags at 40%

Merchants-that-contain-EMV-chips,-by-card-brand-webThe likelihood of a card to have an EMV chip on it varies considerably by card brand.  American Express leads the pack with issuing the most EMV chip cards, as data shows that 83% of the American Express cards presented at checkout were EMV chip cards. Visa comes second with 53% of cards presented being EMV chip cards. MasterCard and Discover trail behind, with 42% and 40% of cards containing EMV chips, respectively.


Hawaii, Florida and New York lead the way in EMV issuance

Merchants-that-contain-EMV-chips,-by-state-of-purchase-WebEMV card usage varies considerably across state lines. Hawaii, Florida and New York are the states leading the way in EMV card issuance. The usage of EMV cards was 63% in Hawaii, and 59% in Florida and New York. At the other end of the spectrum, just 11% cards used at the point-of-sale in Mississippi contain EMV chips, while Maine and South Dakota had 20% of their cards enabled with an EMV chip.


Some industry verticals see more than 70% of cards presented containing EMV chips


The merchant industry with the highest proliferation of EMV chip card usage by customers is Sporting Goods, with 73% of cards presented containing chips. Parking Lots, Meters and Garages follow close behind at 72% and Transportation Services; such as taxis, rail and public transportation services, see 65% of cards presented containing chips. The industry with the lowest rate of EMV card usage is Fast Food, at 26%, with 33% usage at Bakeries and Women’s clothing stores.


About our Methodology

Our analysis is based on real transactions processed through the CardFlight payment gateway since the October 1 liability shift. All data comes from sample of over 100,000 transactions at thousands of merchants in all 50 states from October 15, 2015 through December 4, 2015.

This data was collected across merchants with and without EMV-approved payment acceptance solutions, so it speaks to the cards being presented by cardholders and is not skewed by whether or not a merchant has upgraded to a true EMV solution.  However, the data shown here does enable merchant acquirers and merchants to better understand how exposed they are to the EMV liability.

Our analysis relies on data from actual cards in use, the so called “top of the wallet cards”, and not plastics that are issued and never used. By weighting percentages based on transactions run through our gateway, it is representative of the cards in use in the US rather than weighted by all cards issued, a sample that would overweight inactivated or dormant cards.


Who is CardFlight?

CardFlight is a leading provider of tools and technology to help merchants accept in-person credit card payments on iOS and Android devices. We offer developer tools and software developer kits that allow retailers and vertical solution providers to easily build their own custom POS software. Additionally, we offer SwipeSimple, a turnkey mobile application that helps merchant service providers, banks, and other financial institutions offer a mobile point-of-sale solution to their customers, without having to build their own technology from scratch.

Our technology platform also includes encrypted card readers and a PCI Level 1 compliant payment gateway that supports over 20 different processors, to provide clients with complete mobile payments and mobile POS (mPOS) solutions.

CardFlight is one of the first payments technology providers to bring EMV chip card acceptance to smartphones and tablets in the US market. The company received its first EMV approvals and certifications prior to the October 1 liability shift and is helping lead the way in the migration to EMV chip card technology in the United States.

For more information on CardFlight, visit