The Maestro bank debit card is probably in its final hours. Used throughout Switzerland by a large part of the population, its popularity has been declining steadily and may well be replaced by MasterCard's Debit solution. But how did we get here?
When the Covid-19 crisis erupted at the beginning of the year, consumption patterns were profoundly changed by new habits. Faced with the need to confine themselves in many countries, online shopping exploded, while contactless payments became the rule in many stores.
For instance, several banks have announced that they want to replace the good old Maestro card with other solutions. At Credit Suisse, Valiant and the St. Gallen Cantonal Bank (SGKB), the MasterCard Debit, which combines the functionality of debit and credit cards into a single card, will succeed the Maestro. UBS is relying on the Global Card, which offers all the advantages of a standard credit card, but on a debit basis.
It must be said that there are many arguments in favour of a replacement. For example, the Maestro does not allow you to shop online or within popular applications such as the SBB app, TPGs or TLs. The Maestro also does not support the use of Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay payment solutions. Finally, one of the biggest constraints is the limited use of the Maestro worldwide. Indeed, bank debit cards are rarely recognised abroad, and when this is the case, very high user fees are to be expected.