Given that the USA is supposed to completely switch over by October of 2015, it's surprising to me that no major US credit card company has issued a Chip + PIN card until now. When the big commercial travel bloggers got wind of it, they knew EXACTLY what the "acid test" was: French ticket machine trauma :) Once I heard it had passed the test I got myself a Barclays Arrival card and can personally add to the list of battle-tested locations:
- London Oyster card machine (pin)
- London Emirates Sky tram ticket machine (pin)
- Transport for London staffed window (sig)
- Spanish Renfe long distance train ticket machine (pin)
- onboard cafe on Spanish AVE train (sig)
- Madrid metro ticket machine (pin)
It seems that the card only runs in Chip + PIN mode when there is no Chip + Signature option available. Basically everywhere I went that was staffed, I was offered a piece of paper to sign.
While I've not seen any visible signs of the big transition to EMV Chip cards in the US next October, I did see this article today, saying that Square is now coming out with a chip-enabled reader. Square is popular with small, hip businesses but they recently added Starbucks as a major customer, so this transition may happen after all.