Visa Tests New System for Paying Ethereum Gas Fees via Credit Card

Payments giant Visa is testing out a new system that would allow for the payment of Ethereum (ETH) gas fees with a credit or debit card.

In a new post on Visa’s website, the firm’s researchers say that one of the biggest problems with utilizing the Ethereum network for payments is the need to settle network fees every time a transaction is executed.

Paying gas fees means that users always need to have a little bit of ETH on hand to conduct transactions, which Visa says is a barrier to adoption and user experience.

“Recognizing this challenge, we explored an option of how to allow users to pay their on-chain gas fees directly in fiat money through card payments, thereby simplifying blockchain transactions. Under this scenario, users may no longer need to hold native tokens specific to a blockchain solely for the purpose of paying gas fees.

Such a potential solution would leverage Ethereum’s ERC-4337 standard and a paymaster contract, enabling users to use a Visa card to directly pay for gas fees.”

Visa says that Ethereum’s ERC-4337 standard, also known as Account Abstraction, could be the gateway to payments solutions on the network. The firm says it has launched a hackathon to explore the concept further.

“Building on our previous work described in ‘Rethink Digital Transactions with Account Abstraction,’ our Crypto Protocol, Visa Innovation Center, and Visa Research teams have conducted an internal hackathon, where we took the opportunity to explore paymasters under ERC-4337. The result of this collaborative effort is a proposed solution flow that demonstrates how to enable users to pay their on-chain gas fees in fiat money through a card on file.

This proposed solution utilizes Ethereum’s ERC-4337 standard and a paymaster contract, allowing Visa cardholders to directly cover their gas fees. We believe that this innovative and adaptable approach can help streamline the onboarding process for new crypto users and improve the experience for current users.”

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