The pandemic has boosted the cashless economy, Czechs are increasingly paying by card

This trend was also confirmed by representatives of Czech banks. “In total, the volume of Komerní bank card transactions increased by about 10 percent between 2019 and 2021 between March and July,” said Pavel Zúbek, spokesman for banka Komerní, when asked by Novinek.

In addition, the way Czechs use payment cards has also changed. “The volume of payments on the Internet almost doubled in 2021 compared to the previous year 2019 (89 percent growth). On the other hand, the volume of cash withdrawals from ATMs of Komerní bank cardholders decreased by seven percent over the same period. The volume of payments at the stone shop increased by 16 percent,” Zúbek specs.

There is growing interest in Google Pay services

SOB recorded a significant increase in e-commerce. However, the volume of e-commerce transactions has increased over the past year (online shopping – red note.) realized by cards issued by our bank more than 50 percent, in two years more than 110 percent. Today, therefore, we have more than doubled our volume in 2019,” said Michaela Lhotková, member of the SOB Board of Directors.

At Air bank, card payments in the Czech Republic (not only on the Internet) increased by 15 percent year-on-year in terms of number of transactions and by 25 percent in terms of amount of funds used in the period from the second quarter of last year to the first quarter of 2021 .

“There is a bigger difference in digital card payments compared to this year and the first half of last year. For example, the number and volume of transactions through Apple Pay increased by almost 60 percent, in the case of Google Pay by about 30 percent, in the case of Garmin Pay by 70 percent and in the case of Fitbit Pay by more than 80 percent. percent,” added Air bank spokesman Roman Macháček.

The head of communications at UniCredit Bank, Petr Plocek, later noticed that the new card was mostly used by people over the age of 55. “According to last year’s survey, 10% of Czechs started using digital channels during the pandemic, or even more than during the pre-pandemic period,” he added.

The trend continues even after the close

The trend continues even after the close ends. “We see the overall increase in card payments as a long-term trend, with clients paying by card more often than cash,” says Macháček.

A similar development was noted by eská spořitelna. “The volume of card transactions in May and June this year, which we recorded in payment terminals and when shopping on the Internet, surpassed last Christmas and reached about 26.7 billion crowns in the past two months. Thus, the volume of these payments increased by almost a fifth (24, 8 percent) year-on-year in June,” Jan Hailich, head of payment solutions at eská spořitelna, told Novinka.

“Year-on-year, the volume of all card transactions in June increased by almost a fifth (17.7 percent). The volume of card payments on the Internet increased the most from year to year (46 percent growth). The volume of card transactions taking place at payment terminals increased by a fifth (20.8 percent) and the volume of cash withdrawals from ATM networks increased by 10 percent,” added Hailich.

According to him, growth is mainly seen in payment terminals in the tourism, transportation, hobby and accommodation markets. “We are following similar developments in payments in e-commerce, which are dominated by travel agencies, fuel, accommodation, clothing and transportation,” he concluded.

UniCredit also confirmed the continuation of the trend. “Our latest survey confirms this trend and shows that more than 60 percent of Czechs and Slovaks actively use their mobile phones not only to manage their finances. Apple Pay and Google Pay payment methods are also linked to online payments. In terms of total electronic transactions, we at UniCredit Bank recorded a double-digit percentage increase year on year,” he explained.

Greater demands on banks and clients

Bank representatives agree that trends in electronic payments and commerce are placing greater demands on them. “This is primarily a technological demand for higher capacity for payment processing – at peak times there is a significant burden on the payment processing system, which we have to strengthen,” he explained on behalf of SOB Lhotková.

“For example, we have noticed greater interest in complaints about tickets, tours and undelivered goods impacted by the pandemic,” Macháček of Air Bank recalls another aspect of this trend.

“And than banks, this trend places greater demands on clients and their caution due to more frequent attempts at card abuse, especially in the recent form of vishing. (fake phone calls robbing people’s card details – ed. note.), against which we warn clients,” he added.

According to Zúbek from Komerční banka, the increase in card transactions and e-commerce demands the reliability of the systems that ensure these transactions. “Furthermore, it is necessary to increase client satisfaction with card transactions on the Internet in the long term, which should maintain the required level of security, but at the same time be simple for clients,” concluded Zúbek.


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