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Media Release

Shoppers ‘Blitz-en’ Christmas this year with cashless payments

Shoppers ‘Blitz-en’ Christmas this year with cashless payments

Almost three quarters of Australian shoppers believe stores should offer cashless payment methods

Less than two weeks out from Christmas, more than one third (36 per cent) of Australian shoppers say they will avoid a shop that does not offer cashless1 payment options, according to new research released by CommBank today.

The research, which examined shopper sentiment towards cash-only versus cashless payment options this festive season, found 74 per cent of shoppers believe all stores should offer cashless payment options. Almost two thirds (63 per cent) say one of the greatest benefits of making a cashless payment is the convenience of not having to carry cash.

Contactless payment methods are increasingly popular, with 69 per cent of shoppers currently using methods such as Tap & Pay.

Angus Sullivan, Executive General Manager, Retail Products and Strategy, Commonwealth Bank, said a number of mobile innovations have been introduced this year to help shoppers manage their Christmas spending.

“From tracking their spending on-the-go, to using contactless payments such as Tap & Pay on the CommBank app, Australians can blitz their shopping with minimal fuss so they have more time with their loved ones this festive season.

“Shoppers are embracing the convenience and simplicity of paying without having to rummage for physical notes and coins – with more than 2.89 million users of the CommBank app each week, we expect more Australians to shop with their digital wallet this Christmas than ever before,” he said.

Cashless payment tops the Christmas wish list

The majority of shoppers (56 per cent) will spend up to five hours hunting for presents this year, and almost one-in-five (19 per cent) will spend more than 10 hours. Most shoppers will purchase up to ten gifts (64 per cent) and spend up to $1,000 (81 per cent). When it comes to paying for their presents:

  • Almost two thirds (65 per cent) prefer cashless methods to cash transactions, with those aged 18-34 most likely to prefer cashless methods.
  • 58 per cent will make more cashless payments this Christmas compared to last.
  • One-in-four will use cashless methods for up to 100 per cent of their Christmas purchases.

The reasons behind shopper preference for cashless transactions are varied. According to the research:

  • More than half (59 per cent) say cashless payment options help take the stress out of Christmas shopping.
  • 72 per cent say they allow for a faster, more convenient shopping experience.
  • Close to three quarters (73 per cent) get irritated when they don’t have enough cash to pay at a cash-only store.
  • 55 per cent get annoyed if they have to borrow cash from friends or family to pay at a cash-only store.
  • Close to two thirds (62 per cent) are more comfortable using cashless payment methods and not having to carry cash.

Cash-only stores seen as ‘behind the times’

Retailers not offering cashless payment options may experience slower sales this Christmas. The research showed:

  • 52 per cent probably won’t return to a store if they have to leave it to get cash out.
  • Nearly two thirds (62 per cent) say cash-only businesses will lose sales to competitors offering cashless methods.
  • The same number say cash-only businesses are behind the times and need to catch up.
  • Close to half (46 per cent) associate cash-only stores with being more ‘low end’.
  • 41 per cent are suspicious of cash-only stores, with the same number saying they are less likely to recommend a cash-only business.

Digital payments help shoppers budget better

Shoppers will seek the help of new banking technology this Christmas. The research revealed:

  • 63 per cent will use online banking or mobile banking apps to help track and manage their spending.
  • More than three quarters (76 per cent) say cashless methods allow them to track their purchases via online banking.
  • More than half (52 per cent) would prefer to use cashless methods this Christmas so they do not have to keep receipts as proof of purchase.

Shoppers embracing the digital wallet

Close to one-in-five (18 per cent) survey respondents will do all of their Christmas shopping via mobile phone and say they do not require a physical wallet. The research also showed:

  • Nearly one quarter (24 per cent) would prefer to pay using their mobile phone so they don’t have to carry a physical wallet.
  • Of the 69 per cent of shoppers who say they currently make transactions using contactless methods, 18 per cent use their smartphone.
  • Shoppers aged 18-34 are the most likely to use smartphones for their contactless transactions.

1 Cashless: Shopping transactions that do not involve the exchange of physical money (e.g. EFTPOS, debit card and credit card transactions and contactless options such as Tap & Pay, PayPass)