Berne/Zurich, 23 June 2021
card payments. It is, however, not possible to make a statement on the relative impact of the coronavirus pandemic on changes in payment method use based on the survey data.
As before, the population does not feel particularly restricted in its choice of payment method. Overall, it rates the availability and acceptance of both cash and non-cashpayment instruments as good. The perceived acceptance of non-cashpayment methods has increased further since 2017. As for cash, information provided by respondents indicates certain restrictions on its acceptance. Such constraints on cash acceptance are likely a reflection of the fact that shops are frequently recommending cashless payment as a result of the pandemic.
In specific terms, the 2020 survey on payment methods yields the following results:
Cash and debit cards continue to be the two most widely owned payment instruments among Switzerland's population. In total, 97% of respondents keep cash in their wallets or at home to cover day-to-dayexpenses, while 92% own a debit card (2017: 88%) and 78% hold a credit card (2017: 63%).
In terms of the number of non-recurring payments made, cash continues to be the payment instrument most frequently used by the population, although its usage share has dropped significantly compared with 2017. While 70% of these payments were still being settled in cash in 2017, in 2020, this share was 43%. The corresponding shares for debit and credit card payments, meanwhile, have climbed to 33% (2017: 22%) and 13% (2017: 5%) respectively. As before, there is an above-averagenumber of cash-orientedconsumers in Italian-speakingSwitzerland, in the 55-and-overage group and in households with low to medium income levels.
In terms of the transaction value of non-recurring payments, the debit card has replaced cash as the payment instrument with the highest share. The value share for debit card payments currently amounts to 33% (2017: 29%), that of cash stands at 24% (2017: 45%). This development is largely due to the fact that cash is now only the most widely used payment method for small amounts (of less than CHF 20), whereas in 2017, it was still predominantly used for payments of up to CHF 50.
Contactless card payments are widespread in Switzerland. A total of 92% of all respondents hold a debit or credit card with the contactless payment function, with 60% of debit and credit cardholders stating that they always or usually pay using the touch-freefunction.
Mobile payment apps are registering robust growth. Having played only a marginal role in
2017 (11%), mobile payment apps have recorded a sharp rise in ownership since then (2020: 48%). At the same time, their usage in terms of volume and value has increased from virtually zero to 5% and 4% respectively.
By far the most widely used method for settling recurring payments in Switzerland is via online banking transfers. In terms of transaction value, 62% of all payments are settled via online banking. Payments made using direct debit and eBill follow with shares of 17% and