Nearly half of Thai consumers aim to avoid using cash after pandemic ends – Visa study

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Visa, the world’s leader in digital payments, today released further findings from its Visa Consumer Payment Attitudes study which show nearly half of all Thai consumers (45 per cent) are likely to avoid using cash after the COVID-19 pandemic ends.

The Study also delves into which activities Thai consumers are looking forward to spending on when recovery is underway.  The top three activities are traveling within Thailand (35 per cent), travelling abroad to COVID-safe destinations (29 per cent) and taking small get-away trips in their own city (19 per cent).

Suripong Tantiyanon, Country Manager, Visa Thailand, said: “The pandemic has had a massive impact on how people live, work and shop both in Thailand and globally.  As we have crossed the one-year mark since the pandemic hit, we are taking a look at how events in the past are shaping our future.  We are privileged to be able to conduct this Study and share findings that we believe will help everyone prepare for back-to-business scenarios.”

According to the Study, other behaviours that are likely to become a new normal post-COVID are wearing a mask (62 per cent) and avoiding crowds (43 per cent).

The situation also prompted many Thai consumers to explore different shopping channels.  The most popular channels used for the first time during COVID are shopping on apps and websites (65 per cent), using direct delivery at home after ordering by phone from local shops (47 per cent), and shopping on social media channels (44 per cent).

Thai consumers were forced to rethink spending priorities. According to the respondents, spending categories that experienced the largest reduction are international trips (63 per cent), going to cinemas or events (60 per cent), buying luxury items like bags, watches and jewelry (60 per cent), fine-dining (58 per cent), well-being treatment (57 per cent) and buying new clothes (54 per cent).

Looking ahead, in addition to domestic, international and small get-away trips, Thai consumers are preparing to resume spending on gadgets (16 per cent), groceries and personal care items (15 per cent), and going out to enjoy fine-dining and out of home entertainment (10 per cent). Less than one in ten plans to upgrade home appliances (9 per cent) and spend on fashion and clothing (8 per cent).

“We strongly believe some of the behaviour shifts will become permanent rather than a temporary swing.  This includes a preference for using touchless payments, such as contactless cards or smartphones, which offer better experience and are safer for both buyers and sellers.  While we are hoping for a speedy return to normality, Visa is working with our stakeholders across the payments industry and beyond to prepare for a future that has arrived sooner than we expected,” Suripong concluded.