Thais can go without cash for up to eight days as digital payments usage increases – Visa study

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Visa, the world’s leader in digital payments, has today released findings from its latest Visa Consumer Payment Attitudes study[1] that show more than four in five Thais (82 per cent) have tried going cashless, on average succeeding at living for more than a week (8 days) without using cash.

The pandemic has also prompted non-users to choose contactless payments over cash.  Mobile contactless was the most used among first-timers at 26 per cent, followed by contactless card (23 per cent) and QR Code (21 per cent).

Suripong Tantiyanon, Country Manager, Visa Thailand, said: “Over recent years there has been a steady rise towards an increase in people using digital payments, and the events of the past year have only accelerated the progress. This is evident throughout the world and here in Thailand.  We believe these consumer preferences are not temporary and are here to stay.”

According to the study, the top three benefits of a cashless society are that it helps in restricting spread of infection (61 per cent), means no more queues at banks (60 per cent) and enables people to track financial records easily (59 per cent).

When it comes to awareness, Thai consumers are most familiar with QR Code payments (94 percent), followed by mobile contactless payments (92 per cent) and contactless card (89 per cent). In terms of usage, mobile contactless payment is the most used among all types of contactless payments at 45 per cent, followed by QR Code (42 per cent) and contactless card (41 per cent).

Thai consumers believe the pandemic has accelerated the time it will take for the country to become a cashless society with payment innovation playing an increasingly important part in people’s daily lives. In the current circumstances, they believe a cashless society could be a possibility by 2026, whereas before the pandemic respondents thought this wouldn’t be possible until 2030.

“This year will be a year of recovery despite the persistence of uncertainty.  It is essential for businesses to ensure they are prepared to meet changing consumer demands as they become more familiar with alternative payment methods. We are committed to innovate and collaborate with every stakeholder in the ever-expanding ecosystem to help Thailand stay on the path of recovery and thrive in the future,” Suripong concluded.