Record of two billion cashless payments made this year in Belgium

Record of two billion cashless payments made this year in Belgium
Credit: Belga / Thierry Roge

Two billion payments have been made with Bancontact or Payconiq this year, reported the payment specialist Bancontact Payconiq Company. November saw the first time that the two billion mark had been reached in a single year.

In 2010, the mark of one billion payments was exceeded, just over a decade later that figure has doubled.

This illustrates the fact that an ever-increasing number of Belgians are making the switch from cash to mobile and card payments. It also shows that payment solutions offered by a local player can be very successful in the Belgian market.

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According to Bancontact Payconiq, 75,3% of Belgians have a local banking app and/or the Payconiq by Bancontact app on their smartphone. When it comes to foreign payment providers, the percentage of Belgian users is between 5 and 9%.

The payment specialist said on their website that the fact that since July 1st of this year every merchant in Belgium is obligated by law to offer some form of electronic payment will only see figures of cashless payments rising in the future.

A survey conducted by the company revealed that within only a few years, people have become increasingly less likely to pay with cash. The pandemic only pushed this trend with 63% of respondents now paying less often with cash. A quarter of respondents believed that cash will almost disappear in 10 years while 40% think it will still be around, they just won't use it anymore.

Not all embrace change

However, a large number of businesses still have not made the option of paying electronically available to customers, despite the legal obligation to do so.

Businesses which refuse digital payments risk a fine of up to €80,000 or up to 4% of the total turnover if it is higher than €80,000. Customers who are confronted with vendors who deny the option are advised to make the seller aware of the new rules and should the seller still refuse, customers can file a complaint via the FPS Economy.

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