South Koreans increasingly prefer cashless payments, BOK survey shows

Tuesday 16 April 2019 10:03 CET | News

South Koreans are increasingly going cashless as more people rely on credit cards and digital payment tools, according to a survey by the Bank of Korea (BOK).

The survey further uncovers:

  • Korean households had an average KRW 78,000 (USD 68.60) in cash in their wallets at any given time in 2018, down 33% from 2016;

  • people in their 20s had an average KRW 54,000, KRW 67,000 for people in their 30s, KRW 91,000 for people in their 40s, and KRW 105,000 for people in their 50s;

  • cash accounted for only 20% of all payments in South Korea in 2018.

The BOK made efforts to phase out cash from the market to reduce the cost of producing new currency. The bank spent KRW 6.17 billion (USD 5.4 million) to replace damaged banknotes and coins in 2019.

Under the BOK-led “coinless society project”, consumers can deposit small change left from the purchase of goods into prepaid mobile cards that can be later used at convenience stores and department stores.

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Keywords: South Korea, cashless payments, Bank of Korea, credit card
Countries: World