Survey- Lesser Indians now prefer cash for high-value purchases

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Divya Kandwal
August 2, 2019
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Numr recently conducted a survey¹ about cash usage in  the top 8 cities of India.

Indian economy is massively cash-driven. A PayPal report titled “Digital Payments: Thinking beyond Transactions” inferred that 57% of Indians prefer using cash over other methods. Despite demonitisation and various initiatives to decrease dependence on and usage of cash, cash is still king in India for small purchases.

However, as evidenced by our survey,  the scenario is vastly different in Tier 1 cities.

For what amount do you typically avoid cash transactions?

What do you use in place of cash?

Although the E-wallet market has been growing steadily over the last few years, the Numr survey depicts that Indians continue to prefer traditional payment methods like Debit and Credit Cards.

According to a report by the Reserve Bank of India, India added around 150.45 million Debit cards and 9.89 million Credit cards between 2017 and 2018.

Out of the aforementioned banks-

  • ICICI registered the highest number of users who prefer Credit Cards, at 49%.
  • 44% of HDFC users reported that they preferred Credit Cards while the number was 43% for Axis bank.
  • Canara Bank (28%) and Bank of Baroda (32%) registered the lowest number of respondents who primarily used Credit card and consequently, the highest number of Debit Card users. (59% and 50% respectively).
  • The number of respondents who used third party wallets was the highest for Kotak Mahindra (26%) users, followed by people with State Bank of India (21%) as their primary bank.

What is the reason for choosing your preferred payment method?

According to the PayPal report, India, along with Philippines and Indonesia is the most cash dependent country in Asia. Indian economy is pre-dominantly cash-driven.

Even though it is restricted only to urban India at present, structural changes and digital campaigns are slowing encouraging citizens to move away from cash and paving way for alternate Payment methods.

¹Online Panel. SEC A1.

A total of 500 respondents across various demographics were surveyed. These respondents all belonged to the top 8 cities, namely Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Pune, Hyderabad and Chennai and were at least 22 years of age, at the time of answering the survey. These respondents were affluent, tech savvy urbanites who routinely use OTT platforms, are extremely health conscious and keenly aware of changing market trends.

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