Cards near 40% of spending

Thu, 1 Jun 2023 7:05 GMT
Transactions in plastic money soared to €1.8 billion last year compared to 1 billion in 2019.
Cards near 40% of spending

The value of transactions made with plastic money in Greece last year came to 54 billion euros, an amount representing 38.5% of total consumer spending, which reached €130 billion in the same period.

As Cardlink CEO Antigonos Papadopoulos noted in his presentation at the Digital Banking Forum organized by Ethos Events, the evolution of card payments confirms that the growth of digital transactions is no longer driven by extraordinary circumstances like the pandemic, but has become part of everyday consumer behavior.

Of the total of €54 billion, some €44.7 billion concerned cards issued by Greek banks, while consumer spending with cards issued by foreign banks and made in this country by foreign nationals, mainly tourists, came to €9.3 billion. In terms of volume, transactions have increased from 1 billion in 2019 to 1.8 billion in 2022.

This trend this year, according to data from Cardlink on debit and credit card use, continued to grow at a rate of 15% in the first quarter of 2023, while growth in the number of transactions reached 17%. Greek cards play a dominant role in this trend, with an increase of 15.5% in value and by 18% in number, while transactions with foreign cards decreased by 10% in terms of value, while in number they increased by 9%.

According to the Cardlink figures, transactions up to €10 are slightly less than half of those at store terminals, as Papadopoulos noted that “more and more people are getting used to making small purchases with their card.” Specifically, 42% is up to €10, 8.5% up to €5 and 7.5% up to just €2. That behavior is similar in e-commerce, as 20% of transactions are up to €10 and 5% up to €5, while 1% of transactions are up to €2.

Assisting the spread of card transactions in recent years has been the rapid expansion of their acceptance points, i.e. POS terminals, the number of which according to data presented by Mastercard’s country manager for Greece, Cyprus and Malta, Panagiotis Polydoros, currently amounts to 775,000 out of a total of 820,000 merchants.


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