It was expected that debit cards would overtake cash in 2019, according to previous estimates by the banking trade body UK Finance, but the popularity of contactless and the growth of eCommerce and digital payment options have steadily been chipping away at the popularity of cash.

The UK Finance’s study showed that the average UK citizen made 20 debit card payments a month during 2017 and it predicts that 36% of all payments in 2027 will be via contactless payments.

Stephen Jones, chief executive, UK Finance says: “These trends are likely to shift further over the next decade. Developments such as Open Banking are expected to bring extensive changes to the payments landscape, something that will likely shape how we interact with our money in years to come”.

There are now over 119 million contactless cards in circulation, and almost two thirds of UK citizens now use contactless payments, compared to under a third in 2014.

With trends like this and reports stating that up to 50% of customers would not complete a purchase if cash were the only payment option, it’s never been so important that small businesses accept card payments. Richard Bradley, CEO of acceptcards, commented: “small businesses not taking card payments, or embracing the growth of eCommerce and digital payments, could find themselves cut off from the majority of customer transactions”.

Written by Richard Bradley – CEO