Nearly half of Canadians expect to continue paying digitally even after the pandemic ends: study


Published December 2, 2020 at 1:35 am


As the pandemic rages on—it’s now been more than eight months since the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic—shopping habits among Canadians is still not where it was before this past March.

A recent study from Payments Canada found that a significant number of Canadians said the pandemic has altered their preferred choice of payment—something they anticipate will persist long-term.

According to the findings, 44 per cent of respondents said since the onset of the pandemic, they prefer to pay through digital or contactless options, something they anticipate will continue even after the pandemic ends.

However, 31 per cent said they expect to use cash more as the economy recovers, while 34 per cent have no intention of returning to cash.

Additionally, 47 per cent of respondents said they were using the tap options on their credit and debit cards more than before the pandemic, while 40 per cent reported feeling uncomfortable when forced to touch debit and credit card machines, and 36 per cent actively avoid retailers that do not provide contactless payment options.

Further, 64 per cent of respondents reported using ATMs less frequently during the pandemic, while 42 per cent said they were uncomfortable handling cash in general.

Moreover, 61 per cent of Canadians are spending less during the pandemic, while 48 per cent reported using e-commerce platforms more due to the pandemic, and 41 have been tipping more during these uncertain times.

“In this most recent research, about 60 per cent of Canadians report that they continue to spend less than before the pandemic,” Tracey Black, president and CEO of Payments Canada, said in a news release.

“Businesses across Canada are focused on how to best meet consumer needs as the pandemic continues. For many retailers, this includes building and leveraging an online presence and offering convenient and secure payment options for customers at point-of-sale,” she continued.

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