Survey: More Malaysians prefer cashless payment with debit cards, online banking

A Nielsen survey has found that 67 per cent of Malaysians use some form of cashless payment. — AFP file pic
A Nielsen survey has found that 67 per cent of Malaysians use some form of cashless payment. — AFP file pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 17 —  A survey has found that 67 per cent of Malaysians use some form of cashless payment with debit cards and online banking being the preferred methods.

Nielsen Malaysia’s Malaysian Payment Landscape syndicated report revealed that 63 per cent of Malaysians use debit cards and 57 per cent use online banking, mostly to make payments for recurring expenses such as phone and internet bills.

It said only 27 per cent use credit cards to pay for their expenses and even fewer use mobile wallets at eight per cent.

The management firm said that payment preferences also shift depending on the type of expenses.

While two in three Malaysians have a debit card, it said its usage for day-to-day expenses remained relatively low as cash is overwhelmingly preferred for everyday activities.

It added that the use of credit cards to pay for everyday expenses is comparatively low; only one in four Malaysians use a credit card for this purpose, mainly those aged between 35 and 64.

The firm also said that while awareness on mobile wallets in Malaysia is high (88 per cent), concerns on security and fraud are the biggest barrier to adoption with 50 per cent of non-users citing security as the main reason for not making the switch to mobile wallets.

Another barrier is the fear of overspending, it said, with one in three consumers abstaining from using mobile wallets to avoid spending beyond their means.

Despite these perceptions, Nielsen Malaysia Consumer Insights Executive Director Anil Antony said in a statement that he believed that the future for mobile wallets is bright.

“Existing mobile wallet users cite convenience as the biggest driver of usage, and we believe that adoption will rise driven by the growing popularity of app-based online shops, ride hailing services, online gaming and cinema ticket booking.

“It is therefore up to mobile wallet providers to give consumers surety regarding the security and safety of their platforms,” he said.

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