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    80% of Brits have used alternative payment methods this year

    Eight in ten UK consumers with bank accounts have used an alternative to traditional cash and plastic cards in the last 12 months, research by Gocompare.com has found. 4% have made an NFC mobile payment, 4% have used Google Wallet, 2% have used Pingit, 2% have used Apple Pay and 1% have used Paym.

    GocompareThe most popular alternative payment system used in the last year was PayPal at 70%. 19% have used a contactless debit card and 11% have used a contactless credit card.

    Convenience was cited as the main reason for using new payment systems by 50% of the 2,001 respondents while 24% said they were easier to use than cash or traditional bank cards. A fifth plan to use new payment systems more in the future and 36% of those surveyed would like to see more websites offering alternative payment methods.

    While 36% of those surveyed have received a contactless debit or credit card, only a quarter have used the card to make a purchase. 46% are worried about fraud, 24% find contactless payments and digital wallet payments “scary”, while a fifth expect to make a contactless payment this year. Only 3% are unaware of what a contactless payment is and 26% of those surveyed are “scared” by the idea of using their smartphone to pay.

    15% are concerned that using new digital payment systems will encourage them to spend more and 7% don’t connect their spending in this way with ‘real money’. Additionally, 28% have downloaded a mobile banking app and 19% have made a payment through a banking app on their smartphone.

    Spending concerns

    “It’s clear from our research that new technology is changing the way we spend and manage our money, with many people now reaching for their phones rather than their wallets to pay for goods and services,” says Gocompare.com’s Matt Sanders.

    “Perhaps unsurprisingly, 18 to 24 year olds who have grown up in the internet age are particularly tuned into and less fazed by the new digital ways to spend money, finding them easier to use than cash or traditional bank cards. Worryingly, our survey suggests some of these young adults are struggling to connect their digital spending with real money. More than double the number of people in this age group are concerned that digital payments encourage them to spend more than they should.

    “While the new payment systems help remove some of the hassle of remembering PIN numbers or re-keying in of information, they also make it quicker to spend money. But many people lose track of their spending and lots of small payments soon add-up to a sizeable bill.”

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