New Zealand consumers remain wedded to their plastic cards for buying goods and services, but change is coming as more choose to adopt digital wallets on their devices.
The annual report into global payment habits and technologies by global fintech company, FIS, shows 80 percent of the value of local in-store purchases used credit or debit cards, and more than half the value of online sales.
The use of digital wallets such as Apple Pay, Alipay, and Paypal on mobile devices has been growing but lagged behind much of the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region, making up about 10 percent of sales last year, up from 7 percent the year before.
Regional manager for Worldpay, a subsidiary of FIS, Phil Pomford said the use of digital wallets for payments was becoming dominant around the world.
"While New Zealand is still behind the rest of APAC in terms of digital wallet use, the latest trend provides a promising opportunity for both global and local players to expand in the market," he said.
"Local merchants in all consumer-facing verticals need to make digital wallet acceptance a priority to seize the growth opportunities."
Mastercard senior vice president Surin Fernando said the wallets offered security, speed, and convenience, but needed greater acceptance and distribution through the retail sector, which would be driven by insistent consumers.
"As you allow more contactless acceptance points and that continues to grow, and the demand - particularly from inbound tourists - grows ... (that) increases the likelihood of retailers adopting this technology as well."
New Zealand and Australia remained leading users of buy-now-pay-later schemes, but also had the lowest uses of cash, while cryptocurrencies were slowly taking a greater share of online payments to businesses.