Year after year, an increasing number of credit cards are used to conduct an increasing number of transactions in all parts of Switzerland. The Swiss whip out their card much more often than many other Europeans, in stores and also online thanks to the prevalence of computers.
Sweden has been leading the way when it comes to paper currency. For one, the first official banknotes in Europe were issued by the Bank of Stockholm in 1661; for another, no other country today is bidding farewell to cash with such consistency as Sweden. A growing number of branch banks, businesses and restaurants do not even accept cash any more. Mr and Mrs Swiss are not quite that far when it comes to cashless payment. However, the Swiss are in the upper mid-range in Europe with respect to payment by credit card. A study conducted by the University of St. Gallen predicts that every adult in Switzerland will have a credit card as early as the end of 2017.
According to the Swiss National Bank, the number of domestic credit cards in December 2017 totalled 6.3 million. Growth has picked up since 2012 and it continues to be strong.
The number of transactions conducted with credit cards has seen double-digit growth since 2012. Card payment is increasingly replacing cash payment and also involves small amounts to an ever greater extent. Credit cards are used for paying smaller and smaller amounts. This trend will continue in future thanks to contactless payment and mobile contactless payment.