Survey of Consumer Payment Choice

This survey fills a gap in knowledge about the role of consumers in the transformation of payments from paper to electronic.

  • Consumers report adoption of of nine payment instruments, including cash.
  • Consumers report frequency of use of the nine instruments.
  • Consumers rate instrument characteristics like security, cost, and convenience.
  • Latest Update

    Updated on September 5, 2019

    The 2018 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice (SCPC) is the 11th in a series of annual studies that aim to gain a comprehensive understanding of the payment behavior of U.S. consumers.

    In 2018, U.S. consumers made 72 payments per month on average. The most frequently used payment instruments were debit cards (34 percent of all transactions), cash (24 percent), and credit cards (23 percent). Debit cards replaced cash as the payment instrument used most frequently for in-person purchases for the first time.

    Percentage share of consumer payments in a typical month, by type of payment instrument

    This survey includes questions about credit-card revolving, responsibility for managing household finances, and experience with lost or stolen payment instruments.

    • Consumers report adoption of nine payment instruments, including cash.
    • Consumers report frequency of use of the nine instruments.
    • Consumers rate instrument characteristics like security, cost, and convenience.

    View the 2018 survey

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