PETALING JAYA: More Malaysians prefer to use electronic payments and are becoming less reliant on cash, according to the 2016 Visa Consumer Payment Attitudes survey. The survey was conducted by Toluna on 500 Malaysians to gain insights and assess their attitudes towards cash and card usage, mobile banking, contactless payments, online shopping and more. The survey revealed that 74% of Malaysians surveyed, prefer to make electronic payments instead of cash, an increase of 8% compared with 2015. Based on the study, 49% of respondents also admitted to having more payment cards in their wallets now compared with five years ago. The study disclosed that the main reasons for not carrying large amounts of cash include an increased habit of using payment cards and feeling unsafe using cash. “We are pleased to see a growing preference for electronic payments and shift away from cash among Malaysians,” Visa Country Manager for Malaysia Ng Kong Boon said in a statement yesterday. “These research results confirm the trends we are seeing in the market with a steady increase in number of Visa debit and credit cards being issued, along with new payment solutions such as mobile wallets,” he added. The survey also found that 60% of Malaysians said they would like payments to be automated, doing away with the physical process of paying for a product or service, and a similar number were comfortable with the use of biometrics, such as fingerprinting and face recognition for payment authentication. “Given the evolving landscape, which has transformed the way consumers make payments, Malaysians are clearly upbeat about technological advancements in payment solutions. We are heartened that technology savvy Malaysians are quick to recognise the benefits of using contactless cards, wearables and mobile payments as we continue to push to accelerate the growth of electronic payments in the country, in line with Bank Negara Malaysia’s goal for Malaysia to become a cashless society by the year 2020,” Ng said.