The number of Irish  consumers regularly using a mobile device – whether a smartphone, tablet or wearable – to make payments has tripled in the past year according to Visa’s 2016 Digital Payments Study.

The study, which surveyed more than 36,000 online consumers in 19 European countries reveals how consumer adoption of digital payments has shifted dramatically in the last 12 months. One year ago, 38% of the people surveyed said they had never used a mobile device to make payments and had no plans to do so. Today, that number has dropped to 12%.

Fifty four per cent of European consumers surveyed regularly use a mobile device to make payments for a range of activities, compared to just 18% who were asked whether they used mobile payments to pay for everyday goods and services when the same study was conducted last year.

Interestingly, Mobile Payments users also say that they are as comfortable making more expensive purchases on mobile devices as they are with everyday payments.

In Ireland, more than a third (34%) purchase high-value items such as holidays and electronics on a mobile device as well as regular transactions such as paying household bills (38%) and paying for parking (20%).

The research also shows that mobile banking activity is increasing across all age groups. For the first time, more than half of European respondents in all age brackets are using mobile banking. Whilst millennials remain the most prolific category, other age groups are rapidly catching up. With a growth rate of 33%, the highest growth rate is the 55-64 year olds, while millennials 18-34 have a growth rate of 24%.

In Ireland, nearly 4 out of 5 (78%) of the people surveyed are Mobile Payments users. Nearly half of these users use their device to transfer money to friends and family (40%) and over a third will use it to purchase bus or train tickets (34%).

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