Debit and credit card transactions surged sharply and hit an all-time high, with total transactions recorded at Tk 37,985.3 crore in July.
About Tk 35,407.2 crore and Tk 2,578.1 crore were processed through debit and credit cards respectively.
The total figure in June was Tk 37,236 crore.
During this month, the total number of debit and credit card transactions was Tk 34,744.7 crore and Tk 2,491.3 crore.
Latest data from Bangladesh Bank shows that since July 2021, credit card transactions alone grew by Tk 1,091.5 crore, marking a whopping 42.34% increase year-on-year (YoY) .
According to Bangladesh Bank data analysis in December 2018, credit card transactions were only Tk 1043.3 crore.
To compare the figures with previous years, in July 2019, the total credit card transaction amount was Tk 1048.1 crore, in July 2020 the amount increased to Tk 1252.4 crore and in July 2021, the amount was Tk 1486.6 crore.
Credit card addiction on the rise
Dependence on cards is increasing, especially on credit cards, due to changing customer buying habits.
In addition to withdrawing cash at the bank counter, this card can be used to pay for various types of goods and services without going to someone in need of cash.
Offering up to 45 days of interest-free repayment, some banks offer interest-free loans for six months with only a service charge.
Not only in the country but also abroad, credit cards can be used to purchase goods and services in foreign currencies.
In addition, the demand for dollar transactions on the card has increased significantly.
However, the dollar rate has recently been kept the same for cash and card withdrawals.
Bankers say transactions have increased since life returns to normal after 2 years of Covid-19 lockdown.
Although most people still use cash, the use of cash in daily transactions is decreasing.
Regarding the increase in card transactions, Jubair Ahmed Shihab, who works for a software company, told Dhaka Tribune that using cash is more risky, but if there is money on the card , the risk is relatively low.
Also, keeping a card is safer and more convenient than keeping cash in your pocket, he added.
Bank officials say that previously many customers did not want to take cards, but now the situation is gradually changing as many are turning to using cards.
E-commerce transactions have declined a lot due to recent scams by some organizations, otherwise card transactions would have increased, they added.
Banks have encouraged customers to turn to technology-enabled banking services. All public and private sector banks now offer technology-enabled banking services.
Mobile banking, internet banking, online payment system, online IPC report, credit cards, debit cards, prepaid cards and different ATM technologies have been added to these services.