Latest Banking Posts

Featured Stories

Filter By Categories
Rosie Murray-West
By
May 30, 2019

Travel Money Report Reveals An Inexorable Rise For The Prepaid Card

travel report teaser

Consumer Intelligence's 2019 spring Travel Report reveals an inexorable rise for the prepaid card.


 

Prepaid travel money cards are continuing to increase in popularity, particularly with the younger generation, according to Consumer Intelligence’s latest travel money survey.


The latest edition of the biannual survey, which will be released in June, contains data on how British holidaymakers spend while travelling. It reveals differences between generations and destinations, and a growing reliance on technology from British travellers spending abroad.


“The Consumer Intelligence survey always gives us a huge amount of information about the market, and this year is no exception,” says banking expert Andy Buller. “We’ve been interested to see a growing awareness of challenger brands, as well as acceptance of newer methods of travel spending.”


One finding from the study is the increase in prepaid card use. Nearly a fifth of all travellers (18%) used a prepaid card when they last travelled, up from 16% in the November survey. Ownership of these cards is now becoming very high, with well over a third of people owning a current or disused prepaid travel product.

 

In what format did you buy your most recent  travel money?

 

Cash travel money

91%

Prepaid travel card

18%

Travellers’ cheques

7%

Total

100%

 

Do you own a prepaid card?

 

Yes – and I still top it up and use it

21%

Yes – but I no longer use it

17%

No – I have never had a pre-paid card

62%

Total

100%

 

The number of people using these products is far higher amongst younger age groups, who are far less likely to carry cash. In the 25-34 age group, almost half continue to use and top up an existing card, and 19% have a dormant one. Amongst under 24s, a quarter have an unused card, and 11% have one that they continue to top up.


Do you own a prepaid card? Respondents 25-34 years old

Yes – and I still top it up and use it

46%

Yes – but I no longer use it

19%

No – I have never had a pre-paid card

36%

 

Do you own a prepaid card? respondents 18-24 years old

 

Yes – and I still top it up and use it

11%

Yes – but I no longer use it

24%

No – I have never had a pre-paid card

64%

 

“It’s clear that awareness of these cards among younger people has really grown,” Andy Buller says. “The next challenge for providers is ensuring that the cards do not become dormant. A significant number of respondents had unused cards. Providers must work out how to reignite their interest in these cards in order to retain customers.”

The study shows that prepaid cards are still popular because of the security aspect, but customers also value the good exchange rate that they get. Convenience is the third most cited reason for using a prepaid card.

“Travellers have been carrying cash for many years, but it makes them nervous,” Andy Buller says. “It’s great to see that so many now see prepaid cards as a solution, but rates are important too. Providers will need to stress both aspects if they want to keep existing customers and make new ones this summer. Interestingly, other well-advertised plus points of the cards, such as the ability to use them for several currencies, seem less of a draw for travellers - worth bearing in mind when devising marketing strategies.”

 

What is your main reason for using a prepaid card?

 

It feels safer than carrying lots of cash

42%

It is more convenient

11%

I can keep a pre-paid card and use it again

6%

I can top up easily when I am abroad

8%

I get a better exchange rate this way

26%

I can use it for multiple currencies

5%

I don’t have to use my normal debit/credit card for card payments

2%

Total

100%


While the Post Office still took the top spot when respondents were asked to name their existing pre-paid card providers, new provider Revolut is advancing swiftly up the ranks, and now has a eight per cent share of the market. Challengers Monzo and WeSwap also make into the top ten.

“While the market for physical travel cash has remained quite traditional, with providers with strong retail presences typically taking the lion’s share, it seems easier to build a brand in the prepaid market without the need for shopfronts or branches,” Andy Buller says. “The likes of Revolut, Monzo and WeSwap have become household names in a short period of time thanks to innovation and the power of social media.”

 

Who is your existing prepaid card provider?

 

Post Office

13%

Revolut

8%

Thomas Cook

7%

HSBC

7%

Moneycorp

6%

NatWest

5%

FairFX

5%

Caxton FX

5%

Monzo

5%

WeSwap

5%

 

For more insight from the survey, which covers everything from the amount of currency taken to the destinations customers choose, sign up here to download the full report, with responses from 1500 people, as soon as it is published in June.

 

 


Be the first to receive our latest travel money report

Consumer Intelligence’s latest travel money survey shows that the travel money market is changing in response to Fintech innovations and the growing prevalence of a cashless society.


The latest edition of the biannual survey, which will be released in June, contains data on how British holidaymakers spend while travelling. It reveals differences between generations and destinations, and a growing reliance on technology from British travellers spending abroad.

 

Request Report




Post a comment . . . 

 


Subscribe to newsletter

Subscribe