Fewer cash transactions in Spain because of Bizum

by Lorraine Williamson

MADRID – The use of banknotes and coins is still widespread in Spain. However, more and more people regularly use Bizum, which is a safe and alternative way to send or receive money instantly using a smartphone. You don´t even need to know their account number. All you need is their mobile phone number, and the money will be transferred to their account usually in under 10 seconds.

According to a survey by the Central Bank of Spain, Bizum is now used by some 22 million Spaniards (36% of the population). Almost all banks offer it. More and more retailers are also allowing payments via Bizum. This is the case, for example, in some Inditex stores, such as Stradivarius, Oysho and Massimo Dutti. 

Related post: Right to make cash payments enshrined in Spanish law 

Bizum is fast and free

The practice is especially widespread among people under the age of 30. Users appreciate the payment option because it is simple, fast and free. This has subsequently led to approximately 40% of Spanish businesses currently accepting Bizum as a means of payment. 

Bizum is linked to the user’s mobile number. The means of payment has already become almost as common as traditional bank transfers. According to the same study, they are used regularly by 37% of the population. 

The use of Bizum is especially high in sparsely populated areas. Many people here have to travel a long way to a bank branch or an ATM. Then Bizum is a handy and practical alternative. 

Related post: What happens if you pay more than 1,000 euros in cash in Spain? 

El País writes that an estimated 1.6 million inhabitants of Spain live in communities that do not have their own bank branches. Despite the digital development, many Spaniards prefer to pay cash. The main argument for this is that they have better control over their expenditure. Click here to see if your Spanish bank also has Bizum. 

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