This may be explained by the fact that Dutch consumers - often incorrectly - perceive them as more expensive, more complicated and slower than domestic transfers. A recent DNB study of how Dutch consumers make payments has revealed this.
Debit card payments abroad have become easier
Consumers have experienced various changes in the area of payments over the past few years. Point-of-sale payments now exploit chip technology, while credit transfers and direct debits use international bank account numbers (IBANs). These changes have taken place across the euro area within the context of the migration to SEPA. One of SEPA's objectives is to ensure that consumers can use their bank account and debit card throughout Europe, thereby standardising payment methods in the euro area. Specifically, the Dutch should be able to use their debit cards when making payments abroad in the same way as they do at home. The study shows that they do use their debit cards more often (see Chart 1), although their payment behaviour abroad still differs widely from that at home: when abroad, the Dutch use cash more often, and their debit cards less often in almost all payment situations.
Chart 1: Payment instruments the Dutch use most frequently in other euro countries, relative to 2006 (in percentage points)