Nearly 30 per cent of respondents install new electronic payment tools to receive digital vouchers, LU survey shows

2 Dec 2021

Three out 10 respondents have installed new electronic payment tools to receive digital vouchers, a recent survey by the Hong Kong Institute of Business Studies of Lingnan University unveiled.


The research team, in cooperation with HK01, carried out a 10-day online survey in mid-October targeting Hong Kong citizens aged 18 or above, with an aim to understand consumers’ electronic payment habits and levels of satisfaction towards the Consumption Voucher Scheme after the distribution of the first electronic vouchers. A total of 7,216 valid response were collected.


The survey results showed that nearly 30 per cent of respondents have installed new electronic payment tools to receive digital vouchers, indicating that the Scheme has helped popularise digital payment in Hong Kong.


According to the results, Alipay got the highest proportion of those respondents who had not used any electronic payment (45%), or those had used more than one payment tool (including Octopus) (43%) before the launch of the Scheme. The survey also found that over 40% of the younger generation aged 35 or below have chosen Alipay as their electronic payment tool, making Alipay the most popular one among the four electronic payment operators for youngsters.


Promotion discounts of the operators (27%), pre-installation and use (25%), and coverage of merchants of the operators (24%) were the three main reasons for respondents to choose payment tools. In terms of satisfaction level, about 70 per cent of the respondents have a positive rating on the use of consumption vouchers.


The survey findings also showed that 64 per cent of the respondents used up the first vouchers within a month, and 20 per cent used them up within a week, implying that the Scheme could stimulate local consumption in the short run. It also found that the digital vouchers were mainly used for daily consumption, of which catering (74%), daily necessities (52%), and food (49%) top the list of consumption by purpose. In contrast to supermarkets, where 75 per cent of the respondents used their vouchers, only 4 per cent spent on tourism and hospitality. These indicated that industries tied with people’s livelihoods benefited more from the Scheme. In addition, more than 40 per cent of the respondents paid extra to purchase more expensive goods, signifying that the distribution of consumer vouchers can encourage consumer spending.


The research team pointed out that while the Scheme could help drive particular industries such as retail and catering to increase revenue, it may have limited impact on industries that are severely affected by the pandemic such as hotels and tourism. Thus, the team recommended that the Government should issue consumer vouchers for particular industries in the future to stabilise their growth. The team also recommended that if the Government re-launches the Consumer Voucher Scheme, it should introduce more electronic payment platforms. This will not only provide the public with more options but also encourage operators to continually reduce transaction and handling fees, increasing market share and promoting healthy competition thereupon.


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