News Local More credit card use for small purchases amid pandemic

More credit card use for small purchases amid pandemic


Kiosks and newsagents saw a 103% increase in credit card transactions, while travel related business recorded a 91% decrease in the quarter ending June 30, reflecting changing consumer habits imposed by the coronavirus outbreak.

Consumers appear to have heeded calls to use cash as little as possible during the outbreak and this is reflected in increased use of cards for smaller purchases such as at kiosks and bakeries.

According to figures published by JCC, supermarkets recorded a 33% increase, other food and drink shops and bakeries a 36% increase and insurance a 47% increase.

In contrast, with airports closed, credit card transactions for travel-related businesses fell 91%.

Moreover, due to the lockdown that was in force for several weeks, petrol stations recorded a 32% decrease. Clothing, Shoes & Accessories saw a 39% decrease. Shops were closed until early May with the exception of shopping malls which reopened on June 9,

JCC gave the following detailed analysis and explanation. The comparison below is with the respective period of 2019:

  • Local and Foreign Cards in Cyprus and Abroad
  • Local Cards used in Cyprus (Sales)
    • Quarter 2 2020: €1,159,778,823 23% increase
  • Local Cards used Abroad (Sales and Cash withdrawals)
    • Quarter 2 2020: €324,315,427 30% decrease
  • Foreign Cards used in Cyprus: (Sales)
    • Quarter 2 2020: €72,518,409 76% decrease
  • Foreign Cards used in Cyprus: (Sales and Cash withdrawals)
    • Quarter 2 2020: €108,898,259 70% decrease
  • Local cards in occupied areas and Turkish cards in Cyprus
  • Turkish cards in Cyprus
    • Quarter 2 2020: €386,746
  • Local Cards in occupied areas
    • Quarter 2 2020: €386,071

The sectors affected this month for the Cards used in Cyprus are:


  • Kiosks & Newsagents 103% increase
  • Supermarkets 33% increase
  • Other food and drink shops and bakeries 36% increase
  •  Insurance 47% increase


  • Travel-related businesses 91% decrease
  • Petrol Stations 32% decrease
  • Clothing, Shoes & Accessories 39% decrease


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