Younger Aussies 'are increasingly turning to debit cards'

Debit cards appear to be the payment method of choice among younger Australians, if a new study is to be believed.

According to research undertaken by analytics firm Quantium and National Australia Bank (NAB), Generations Y and Z are far more comfortable using this form of plastic when buying goods.

Researchers looked at card transactions from a number of different outlets in order to identify spending patterns.

They discovered that in the supermarket, Gen Y and Z members spent twice as much on their debit cards as they did on credit cards and it was a similar story at petrol stations too.

There is a clear difference between generations, as older people – referred to in the study as Gen X and Baby Boomers – are lapping up credit card deals at the moment.

NAB's general manager of cards and personal loans Michael Shurlin said the results were not surprising.

"This isn't unusual as we're seeing stronger growth amongst the younger generations opening both transaction and savings accounts and an increase in the number of older consumers taking advantage of rewards credit cards," he remarked.

The Reserve Bank of Australia recently revealed that people down under have been working hard to reduce their credit card debt since 2006 and it seems the younger generations are leading the way.

Mr Shurlin insisted that his organisation will advise each individual customer on which plastic products will best suit their needs.

It just so happens that people who fall under the Gen X/Baby Boomer category are in a better position to access credit, as they will have had more time to build up their funds.

"Australians make decisions every day about the best way to pay for goods and services," Mr Shurlin continued.

"Choosing the right payment channel can make it easier to manage your money each month," he added.

Credit cards are handy for people who have an unexpectedly large payment to make, whereas debit cards are perhaps better for those who like to stick to a rigid budget.

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