Kiwis collectively wrote out more than 30 million cheques last year - an average of 6.5 per person over the year to October.

Latest figures from Payments New Zealand show cheque usage has halved in the last three years.

In October 2013 Kiwis wrote out 4.4 million cheques but by October last year it was 2.24 million for the month.

And it has fallen dramatically in the last six years.


In 2010 the average Kiwi wrote 18 cheques per year but that fell to eight in 2015 and was 6.5 per person last year.

Meanwhile credit card usage is on the rise.

The average number of credit card transactions grew from 58 a year in 2010 to 103 in 2016.

Debit cards are still the most popular way to pay but usage has grown at a slower rate than credit cards rising from an average of 198 to 232 transactions per year over six years.

While we are using our credit cards more often, the average amount spent per transaction has fallen from $94 to $71, a snapshot of October spending shows.

This could reflect the growth of paywave technology which allows credit card users to pay by waving their card over a terminal for transactions under $80.

Consumers can still wave their card for transactions over $80 but also have to enter their PIN as an extra security precaution.

The average spend on debit cards is much lower at $38 and has barely risen since 2010 when it was $37.


The data also shows both card and electronic payment usage is growing.

Card transactions grew by 6.9 per cent in 2016 while electronic payments including automatic payments, bill payments and direct credits and debits grew 5.5 per cent last year, although this data does not include electronic payments made by two different customers with the same bank.

Altogether Payments NZ processed $1.1 trill lion in the year to October 2016.