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“Greeks still prefer to make their transactions in cash…”

Digital wallets, or e-wallets, have been around for a while. Google was the first major company to launch a digital payment service in 2011. Although it served only Citibank clients with Mastercard cards then, the service didn’t take long to evolve into what we have today.

E-wallets have reached the market as a hassle-free option for bank accounts since they can store money and make and receive payments without so much bureaucracy. How is this service going on in Greece?

Digital Space

Greeks still prefer to make their transactions in cash: according to data from 2021, 54% of payments were in cash. Far behind come the e-wallets, with 26%; 13% above card payments. So, although cash is still the most preferred payment method, e-wallets are clearly more popular regarding online transactions.

There’s a strong reason behind such popularity. Due to the financial crisis in the country, the government began to seize funds from ordinary citizens’ accounts. It happened with account holders of all ages, including pensioners. So, it became “dangerous” to leave money in the bank.

The government doesn’t have much control over digital wallets; most of them are based outside the country. So, these wallets became a safer and simpler way to carry digital transactions. Many Greeks use it daily for grocery shopping, travel and entertainment, like gambling on online casinos such as

digital wallet greece
Greeks still prefer to make their transactions in cash.

Popular options

Online transactions already correspond to about 6% of the country’s GDP, a figure that’s set to grow to 10% by 2026. Although credit cards such as Visa and Mastercard are still standard online payment methods, digital wallets are set to gain more space among online shoppers. Here are three of the most popular e-wallets in Greece:


PayPal was launched well before Google’s option in 1998. However, it only started gaining momentum when eBay acquired it in 2002; in 2006, the service was already offered internationally. Since it obtained a banking licence from the EU in 2007, it gained more access to the European market. It works with 25 currencies in more than 200 countries and operates with cryptos, such as Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, and Litecoin.

Apple Pay

Apple Pay is a convenient payment method, though it’s restricted to Apple users. It allows both online payments and payments on land-based stores. Apple Pay is a very secure payment method since it protects the users’ IDs and only allows operation with biometrics, such as FaceID and TouchID.


Qiwi is one of the most popular e-wallets in Greece. The service is built on a Visa prepaid account, counting over 20 million active users. This payment method is accepted by over 10,000 merchants and gives clients access to Visa’s products and worldwide acceptance.

The future

Digital payments are growing strongly in the country, at about 11% yearly. Such numbers will likely make this market grow above USD 13 billion by 2027. The instability of the banking system is also likely to push more people to this payment method. Digital wallets can store different currencies and even cryptocurrencies, which is perfect for international online transactions.

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