South Africa’s payment landscape is evolving rapidly. A blend of traditional and modern payment methods caters to a diverse consumer base. The digitization wave is reshaping, aided by increasing internet penetration. This article explores various payment methods in South Africa. It sheds light on the trends and actors driving the payment ecosystem in 2023.

Payment by card in South Africa

Visa, Mastercard, Diners Club, and American Express remain key players in the card payment sector in South Africa. As of 2020, there were an estimated 50.1 million payment cards in circulation in the countryโ€‹1โ€‹. Exact figures for 2023 are not available. However, the market showed growth in the number of financial cards in 2022โ€‹2โ€‹. This growth trend suggests a potential increase in the number of cards in circulation, driven by both consumers and merchants who appreciate the convenience and security associated with card payments. The continuous expansion and acceptance of card payment methods underscore the evolving payment landscape in South Africa, aligning with global trends towards cashless transactions.

Payment by cash

Cash transactions remain a crucial part of the payment ecosystem, especially in e-commerce. E-commerce businesses have adapted to accommodate consumers who prefer cash payments by enabling cash payments at checkout. Consumers can perform online payments using cash at various outlets, seamlessly integrating the traditional with the digital, offering a unique shopping experience that caters to a broad spectrum of consumeโ€‹1โ€‹

Payment by Bank Transfer

Bank transfers, facilitated by institutions like FNB, Absa, Capitec, TymeBank, and Standard Bank, have become a staple in the online transaction space, capturing a significant portion of the e-commerce sales. The ease and immediacy of bank transfers have contributed to their popularity among South African consumers.

Local actors: FNB, Absa, Capitec, Tyme Bank, Standard Bank

FNB Logoย  ABSA logoย  Capitec Logoย  TymeBank logoย  StandardBank logo

Payment by installment and BNPL

The Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) segment continues to flourish in South Africa, providing a flexible payment solution to consumers facing financial constraints. The model has been embraced by merchants, further driving the transaction value and volume of BNPL in the market.

Local actors: Tyme Bank,, PayFlex, PayJustNow, Mobicred

TymeBank logoย  Payflex logoย  PayJustNow logoย  Mobicred Logo

Payment by digital wallet and X-Pay

With a high mobile phone penetration rate, digital wallets are swiftly becoming a preferred payment method in South Africa. Mobile-based payment solutions like Samsung Pay are gaining traction, with a notable increase in the usage of digital wallets for e-commerce transactions.

Local actors: FNB, Yoyo

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If the payment methods in South Africa intrigue you, feel free to access the #PayWorldTour library for more insights.

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