Americans More Likely to Pay Bills on Time When Cards Are Accepted

Americans More Likely to Pay Bills on Time When Cards Are Accepted

November 29, 2018         Written By Lynn Oldshue

Nearly half (46%) of Americans fail to pay their bills on time.

According to a new report from ACI Worldwide, Americans are more likely to pay bills on time when debit or credit cards are accepted. Of the 46% of respondents who pay bills late, 72% were “very likely” or “extremely likely” to make an on-time payment if the company accepts cards.

The survey, titled U.S. Consumer Payments Experience: A Blueprint for Creating Positive Behaviors, found that 39% of consumers make recurring payments rather making each payment individually. Recurring payments were most common for health insurance, where 57% of respondents have set up automatic payments. Only 43% of participants had automatic payments for higher education (mostly student loans), followed by 41% for mortgages and 38% for auto loans.

Many consumers are frustrated about their bill payment options. Almost half (44%) of respondents were either frustrated or extremely frustrated because they cannot pay a bill with a credit card. A similar 42% said the same about debit cards. Sixty-nine percent said they were frustrated or extremely frustrated because they have to pay a processing fee due to their bill payment method.

Sixty-four percent of consumers face some level of anxiety when thinking about their bills. Only 17% said they can pay unforeseen bills without using a line of credit, while 26% say they can afford that most of the time.

Most Americans say they pay their bills near payday (35%) or when they come in (32%), while 13% say they pay bills on their due dates. However, the frequency of on-time payments varies by bill. For instance, 64% of respondents always pay their mortgage bills on time, compared to 37% who make timely payments on their medical bills.

Overall, consumers want flexibility when it comes to bill payments. Eighty-two percent of survey participants would like a website to have the option to pay bills over time, and 69% say they are likely to make a payment if they can pay via text.

The information contained within this article was accurate as of November 29, 2018. For up-to-date information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website. Many of the offers on this article are from our affiliate partners, and may be compensated if you take action with any of our affiliate partners.


About Lynn Oldshue

Lynn Oldshue has written personal finance stories for for twelve years. She majored in public relations at Mississippi State University.
View all posts by Lynn Oldshue
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