Why Most Consumers Still Prefer Paper Statements

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If you’re still resisting the nudges from your bank or credit card company to go paperless, you’re not alone.

Most consumers — 54 percent — still receive a paper statement for a credit card or checking account, according to a new CreditCards.com survey of 1,000 U.S. adults.

Among consumers who prefer paper, nearly half are so attached that they would choose to continue receiving paper statements even if they were charged extra for them.

Reasons commonly cited by people who prefer paper statements include:

  1. They like to keep paper for their records.
  2. They like to pay bills by check, and mailed statements provide the bill and the envelope.
  3. The paper serves as a reminder the bill has to be paid.
  4. They’re comfortable with paper.

Reasons commonly cited by people who prefer digital statements include:

  1. They can access them anywhere.
  2. It’s environmentally friendly to save paper.
  3. You can pay bills faster.
  4. They’re comfortable being online.

CreditCards.com’s survey found that age appears to affect a person’s preference, with the youngest consumers polled (ages 18 to 25) being six times more likely to prefer digital over paper statements compared with the oldest consumers polled (ages 71 and older).

Some consumers choose both forms of statements:

  • 55 percent of consumers who receive their checking and debit card account statements electronically also receive paper copies.
  • 44 percent of consumers who receive credit card statements electronically also receive paper statements.

As we reported this spring, a recent report from the National Consumer Law Center urges that paper statements should be available for free and that customers who prefer paper should not be steered into electronic billing by default.

The national nonprofit says there are several advantages to paper statements, even in the technology age. To learn more, check out “Why Old-Fashioned Paper Statements May Be a Better Choice.”

Do you receive paper statements, digital statements or both? Let us know why by commenting below or on our Facebook page.

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