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Zoomers: How Much Do They Value Real-Time Payments?

Posted by Nikhita Gurukula on 26 Jul 2022

Generation Z doesn’t really remember a time when they couldn’t get what they want—instantly. With everyday experiences such as 3-day Amazon Prime deliveries and ubiquitous high-speed internet taken for granted, the patience of Zoomers is almost nonexistent. This mindset bleeds into this generation’s perception of money movement.

Tech-savvy Zoomers’ decisions are driven by convenience and abundant options. They prefer stores and restaurants that offer many payment options, including real-time payments. Even if real-time payments are not a Zoomer’s first preference, a Zoomer is likely to still want the option.

What Are Real-Time Payments?

According to Payments Journal, real-time payments are initiated and settled electronically almost instantaneously. RTP networks provide access all the time for this exact reason. Real-time payments can apply to insurance, payroll, utility bill payments, and more. They should not be confused with faster payments, as faster payments are not necessarily instantaneous.

Perks of Real-Time Payments

  • Instant Communication: When an individual transaction is made, real-time transmission of more data follows. 
  • Instant Access to Funds: Recipients do not have to wait for funds. 
  • Financial Control: Instant bill payment, more substantial cash flow, and better budgeting are results of real-time payments.
  • Cash Positioning: Consumers expect seamless integration with systems like invoicing and bill payment.  

Real-time payments are valued highly by individuals and businesses that need funds quickly. Zoomers, on the other hand, have varying opinions. Generation Z heavily uses peer-to-peer payment applications like Venmo and Zelle. These apps transfer money from the app to the bank account and can instantly do so for a fee. Most P2P providers charge 2%-3% current fee charges drawn from credit or debit cards. These transfers rout through the TCH RTP® network. Although Zoomers use these P2P apps for convenience when out with friends,  “buy now, pay later (BNPL)” is popular as well.

Zoomer Attitudes on BNPL 

Mercator Research found that 52% of Zoomers used BNPL or short-term loans in the last year. The majority of Generation Z feels like BNPL offers financial flexibility. Younger folks have a limited cash flow, and with BNPL, they can afford to buy larger items. However beneficial “buy now, pay later” may be for Zoomers, many do recognize the downsides of it as well. Accumulating debt with BNPL can lead to users having little to no savings. 

How Many Zoomers Prefer Real-Time Payments? 

Javelin Strategy & Research conducted a study to look at today’s real-time payments landscape. This study concluded that 90% of Gen Z felt that it was important to have instant access to funds. Zoomers utilize real-time payments in social situations where they need to pay friends back. Gen Z is typically averse to debt accumulation or being late. Real-time payments also go hand-in-hand with deeper digital engagement with peer-to-peer apps. 

Real-Time Payments and COVID-19

Because of the pandemic, credit unions began exploring real-time payments. By the end of May 2020, 50% of the world issued faster payments through RTPs. Due to sanitary reasons and convenience, people veered away from checks and cash and moved to digital payments. And, due to Gen Z’s aversion to debt accumulation, Zoomers prefer real-time payments.  

However popular the “buy now, pay later” mindset may be, real-time payments also match the speed Generation Z expects. Their mindset and the world’s changes after the pandemic, all play a major role in the value that real-time payments hold for Zoomers. 

Read more about Zoomers in Zoomers: Traditional Financial Institutions Vs. Neobanks.


Today’s legacy and siloed banking technology infrastructure limit credit unions’ ability to rapidly innovate. It’s time to look at money movement in a new way. Alacriti’s Orbipay Unified Money Movement Services does just that. Whether it’s real-time payments, digital disbursements, or bill pay, our cloud-based platform enables credit unions to quickly and seamlessly deliver modern digital payments and money movement experiences. To speak to an Alacriti payments expert, please call us at (908) 791-2916 or email info@alacriti.com.

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Nikhita Gurukula Marketing Intern Nikhita Gurukula is an intern for Alacriti's marketing team, who is currently a sophomore in college. Currently attending Pennsylvania State University's Smeal School of Business, Nikhita is exploring and developing her skills in marketing throughout her college journey. Her areas of interest are content marketing and social media marketing. Nikhita brings the Zoomer perspective to discussions surrounding banking and payments. She is excited to learn more about marketing within and beyond the FinTech industry!

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