NZ Post to stop taking cheques

NZ Post Shop.
From 29 February, customers will have to pay for post shop services using cash or electronic methods. Photo credit: Newshub.

As the number of Kiwis using cheques continues to decline, NZ Post has announced its decision to stamp out cheques from the end of next month.

From 29 February, the state-owned post services provider will no longer accept payments by cheque, as it will be unable to process them.  

Commenting on the decision, a spokesperson for NZ Post said that use of cheques is declining at the rate of 20 percent year-on-year and online and eftpos payments have become the norm.

"Currently, NZ Post accepts cheques for products like stamps and packaging, for some over-the-counter bill payments and to pay for post office boxes.

"After 28 February 2020, NZ Post products and services in our retail outlets that are processed through a NZ Post specific sales system called PostLink will no longer accept cheques. 

"Customers will need to use alternative methods of payment," the spokesperson said.

The decision follows Kiwibank's announcement in May 2019 that it would ditch cheques from 28 February 2020, in favour of "faster, safer and cheaper" payment options.  

A Westpac spokesperson said that while cheque usage has been steadily falling for many years, the bank has no specific timeline for phasing them out. 

A BNZ spokesperson said that given the wide range of payment options like Apple Pay, Google Pay and transfers through online banking now available, cheque volumes have been steadily declining.

"We still support the small number of customers using cheque while supporting their adoption of digital technologies," the BNZ spokesperson confirmed.

People who are already well-versed with paying electronically are unlikely to be affected by the change. 

Those who prefer to pay their car registration or power bill by visiting their local postal service provider (e.g. through Unichem or Paper Plus), can continue to do so, however as cheques will no longer be accepted, they'll need to take their debit or credit card along - or have cash at the ready to pay it.

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