Most payments in Estonia are made in real time
Estonian companies and residents made an average of 482,000 payments a day in the third quarter, and 87% of them were instant payments. The share of payments made in real time will increase further in the near future. All payments made in Estonia within one bank and 47% of interbank payments are made as instant payments.
Some three quarters of all the domestic payments made in Estonia are made within one bank. Estonian companies and residents made a daily average in the third quarter of 107,000 interbank payments, which are payments where the accounts of the payer and the payee are in different banks. Around half of the interbank payments are made instantly.
Only 13% of payments now are of the sort where the payee has to wait several hours or over a whole weekend to get their money. The share of payments made in real time will probably increase further in the near future as some banks are transitioning gradually to the instant payments system. Currently only payments that are for less than 15,000 euros can be sent through the instant payments system.
Private individuals initiated 62% of payments in the third quarter. Half of these were initiated through an internet bank or a mobile app. One-fifth of payments were made through a bank link, where the payer is directed to a pre-filled payment order in the internet bank. Private individuals initiated one-fifth of payments as e-invoice standing orders. This is where the payer has entrusted a regular payment to their bank, and the bank makes the payment on their behalf at a pre-arranged time. Other ways of paying such as payments through ATMs or in cash at a bank office are being used less and less frequently.