Polish payments by the numbers: Elixir, Express Elixir and BLIK payments statistics

Matthieu Blandineau
June 2024
min read

With the early introduction of instant payments and the high adoption of alternative payment methods, Poland is one of Europe's most dynamic payment markets.

In this article, we explore the state of the Polish payment landscape and how bank payment systems Elixir and Express Elixir compare to card and alternative payment methods.

A note about Polish payment statistics

Payment statistics in Poland are maintained and published by Narodowy Bank Polski, the central bank that oversees Polish payment systems. Every November, Narodowy Bank Polski publishes an oversight report for the prior year. As such, the latest available statistics are for the year 2022, but they highlight dynamics that inform the state of Polish payments today.

Narodowy Bank Polski shares statistics per payment system but doesn’t break down numbers by payment methods (e.g. credit transfers, direct debits, etc).

2022 Polish payment landscape

In 2022, the total number of non-cash payments in Poland, including all payment methods, increased to 10.9 billion, up 17.2% from 2021. As a reference, this number represents 9.5% of all non-cash payments in the eurozone the same year.

In value, Polish payment systems processed PLN 10.4 trillion of €2.3 trillion in 2022, up 21.5% from 2022.

Similar to other payment markets in Europe, card payments represented a majority of payments in Poland, with 68% in 2022. In value, Elixir, which processes non-instant credit transfers as well as direct debits, accounts for 75% of the value of payments processed in Poland in 2022.

Euro Elixir, Poland’s payment system enabling local banks to send and receive SEPA payments, had the highest value per payment, PLN 35,000 or EUR 8,099, almost ten times the average value per payment of Elixir.

While fast-growing, Express Elixir retail payments represented only 2% of payments in 2022, which can be explained by the wide adoption of BLIK payments, the mobile-based payment system that relies on Express Elixir to settle payments instantly.

BlueCash, an equivalent to BLIK, and KSR, a card payment settlement system, are negligible both in terms of number and value of payments.

Poland 2022Number of payments (billion)Share of number of paymentsValue of payments (PLN billion)Value of payments (EUR billion)Share of value of payments (%)Value per payment (PLN)
Euro Elixir00%1,666.0370.216%35,000
Express Elixir0.22%147.032.71%652


Polish payment methods trends

Similar to the eurozone payments overall, total Polish payments kept growing both in value and number of payments year after year for the past five years.

However, there are nuances in this overall growth, with some payment methods going through massive acceleration while others grow at a slower rate.

As discussed above, cards are still widely used for payments in Poland, but volumes grew relatively slowly at 15% per year in number and 13% per year in value from 2018 to 2022.

In comparison, instant bank payments Express Elixir grew by 49% per year in value during the same period and more than doubled in number between 2020 and 2022. The growth in instant payments is even more pronounced when looking at BLIK: it grew by 78% per year in number and 97% in value between 2018 and 2022. Its privately owned counterpart, BlueCash, appeared on the backfoot for the period.

Poland seems to have executed a winning strategy to gradually increase the adoption of instant bank payments – directly via Express Elixir or initiated via BLIK – against card payments. A strategy that the European Commission wants to reproduce across the eurozone with the recent adoption of the Instant Payment Regulation and the launch of EPI’s wero later in 2024.

20182019202020212022CAGR 2018-2022
Elixir (billion)
Elixir (PLN billion)5,2465,6956,0036,8047,84011%
BLIK (billion)
BLIK (PLN billion)921438413797%
Euro Elixir (billion)
Euro Elixir (PLN billion)7939387591,0531,66620%
Express Elixir (billion)
Express Elixir (PLN billion)3044669914749%
BlueCash (billion)
BlueCash (PLN billion)101310131816%
KSR (billion)
KSR (PLN billion)1816121415-5%
Cards (billion)
Cards (PLN billion)35441043649858813%


Take part in Polish payments growth by connecting to Elixir and Express Elixir

Poland is a dynamic and innovative payment market that represents a major opportunity for pan-European payment companies. Efficiently addressing it requires connecting with local schemes Elixir and Express Elixir. Even for eurozone-Poland cross-border payments, Euro Elixir payments remain expensive and non-instant.

Numeral provides the infrastructure for fintech companies to connect to their partner banks, access payment schemes and automate payments across Europe. Contact us to discuss your Polish market plans.

Not sure where to start?

Let’s talk about how we can work together to accelerate your payment flows. Get a demo of our platform, explore our pricing, or get started right away.

Contact us