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Overseas card spending jumps 18.6 pct in 2021 on strong won

All News 12:00 March 01, 2022

SEOUL, March 1 (Yonhap) -- South Koreans' overseas card spending swelled nearly 19 percent in 2021 amid a strong local currency against the U.S. dollar, central bank data showed Tuesday.

The amount of money spent overseas by South Koreans with cards, including credit and debit cards, came to US$12.23 billion last year, up 18.6 percent from a year earlier, according to the data from the Bank of Korea (BOK).

The 2021 tally represents a sharp turnaround from a 46.1 percent on-year tumble recorded a year earlier.

Last year's surge was attributed mainly to a jump in South Koreans' direct purchases from overseas online malls on the local currency's strength against the greenback, despite a drop in the number of overseas travelers.

South Koreans' overseas online direct buying shot up nearly 30 percent on-year to $4.49 billion last year.

The number of outbound travelers tumbled 71.4 percent on-year to 122,000 last year in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, according to the central bank.

Last year, the local currency changed hands at a daily average of 1,144.40 won to the U.S. dollar, up 3 percent from a year earlier.

Overseas card spending jumps 18.6 pct in 2021 on strong won - 1


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