The Financial Services Demand Side Survey for Vanuatu showed the median adult in Malampa must travel up to an hour to reach a bank branch.
The trip alone cost $US5.50, which is the highest figure across the island.
The survey was conducted last year by the Pacific Financial Inclusion Programme, and together with the Reserve Bank of Vanuatu, they are now introducing a new way to manage bank transactions and payments to Government departments.
Vanuatu banking looks to go digital https://t.co/MwVXg3knfF
— RNZ Pacific (@RNZPacific) July 24, 2017
Deputy Programme Manager Krishnan Narasimhan said having payment flows made digital would help cut down travel time and transaction costs.
“People from Vanuatu are either dealing with cash or cheque and it’s a struggle for most when it comes to handling cash,” he said.
“There is also the problem of going and standing in long queues in banks and then cashing the cheques.
“So when a customer who lives far away has to make a payment, they have to come to a few counters a week, so the use of digital channels will not only reduce the costs of transactions, but also improve security and more importantly it will save on travel time.”