Social Vouchers: Efficient tools to support social policies

Social Vouchers, whether paper or digital, are social benefits attributed to workers collectively by their employers, public or private, carrying a right to access specific goods or services that improve their working conditions and facilitate their work-life balance (such as access to food, culture, transportation, childcare, holidays…).

Such goods or services are accessible within a dedicated network of merchants and providers which is built through a contract-based relation with each merchant/provider by companies issuing social vouchers and ensuring their proper efficiency, notably by avoiding their conversion into cash.

Social vouchers, usually supported by a public policy and sustained by a national tax and/or social framework, enhance a virtuous social and economic model while stimulating local and national economy to meet a dedicated social purpose.

Public Authorities can also adapt social vouchers to distribute welfare to their citizens as an alternative to allowances in cash or in kind.

Social vouchers have been developed in 40 countries (19 EU Member States) over the last 50 years to facilitate the implementation of social policies and meet the needs of employers, employees, citizens, as well as public authorities.

40 countries – 100 Million users

Social vouchers caracteristics

Instruments valid only in a single State provided at the request of an undertaking or a public sector entity and regulated by a national or regional public authority for specific social or tax purposes to acquire specific goods or services from suppliers having a commercial agreement with the issuer. *

    instruments valid only in a single State

    regulated by a specific social or tax framework intended to implement a social policy

    provided on request of an enterprise or a public entity

    carrying a right for an individual to receive goods or services

    from suppliers having a commercial agreement with the issuer

  3. NO
    which cannot be exchanged for money

* Directive (EU) 2015/2366 on payment services in the internal market, article 3k(iii): social vouchers pr esent a number of characteristics that differentiate them from payment services or E-money.

Social vouchers:

Tools to implement public policies

Food and meal vouchers:

A social tool with positive economic impacts

Eco vouchers:

a social tool to incentivize sustainable consumption