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With increased use of credit and debit cards all over the world, the idea of a cashless society seems little in question. We have witnessed the progress from cash only to writing out cheque, to bank cards, ATMs and more recently ‘tap and go’ and mobile pay. Today, cash is playing a less important role in the society and may as well become obsolete. But are we ready for this? What do the stats say?
A recent ING International survey stated that one in four Aussies would be willing to live in a cashless society. About 34% of the section in Europe and 38% from that of America wanted to see world as a cashless society. Also, 50% of the respondents from Europe already prefer using cards over cash.
The Milestones Report from the Australian Payments Network found that there has been a 22% decline in the cash withdrawals from ATMs between 2011 and 2016. Digital payments grew, with a 37% increase in the direct entry (e.g. direct debits) transactions from 2011 to 2016, and that of 72% in the card transactions over the same period of time.
Canada is not leaving behind either. A large number of people in Canada prefer using credit or debit cards over cash. Canada is also one of the leading nations to adopt new payment technologies, such as, PayPal, online transactions, and mobile banks etc.
Stats speak louder
World has advanced far on the road to a cashless society. The Milestones Report found that most of the countries are just on the verge of being deemed as cashless economies, with only 15% of transactions in cash. Many museums prohibit cash payments for admission and you can even make donations to charities without cash. Many banks no longer accept or dispense cash in their branches. This has led to an increase in the launch and availability of payment apps. Bill and coin transactions represent only 2 percent of commercial activity.
Why is a cashless society desirable?
Today, banks and businesses prefer electronic payments because they make robberies almost impossible. Countries like USA, UK and more, prove that not only is it possible to live cash-free, but also attractive and potentially beneficial.
Since electronic records are traceable, any transaction would be difficult to hide from tax collector, leading to a better economy and future. A cashless society will reduce black marketing significantly as well. Both France and Spain have passed the laws that limit cash transactions of $1,080 and 1,000 Euros respectively. Any cash purchase beyond this is completely illegal.
Privacy for convenience?
A major concern with a cashless society is the loss of privacy. Online transactions are potentially accessible and can be traced and a transaction history can reveal a lot about you. Places where you have used your credit card, places where you have been and a list of everything you bought can create a detailed picture of who you are communicating with and what you are doing at all times.
Despite concerns, people increasingly prefer credit cards to cash. We already pay our bills online, we prefer paying for Uber rides or air tickets via online banks or cards. Also, it has been 18 years since the World’s first cashless payment method, PayPal was introduced.
So, here is the deal! Even today, a great number of people in a country like India still do not prefer going for cashless transactions. They rather withdraw cash from the banks to make their payments, pay their bills and so on. However, the fact is that the technology is here to ensure ease and security in our lives.
Here are a few reasons why we would suggest people in India to opt for cashless transactions: You can pay your utility bills while lying in your couch, you can transfer money to your loved ones borders away without having to walk all the way to bank, you do not have to carry a wallet full of cash to a grocery store, you can always stay updated about your current balance on a real time basis.
Also, every cashless transaction is more detailed and traceable. When you have cash at hand, at times you don’t even realize that you are buying something which is not actually required. Also, the cashless transactions keeps you updated about every single payment made which makes it more reliable and secure than cash transactions.