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Are we on the brink of a cashless society?

Visa card (©Nathan Dumlao)

Visa card (©Nathan Dumlao)

The increase of online payment options, being able to make card payments with our phones and many places opting to go cashless show just how close we are to seeing true revolution in our society. The digital payments sector is one that has been growing for some time now but is beginning to now show the general population exactly how useful it could be to our futures.

More places are adopting revolutionary methods of digital payment and more places are ditching cash for good. Could we see a move towards a wholly cashless society?

The online payment system market size is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 12 percent between 2019 and 2025, showing that the industry is just beginning its revolution with how we look at financial systems. In October 2019, the United Arab Emirates announced that it was very close to being a fully cashless society.

Some suggest that a cashless society, in Britain for instance, could lead to a refueling of the economy as without cash, below zero interest rates would be impossible. Sainsbury’s have trialed a cashless society via one store, which involves scanning items and having the total deducted from Apple or Samsung Pay as you leave.

The move aims to speed up the time it would take to complete a shop and markets itself at busy people. The ability to then check how much has been spent with apps and various other banking software, such as the digital bank Monzo, who track each payment and provide a graphical representation of what you have spent your money on, smacks of the future of payments.

The future of payments does not just have to come from using card payments for the bus or train. It also refers to ways in which modern methods of payment are growing.

These include alternative forms of online payment, including various e-wallets, which have grown popular across the internet. You can play bingo online at Lucky Pants Bingo and have a range of online payment options for deposits and withdrawals, including Neteller and Paysafecard, as well as the standard PayPal, Visa and Mastercard.

Moreover, Paysafecard can be used to redeem as cash on Spotify, PeoplePerHour and a range of dating sites. Some sellers on eBay accept Skrill as a method of payment.

The fact that so many different payment options are being normalized shows how close we are to not only getting rid of cash but also to changing the way in which we look at methods of digital payments. A cashless society seems like futuristic talk, but it is actually more common than people expect.

Most people opt for contactless payments, which is a refining of the card payment that grew steadily popular. As contactless is faster and more streamlined than cash payments, most people opt for it when they handle their finances.

There will never be a fully cashless society. Car boot sales and farmer’s markets are unlikely to accept card payments while street buskers would find themselves out of a profession if we stopped having cash to tip them with.

But we could see cashless society in ways in which things could be sped up for the majority of people. Learn more about physical money becoming obsolete here:

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