- The UK may no longer use cash as currency by 2043
- However two-thirds (68%) of Brits would be scared to live in a cashless society
- Only 30% of the UK’s daily transactions are carried out by cash
- Nearly half (48%) of all cash transactions are for less than £5
New research by GalaCasino.com has revealed that the UK could become a cashless society by 2043 if consumer usage continues to decline at its current rate.
The number of cash transactions declined from 71% in 2004 to 53% in 2014, leading experts to predict a 19% drop over the following decade. This trend reflects both changing attitudes in consumers, and a shift in the marketplace as smaller businesses are able to afford card payment facilities thanks to companies such as iZettle and SumUp.
However, a shift towards a completely cashless society is likely to be a cause for concern among Brits, as the GalaCasino.com survey found over two-thirds (68%) find the idea of living in a cashless society troubling, with the top fears including:Fraud (61%)
- Over reliance on technology (45%)
- Lack of privacy (31%)
Despite worries, it seems the convenience of cashless payments outweigh our fears; only 30% of Brits use cash every day, and nearly half (48%) pay with cash less than once a week. A third (34%) of Brits even admit to actively avoiding businesses which don’t accept non-cash payments.
When it comes to paying without cash, chip and pin is still a firm favourite (45%), with contactless coming in second (30%). Surprisingly, only 1% would choose mobile pay as their go to method.
Cash tends to only be used for small transactions; almost half (48%) of cash payments are for a value of less than £5, while a further fifth (21%) are between £5 and £9. Only 12% of purchases over £20 are carried out by cash.
RicLeask, head of Casino at GalaCasino.com said: “There is no denying that contactless is convenient: a quick tap! And you’re on your way. However, I don’t think we’ll ever fully get rid of loose change – you don’t get good luck from picking up a bank card after all!”
Stephen Hart, founder and CEO of CardSwitcher, believes it is unlikely that we will ever get rid of cash completely: “The move from cash to cashless will follow a similar progression to the demise of cheques. Cheque use has plummeted and there are regular calls for them to be scrapped entirely. However this hasn’t happened because there are key groups who still use them.”