What joys will we lose by becoming a cashless society?

What joys will we lose by becoming a cashless society? Will the benefits outweigh these losses? The benefits include for example: better spending records, easy to make payments (online and contactless), quick and easy international currency, transferring cash to children for school meals via a smart card without them having to carry cash.

Do some of these benefits demand new skills of us? Using physical cash makes overspending difficult, so does the ease of making payments also present a temptation to spend over budget? Could using a separate digital card loaded only with a set weekly budget from your main account help avoid this temptation?

Have the risks of digital cash been weighed up, so we can prevent/reduce the impact of these? By being cashless it will be impossible to drop/lose/misplace actual cash, though it will be possible to lose a cash card. This means that digital security is very important to reduce the chance of loss by hackers, since they may be able to access all the cash you own, not just what would otherwise have been in your wallet or pocket. Security such as PIN numbers should never be shared and unique
passwords for any banking methods should be used. Using the same password for all apps increases the chance of bank details being hacked.

Other risks that we have no control over include technical glitches and internet access! Is this a risk we should be prepared to live with?

Will the next generation know the anticipation of a windfall by counting up a piggy bank’s contents of unseen savings from depositing loose change, or targeted coins such as £2. Presumably they will also miss out on the disappointment if these savings are less than expected! Digital saving is straightforward and transparent, so developing willpower to know it’s there and not dip in will be crucial!

Will teaching children how to count and handle money prove tricky without the concept of coins?

Could some of the benefits of being cashless also mean the joys of finding a few coins/pounds, if you’re lucky, underneath the sofa cushions a thing of the past? What about the glee of finding a fiver in a jacket that hasn’t been worn for a while? How will a Grandpa slip an extra fiver to a visiting teenage grandchild? How will buskers cope? What about the tooth fairy………………………?

Will we ever know?

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