Will We Become A Cashless Society?

Feeling inspired by a convo I was having with @joeperris yesterday, our Question Of The Week is…?

Do you think the UK will/ should become a cashless society? :money_with_wings:

Not yet - it’d make it harder for our elderly or vulnerable to access services (mostly because they may not have access/can’t use smartphones).

What do you think @rebekah?

1 Like

I think less and less people are using cash, and I personally can’t remember the last time I needed to use cash in the UK?

But at the same time, so many people rely exclusively on cash to pay their bills, and lots of people use cash as a way to budget their money…

Like you mentioned above if everything went online it might open the elderly/ vulnerable up to more digital scams? Bu then would it reduce the amount of tax avoidance / over the counter robberies? :thinking:

1 Like

This might be very millennial of me but how would you even pay your bills with cash?

Haha, some people will have things like pay-as-you-go meters, which requires you to prepay for your energy!

We had one of these in our uni house, and you had to go to the shops to top it up every week :see_no_evil:

Or, there’s people who aren’t confident with setting up direct debits, who go to the Post Office to pay some of their bills!

1 Like

Wait, you can just go into the Post Office and pay any bill!?

Haha I don’t know about ANY bill, but yeah you can pay for lots of them! Magical place haha


1 Like

Tricky one as loads of kids and adults don’t have a bank account.

You could have a system where everyone in the country has a smart chip driven National Identity Card that can be multi functional and double up as a bank card and store loyalty card accounts all linked to your NIC number making it easy to switch banks, add/remove services if need be and can have companies develop apps for their services that can be linked to that ID card number, banks, loyalty cards, DVLA etc

Only problem is you’d still need to have people know how to use apps to make and receive payments and if you were a victim of identity theft someone could have your Tesco club card points as well as your money and there’s no way anyone is having my points :joy::joy::boxing_glove::boxing_glove:

We’re at least a decade away from a cashless society but i hardly use it…

Thinking outside the box there - love it haha!

So everyone would only need one card on them at all times? And when you went to pay for anything the card could automatically decide which of your accounts was best to use, based on loyalty perks/ cashback etc?! :joy:

Yea could be tricky if you had multiple accounts although the app or payment portal (like self scan in Tesco) could detect if you are tapping card to register points and then further on use it to pay. guess you could even add electricity and gas payg card functionality to it as well via the app store.

Who knows :grin::woman_shrugging:

1 Like

Hahah yesss who knows what will happen in the future :crystal_ball:

Yes and yes.

Cash will, eventually, be phased out. However it always remains legal tender and you can always go to the Bank of England to exchange it.

I can’t remember the last time I used cash, really. It’s so inconvenient - I start out with a thin slice of paper (or polymer) and before I know it, I’m suddenly carrying heavy metal coins that make my fingers smell, fall out all over the floor if I’m not careful, and for what?

Being able to just tap with my watch or phone is just so easy.


I can’t remember when I last used cash in the UK, but if I go on holiday I’ll always get £100 or so out before I travel.

Maybe that will change in years to come, but I think I’d feel really unprepared if I went away without any actual cash…?

It depends on the country - in Denmark for example they are already a largely cashless society. I think there are a few stragglers that annoy me, most commonly taxi drivers.

Ahh I’ve not been to Denmark - have you been?

Yeah it surprises me when some taxi drivers still don’t take card - especially with the amount of Uber like companies you’d think they’d want to give people the option to pay with card!

I went to Copenhagen a few years ago, it was lush! No issues using my Starling card.


Yesss this view just looks incredible :heart_eyes:

Adding to my (very long) list of places to travel!

Copenhagen is as stunning in person.

It feels really good to get to a self-checkout and just load all your annoying coins in but stop just before you’ve overpaid so you don’t get any change

A bit silly but I’d be nervous for the Government to have access to this much information so readily (althought they alreaady have this information if they looked hard enough)

Haha you’re right - it is weirdly satisfying to have exact change :joy:


Guess it depends on what government :slight_smile:

Some are on the ball and know everything already, others couldn’t organise a keg party in a frat house :grin::man_facepalming: