I rarely carry around cash with me these days. Coins are stuck in a pot somewhere and I can’t remember the last time I went to an ATM. Everything I pay for I pay either by card or on the net. Simple. If I want to give some money to a friend, we have a money-transferring system in Sweden, called Swish and that’s all done on you phone.
In fact according to this article,
Sweden is closer than any other country on Earth towards the goal of cashlessness
But that may not be such a good thing. Writing in The Guardian, Dominic Frisby argues that a cashless society has all sorts of problems.
There is a problem of power – a cashless society hands more power to banks and that may not be a wise move.
There’s a problem of privacy – in a cashless society someone knows what you do with your money. Not all governments or banks are equally trustworthy with your data.
There’s a problem of progress. A cashless system requires people to have bank accounts & a fixed address and income. Cash allowed the poor to buy mobile phones and start doing business.
However there are risks with both but most of us tend to make decisions based on convenience and for me, in Sweden, cash is often inconvenient.
What that means is, that often I have no money to give to those who beg and that I can imagine a future where the beggar will have a sign with their Swish number, asking me to send them money via their phone.