Could the UK become a cashless society?

Could the UK become a cashless society?

Since the launch of contactless payments in 2016, the possibility of a UK cashless society has become more likely. The number of contactless transactions is increasing year on year, with almost 370 million contactless transactions made in February 2017 alone. In the same month, £3,343.9 million was spent using a contactless card, a huge increase of 153.6% on last year.

A third of consumers in the UK never carry any cash, with 75% of 16-24 year olds using their cards for payments under £5. These consumers rely on digital payment methods alongside their cards, such as mobile wallets such as Apple Pay. 3.4 billion smartphones will be compatible with the three major mobile wallets by the end of the year, with this expected to increase to 5.3 billion by 2021.

Other countries have adopted a cashless society and are thriving; in 2015 only 2% of all payments in Sweden were made using cash, with predictions stating that this could drop to 0.5% in the next three years. Over half of Swedish banks no longer keep cash on site, and many banks no longer have ATM machines.

The UK’s reduced reliance on cash has been demonstrated in the fact that almost half of UK consumers still haven’t seen a new one pound coin. The coin was released over a month ago, and can still be rather difficult to find, showing how cash is being used less for transactions. It isn’t only coins that are being used less frequently, ATM use across the UK is also declining.

We recently covered how small business owners could boost their profits by up to £23,000 per year by taking card payments, a figure that will inevitably grow as the UK moves towards a cashless society. This means that it is more important than ever for independent business owners to take card payments.

To discover how your business could benefit by switching to Handepay, get in touch with one of our friendly advisors today.