Sweden En Route To Become First Cashless Country
Sweden is quickly moving towards a cashless economy. Today, cash payments only represent 3% of all transactions and, according to Aljazeera, this number is about to decrease further with the rise of contactless payments.
The country is known for being pioneer when it comes to payment technology – Swedes have been using Internet banking for over twenty years and have a very high rate of mobile banking and payments.
Swedes say cash is reserved for very small purchases of for over 65s, who still struggle with new payment technologies. Some businesses are now accepting cards and mobile payments as their only methods of payment and, even the Church has adopted cashless payments with several card readers installed in churches.
The country’s banks have followed on consumers’ preferences and are seeking to eliminate cash from most of their branches. Dasnke Bank says the demands for cash-based services has decreased, prompting the decision to go cashless at their bank. Banks also state security as a main driver of the disappearance of cash. Speaking to CBS, the Swedish Bankers’ Association talks about the increased security for both clients and staff when cash is removed. Other experts also told CBS about the decrease of shadow economies which usually rely on cash for their activities.
However, not all Swedes are riding the cashless wave and over 65s are feeling marginalized, finding it hard to adapt to non-cash alternatives. But, despite the older population’s reticence towards cashless payments, Sweden could be paving the way for a cashless Europe.
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