How much cash, how many cards?

Zentiger at NZ Conservative notes people using EFTPOS to pay tiny amounts and wonders how much cash people carry.

I was doing a door to door collection for Plunket a couple of years ago and one very apologetic woman, whom I knew, said she had absolutely no cash in the house.

This surprised me because I have a money box on the laundry window sill for the coins which end up in the wahsing machine, and another in the bedroom for those which fall on the floor. So even when my wallet is cashless I have change in the house and I always have some coins and maybe a small note in the car for emergencies.

But the need for cash certainly isn’t as great as it was before we had EFTPOS and hole-in-the-wall banking. Way back then you had to get your money from banks and they closed at 3pm on Friday and didn’t open until 10am on Monday.

As the amount of cash people have on hand has fallen the number of cards we carry has risen.

This came up in discussion with friends recently so we all did a count – the winner had 32 cards in his wallet including EFTPOS, credit, swipe, membership and loyalty cards and all but a couple were current and, he said, necessary.

No doubt there are security and privacy issues, but it would be much easier if we could programme one card with all the information we needed.

Either that, or just put a bar code on our foreheads 🙂

4 Responses to How much cash, how many cards?

  1. ZenTiger says:

    My kids take pocket money only in cash. So they are always good for a loan if something cash based comes up 🙂

    I’ve simplified my life down to a single personal credit card with a low limit (to help ensure I can pay it off every month) and a transaction account linked to my credit card to let me use EFTPOS.

    EFTPOS is mainly used for small amounts of money, and for payment to any small business (so they dont lose on the credit card fees). Big chains get my credit card unless they offer discount for cash.

    Plus I have Flybuys, AA, a business account, frequent flyer cards (2) and a pile of coffee cards. Generally I hate loyalty cards though, especially the 10 click type, as I never have them when I need them. It becomes so annoying buying something from a place where I don’t have the loyalty card with me, I’ll go shop elsewhere. There’s some good money in it for retailers that work out a simpler way to reward consumer loyalty.

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  2. Colin Lucas says:

    Three credit cards of assorted varieties, and one eftpos with the usual rubbish other cards including a gun licence which makes me look like mohammed the terrorist.
    Cash only makes a fleeting apperance in my world except for Rotary meetings when it is useful to pay fines or when i don’t want to leave an electronic trail when out with the lads!.

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  3. rayinnz says:

    A cash card, visa, CRT, Flybuys, and a $50 Whitcoulls giftcard which hasn’t got much more time left on it

    The CRT gets 99% of my spending

    Homepaddock knows what that is as no doubt she uses one as well but it is a Combined Rural Traders card that allows us rural types to buy just about everything (at a discount) as long as we pay at the end of the month

    I still carry cash for my personal spending,’cause that is what I always have done but $200 last a loong time

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  4. pmofnz says:

    Every thing on Mastercard or Farmlands card. Pay the lot off with 2x transactions per month.

    Always ask for discount for cash though. No discount, slap it on the Mastercard – the trader’s loss with their merchant premiums.

    Refuse to use eftpos – stuff the ripoff charges per transaction.

    Loyalty cards are a waste of time.

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