Cash­less so­ci­ety mov­ing ever closer

Wangaratta Chronicle - North East Regional Extra - - NEWS -

CASH pay­ments are fast be­com­ing a thing of the past. New re­search shows that the ease and se­cu­rity of wav­ing a card, phone or even your wrist in­stead of car­ry­ing around cash is more pop­u­lar than ever. De­tailed re­search by Col­mar Brun­ton, com­mis­sioned for the Aus­tralian Tax­a­tion Of­fice (ATO), re­veals that only one in five Aus­tralians still pre­fer us­ing cash for pur­chases. ATO As­sis­tant Com­mis­sioner Matthew Bam­brick said “It’s clear that there’s been a cul­tural shift to­wards cash­less pay­ments across the board, even for smaller amounts. “The re­search shows that cash is only the pre­ferred pay­ment method for trans­ac­tions un­der $5, and for any­thing over $50, the vast ma­jor­ity of peo­ple want the ease and se­cu­rity of an elec­tronic pay­ment. “Where we once saw peo­ple walk into car deal­er­ships with cash in hand, cash has now been rel­e­gated to the morn­ing cof­fee”, Mr Bam­brick said. The trend to­wards cash­less pay­ments is par­tic­u­larly ev­i­dent among peo­ple un­der 35, who carry the least amount of cash. Those aged 18-24 are also half as likely to re­quest a dis­count for pay­ing in cash com­pared to the gen­eral pop­u­la­tion. Mr Bam­brick said “the move by the younger gen­er­a­tion away from seek­ing an ‘un­der the ta­ble’ dis­count is re­ally en­cour­ag­ing. It in­di­cates that a once com­mon prac­tice is now rare as peo­ple en­joy the ben­e­fits of be­ing cash free.” The re­search shows con­sumers are drawn by the con­ve­nience of cash­less pay­ments, which re­move the un­nec­es­sary step of with­draw­ing cash and car­ry­ing it around when mak­ing any trans­ac­tion. Tap and Go pay­ments have also been game chang­ing, bring­ing about faster trans­ac­tion times. Ad­di­tion­ally, cash­less pay­ments boast se­cu­rity ben­e­fits, by re­mov­ing the risks of car­ry­ing cash and pro­tect­ing con­sumer rights through eas­ier record keep­ing. Mr Bam­brick said “The busi­ness com­mu­nity knows what peo­ple want, and 86 per cent of busi­nesses agree that most cus­tomers ex­pect to be able to pay via elec­tronic means. “This re­search in­di­cates that the trend away from cash will only gather pace. This is more than a pass­ing fad. This is the way of the fu­ture. “Par­tic­u­larly with the de­cline in min­i­mum trans­ac­tion amounts, we are likely to see more and more peo­ple car­ry­ing lit­tle or no cash at all. Most busi­nesses al­ready know this and we ex­pect the rest will be there soon.”

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