Today, the preferred way is to pay with plastic. It’s easy to see why. It’s way easier to swipe a card every time you head into the store than it is to drive through the ATM on your way. Even when you use a money transfer services, like Remitly, the transaction starts with digital financial information on your phone!
However, there are some good reasons why the recipient of a money transfer will pick up straight cash. Likewise, there are some good reasons for you to continue using cash too, even if plastic is easier.
It’s Universally Accepted
Figuring out who takes what form of payment can be difficult. Nearly every place will accept plastic of some kind, but they may not accept the kind of plastic you show up with. Not to mention, you have to deal with chip readers, scan and pay, and more that makes figuring out the best way to pay extremely confusing.
Cash is universally accepted. No matter where you go, you can bet they’ll accept cash. This is especially true if you find yourself at a garage sale or a farmer’s market.
It Forces You to Delay Purchases
Impulse buying can be a huge problem. It’s easy to be tempted. That’s why every checkout aisle is crammed with little purchases that can be added to your cart at the last minute!
One strategy is to delay impulse purchases by 30 days, but you don’t even have to do that if you’re paying with cash. When you get to the counter, you may discover that you don’t have the bills you need to make that impulse purchase.
When it comes to bigger purchases, having cash will help you save money because it will force you to delay that purchase. You may have to save up the money to buy it, which will make you think more carefully about whether you really want that designer handbag in the first place.
Cash Isn’t Traceable
When you think about people who worry about whether their payments are traceable, criminals are likely to come to mind. Well, everyone can benefit from using a form of payment that can’t be traced.
It’s surprisingly easy for hackers and criminals to get a hold of your personal information, which includes your payment info. It seems that every few months, there’s a serious breach in internet security where a store or association’s database was hacked and information was potentially stolen.
If you pay with cash and someone hacks into that store’s payment history, they won’t find your financial information. You can worry a lot less about a stranger draining your bank account because they got a hold of your bank account or credit card information from a seller.
You’ll Save More
Nearly all of us could stand to save a little bit more money. Whether we want to put more into a savings account for a down payment on a house or we need to ramp up our retirement savings, we could all find more ways to put a little more money away.
There are some really great ideas out there that include:
- Have zero-spend days
- Cut out coffee and gas station drinks
- Automate deposits into your savings account
These strategies can all be effective, but one of the best ways to save is to use cash! When you physically have to hand over the money, you’ll think twice about that impulse buy at the counter.
As you can guess, paying with cash is a great way to stick to a budget. A surprising side effect of sticking to a budget is that you’ll experience a lot less guilt.
You never have to feel guilty at the end of the month because you spent more than your budget allows. After all, once the cash is gone, it’s gone!
In addition, if you have a little extra left over at the end of the month, you can treat yourself guilt-free. Buy the fancy coffee you have deprived yourself of all month or hit up the sales at the local department store. You already know you paid your bills and put money into savings, so you can spend to your heart’s content!
There’s no doubt that swiping a plastic credit card is the easiest way to spend money, but that doesn’t mean it’s the best way. There’s still a place for cash in today’s world, especially when you consider all the benefits on this list!