Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Does a cashless society benefit everyone?
Cash, plastic or mobile? Coins and banknotes are issued by the central bank of a country. So, there usually one currency in a country. Plastic cards, such as credit cards or debit cards are issued by card issuers like banks under certain financial services bands, such as Visa or Mastercard. There usually are a few or more brands that dominate each market. Mobile payments are usually done by smartphones via mobile payment service providers, such as Apple Pay, WeChat Pay or Alipay. While cash can be handed directly from one to another, card or mobile payment goes through electric transactions. It is convenient, efficient and safe if both the payer and receiver are in the same transaction loop. However, if you don’t have access to those services, or if the receiver is reluctant or unable to accept cash, how do you make a payment for a cup of coffee or a ticket for a bus ride?
Such problem is arising in Sweden where cash payment is discouraged and has become unpopular among retail stores and shops. Plastic is now the popular and standard payment method in the Scandinavian country. In China, mobile payment is becoming the de facto payment practice in shops, restaurants and even for tax payment.
It seems that you may need to download a local mobile payment platform when you visit another country instead of stopping by a currency exchange counter.
But who will enjoy the benefit the most, and who will suffer inconvenience the most?
Enjoy reading the article and think which your preferred payment method is.