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Cash to transmit values

Categories : Cash connects people, Cash is a social network
January 31, 2017
Tags : Banknote/Note, Budget control, Public good, Universality, User-friendly
Anchored in our deepest cultural traditions, cash plays an important social role in our societies.
Communication Team / Equipo de Comunicación

Digital payments are becoming ever more popular and widespread across the developed countries, but could they really replace cash? Nothing could be less certain. Indeed, banknotes and coins convey numerous values that would disappear in a cashless society.

First, cash plays an important social role. Paying with real money involves going out, walking into a store and talking to people, at least to the cashier. Furthermore, cash is part of traditions. Village feasts or bake sales completely rely on paper money and would lose their charm if everybody was paying with tap and go cards. Besides, it would be impossible to make spontaneous gifts in a fully digitalised system, for example to help a tourist who does not have the change to pay his bus fare.

Moreover, cash provides a unique insight into a country’s culture. Indeed, banknotes and coins usually feature key figures of the country’s history and cultural landmarks, something that we will most probably never see on a bank card. In addition, coins serve many other purposes, the most famous being the heads or tails or throwing a coin in a fountain for good luck.

Finally, various studies have demonstrated that when paying with banknotes, people are more aware of the real value of money. Electronic transactions are certainly time savers, but not enough to scrap the social value of cash.

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