From coins to clicks: A handy guide to navigating a cashless society with confidence

Jul 26, 2023
While transitioning into a cashless society may present initial challenges it's a journey well worth taking. Source: Getty Images.

It would appear Australia is hurtling towards a cashless society after recent data indicated that the days of digging for coins in your pockets or fumbling through wallets may soon become a distant memory.

According to findings from the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA), more than a billion dollars worth of physical cash disappeared from circulation in the last financial year, and with people aged 65 and over five times more likely than those aged 18-29 to use cash during in-person transactions, this transition can not only be daunting but also perplexing.

However, with the right approach and support, you can fully embrace the benefits of a cashless society while maintaining your financial independence. In an effort to make this seemingly unavoidable transition easier, Starts at 60 explores how you can smoothly transition into this digital landscape while empowering you to navigate the cashless world with confidence.

Addressing concerns and misconceptions

In the midst of embracing the digital revolution and transitioning to a cashless society, it’s only natural to have some concerns about the process. As with any significant change, doubts and uncertainties can arise. However, by examining and then challenging these concerns we can be reassured that a smooth transition is possible.

CEO of Tribeca Financial Ryan Watson highlights that “the two key challenges centre around habits and technology”.

“With regard to financial habits, we have formed our relationship with money and how we use it over a lifetime,” he explains.

“Physically paying for things, i.e. handing over money is a generational construct, therefore to simply ‘tap and go’ is a fundamental change to the way seniors interact to purchase in their everyday lives.

“As for technology, this in itself contains a few challenges, from learning new ways to purchase, to the perceived and actual security risks with purchasing via technology. Change can often be a challenge, especially if you are used to doing things ‘one way’ across your lifetime.”

While it’s natural to have concerns about transitioning to a cashless society, it’s essential to consider the multitude of benefits that await those who embrace this digital revolution.

Embracing the benefits of a cashless transactions

Going cashless offers a number of advantages that can significantly enhance your day-to-day life. From heightened security and convenience to greater accessibility, the benefits are both practical and empowering.

Watson states that “the benefits of going ‘cashless’ tie back to the practicalities of it, i.e. no longer needing to visit a bank branch to withdraw or deposit money (with are only becoming more scarce), to the safety aspects of not having to carry around cash in your wallet or purse.”

Completing transactions from the comfort of our own home and the safety that comes with digital transactions certainly serve as enticing drawcards; however, there are also a myriad of other benefits that add to the appeal of transitioning to a cashless society.

  1. Enhanced security: Digital transactions offer increased security, reducing the risk of loss or theft associated with physical cash. Advanced encryption and authentication measures protect financial information, providing you with peace of mind.
  2. Convenience and efficiency: Cashless payments are quick and seamless, eliminating the need to search for exact change or count coins. With just a tap or swipe, you can complete transactions swiftly, saving both time and effort.
  3. Real-time tracking of expenses: Digital payment platforms provide real-time tracking of expenses, enabling you to monitor your spending easily.
  4. Contactless transactions: In a post-pandemic world, contactless payments have become a hygienic and safe alternative to handling physical money, reducing the risk of germ transmission during transactions.
  5. Reduced clutter: Going cashless means fewer coins and bills to carry, leading to a more organised and clutter-free wallet or purse.
  6. Simpler bill payments: Cashless transactions simplify bill payments, allowing seniors to set up recurring payments or make one-time transactions with ease.


Navigating the cashless transition with confidence

Embracing a cashless society comes with its fair share of concerns and challenges. However, armed with the right tips and advice, this transition can be a smooth and empowering journey.

From starting with familiar purchases and seeking support from loved ones, these valuable insights will pave the way for a seamless transition into the cashless world.

  1. Start with familiar transactions: Begin by using cashless payment methods for familiar transactions, such as grocery shopping or paying bills. This approach allows you to gain confidence with everyday purchases before venturing into more complex transactions.
  2. Educate yourself: Take advantage of online tutorials, guides, and workshops that explain the ins and outs of digital payment platforms. Familiarise yourself with the features, security measures, and terms of service to make informed decisions.
  3. Seek support from tech-savvy friends or family: If you encounter any difficulties during the transition, reach out to tech-savvy friends or family members for guidance and support. They can offer valuable insights and help troubleshoot any issues.
  4. Practice patience and perseverance: Transitioning to a cashless society may take time, so be patient with yourself as you adapt to new methods. Embrace the learning process and remember that practice makes perfect.

Watson stresses that “education is the key” to successfully making the transition.

“Make a time to visit your local bank branch and ask them to take you through how best to use their cashless services, i.e. internet banking, card tap and go, etc,” he suggests.

“From education will come understanding, and from understanding will come confidence in order to use your bank’s cashless services.”

While transitioning into a cashless society may present initial challenges it’s a journey well worth taking. With the right support, education, and age-friendly solutions, you can confidently adapt to the digital landscape while preserving your financial independence. Embracing a cashless society will not only streamline everyday transactions but also empower you to navigate the future with ease and renewed excitement.

IMPORTANT LEGAL INFO This article is of a general nature and FYI only, because it doesn’t take into account your financial or legal situation, objectives or needs. That means it’s not financial product or legal advice and shouldn’t be relied upon as if it is. Before making a financial or legal decision, you should work out if the info is appropriate for your situation and get independent, licensed financial services or legal advice.

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