Why You Should Go Cashless

American Express Cashless Challenge

In my early days I worked as a retail sales assistant and spent an incredible amount of time with a handful of girls as we bonded over our mutual hatred of crazy and/or unreasonable customers and how much we hated folding clothes. I was confronted o

ne afternoon with the discovery that someone had been stealing cash from my wallet and what was worse was that it wasn’t the first time.

 

As someone who has previously been a victim of theft, I am incredibly wary when it comes to carrying large amounts of cash and very rarely will you find me with more than $50 in my wallet. I’ve always opted to use my credit cards and saved the cash for situations where plastic simply wasn’t an option.

 

I’ve been a loyal American Express customer for almost a decade now and have not one, but two cards with them. Throughout the years I’vemeticulously navigated my way through establishments I’ve been frequenting and discovered that more and more places were accepting more than just the usual suspects of Visa and Mastercard (hoorah). Many people (including my partner) don’t like to have credit cards as they’ve been brought up with the habit of not spending money that you don’t already have. I’ve always had a different view in that making cash purchases doesn’t give you additional rewards such as accumulating points that can later be used for credit and vouchers. Even when I’ve had the cash right in front of me to pay for purchases, big or small, I’m still inclined to put it on my card. As a creature of habit, I’ve been with the same nail salon since I was 20 and what started as an affair that relied solely on having the cash on hand for each visit, has now evolved into being a cashless relationship.

 

It makes sense in my head to move towards a cashless society for a number of reasons:

 

  1. It’s convenient – you can ditch the ATM lines or the hassle of finding an ATM belonging to your bank to avoid transaction fees whilst also keeping your wallet free of jingling coins and grimy cash that’s been around the country more times than you can count.
  2. There are benefits – including the points you earn from each transaction. Many credit cards will come with a points scheme that will reward you and I’ve found myself using my American Express even if I could have paid cash to accrue my points.
  3. Keeping to budgets – I’ve often found myself forgetting exactly where I spent my cash because I haphazardly throw away receipts or just don’t take them period. Having electronic records telling you exactly where your money is going makes it incredibly easy to budget when the time comes and the monthly reminder of how much you’ve spent when your bill comes through
  4. Less risk when travelling – as someone who has been travelling for years now, I’ve always felt safer bringing credit cards with me than wads of cash. If you’re robbed, your cash is gone forever but you can easily block thieves from using your credit cards remotely.

 

There are of course still places that still haven’t gotten with the times and still don’t accept American Express so I’ve chosen to take on the challenge of going completely cashless for the week. There’s a common misconception of how widespread acceptance is for American Express, but after a week of using nothing but a combination of my plastic and Apply Pay, only a few of the places that I frequent didn’t accept it.

The Grounds of Alexandria, Kinokuniya

 

So here are the places I went to throughout the week that accepted my shiny platinum card:

 

  • Grill’d Burgers
  • Kinokuniya Bookstore
  • Coles
  • John Smith Café
  • Newsagencies
  • Hansen & Gretel
  • Priceline
  • Officeworks
  • Ruby Room Nail Salon
  • Riots Craft Store

 

Not all places were tap friendly for me to use Apple Pay, but it wasn’t difficult for me to survive the week with no cash. Most large supermarkets like Coles had no issue accepting the tap and go function but some smaller stores still require you to insert the chip. By lowering fees for smaller businesses, it’s encouraged even the café I frequent most during my working weeks, John Smith to accept my favourite method of payment.

 

Check out my v-log for the week below and don’t forget to subscribe

 

 

Have you tried going cashless?

This post has been created in collaboration with American Express.

Helen

Helen Chik is a Sydney based fashion, beauty, travel and lifestyle digital content creator and influencer sharing everything from unique style to her adventures around the world through her rainbow tinted lenses.

  • Christine

    I am totally with you. I barely carry $20 in my wallet for just emergency reasons and I use my credit card whenever I can. Not only does my American Express allow me to earn points, they have a great fraud program and always make sure to check with strange charges. The only hassle like you said is that sometimes American Express isn’t accepted as Visa or Mastercard and usually this is outside of the US (when I went to Europe recently about half the places didn’t accept American Express). But whenever I pay for anything, I always swipe my Amex first. xoxo, Christine
    http://dailykongfidence.com/

  • @queenhorsfall

    I actually just got my platinum card from Amex and can’t wait to use priority pass at airports. Normally I don’t carry cash, but past few weeks I decided to get money and go shopping and in few hours got robbed for $2000. I wish it was $50. From now on, I will never carry cash with me lol. The only sucks, Amex not accepted in many countries.

  • Britta Dobriner

    I am with you!
    I almost never have any cash on me and always use my card.
    It is so much safer and you don’t have to worry about your cash being stolen like yours did!
    I would love to try American Express but don’t think I can get one here!
    I love that you can save up points to use for vouchers etc! So cool!
    Xo
    Britta

  • Hey Sweetie,
    Hows you?
    Definitely agree with you!
    I always use Credit Card as well and for me this is the safest way. Thank for Good I never got robbed but Some of my friends yes.
    American Express is really cool!
    Really nice system and has so many advantages;)
    Love Kisses
    Happy Sunday
    Open Kloset By Karina

  • jacqueline

    I am definitely with you because I never ever ever carry cash. It’s probably a bad thing? I don’t know. I feel like if I have it then I lose it and then I have to deal with the change or keeping track of how much I spent. Using a card is SO much easier. I have been thinking about getting an AMEX for a long time but I’m not sure I currently need it.

  • I am asian so for the longest time, I’ve been using cash (like most asians do) lol. But I completely agree that cashless is sometimes more convenient and efficient. I have American Express Gold Rewards card and it is one of the best especially when you travel a lot, their points accumulate so quickly and I love that when I travel, it has great fraud protection.

    xo Sheree
    PoshClassyMom.com

  • Tandya

    I can definitely agree to this! I honestly never carry cash with me! Thinking back to my high school self, I always used my credit cards. It was always so inconvenient going to an ATM to take cash out, and when I have a lot of cash in my wallet I am more inclined to spend it! As I have gotten older, my main main credit cards are also American Express. I find that most places do accept them now, which is great, and they have the best rewards!

    Thanks for sharing!
    XO
    Tandya
    http://www.simplytandya.com

  • Jill Wright

    I used to work in retail too, back in the day! I was soooo bad! Ha, ha. I have no patience or a very short attention span, so I think that may have been why. Anyway, I too had money stolen from my wallet & then one day the whole thing – cards and all. I love the idea of Apple Pay! I never have cash – I’m that person who taps for a $4 coffee… Lol. Cashless all the way!

    Thanks for sharing your Cashless week!

    J. x

  • I couldn’t agree more. I rarely carry cash in my wallet. Everytime we go to a restaurant or the supermarket my kids usually ask me for some cash to buy candy or play the claw machines. I often find myself without any cash. I really never carry any bills unless we’re going to a place I know won’t accept credit cards. I also feel like it’s much easier to carry large amounts in a card instead of carrying actual bills wherever you go. I personally am a Visa customer and have been for a while and I really like the way it all works. I find that most places accept them and payments go through very smoothly so I love the way it has helped me and my family. Thanks for sharing!

    xoxo, Vanessa

    http://thefashionstatement.net

  • Amanda N Dustin Smith

    What a lovely post Helen. I don’t personally have an American Express but do find much benefit to only use cards as much as possible and especially while traveling. My husband is very ‘old school’ on this subject as well so our solution for that is to set aside the cash we know we will likely spend on our credit cards though the week and the turn around and take that cash to pay it off immediately. That way we are reaping the benefits of our credit-card and many times making money, while still being held accountable for our purchases. This is especially useful when we book for flights and hotel stays! I normally only have 20 or so in my wallet or car! I also, can’t stand the bulkiness of carrying around a thick wallet all the time. I love to have a simple card holder instead! What a wonderful way to educate through this post and I must look into American Express and their card benefits!

    Manda | http://EvocativelyChosen.com

  • I couldn’t agree more, this is just so true. I’m always trying to keep my money save on my credit card and rarely use cash. To be honest, sometimes I have less than $20 with me, haha. But in Germany there are a lot of places where just do not accept cards (like bakeries or small stores). But at least, you will keep money safe for good and won’t spend it for something useless. That really helps to stay on budget and control all the expenses.

    Cheers, Eliza | http://www.fashion-confession.com

  • I never carry a lot of cash but I always have some on hand. I’m just old school that way. There are so many places (like street vendors) that are cash only in NYC that I’m not sure I can do it. But I do use my Amex for small purchases when I can – I actually prefer it. And you can’t beat all the points!
    XO
    http://www.lehoarder.com/

  • Melbourneyum

    I loved your video it was so much fun and you did a really great job.
    I love all the points that you make about going cashless.
    And I agree they are valid but I’m not a big fan of a cashless society.
    Plus I don’t have any credit cards anymore since my 20’s when I shopped with disregard for responsibilitys
    I now like to only spend what I have , and credit cards are too much of a temptation,I do think for travel they are a necessary convince and debit cards are also great,
    If I was going to go the card route the American Express would be it.
    Xo
    Natalia k

  • Natalie Aubele

    I never carry cash really – I spend more spontaneously if I do !🤦🏼‍♀️

  • Candace

    I usually only keep $5 in my wallet, so I am a huge cashless spender haha. Hopefully there’s never an emergency because I probably will never have cash! For one, if I have it in my wallet, it will be spent a lot quicker than my card will be swiped. I have never had an AMEX card, but I just love all the benefits they come with! I love how more places are accepting it now.

    http://www.thebeautybeau.com/

  • Marcy Yu

    I have to agree babe I never carry cash I pay everything with credit card. If someone want to robbed me they totally will fail lol!! I also think lines are faster when u paid on credit card so easy specially when you are travelling is better just carry credit cards. Before my flight to South Africa I had to stop in NY airport and its amazing how the airport shops have this credit card only system everywhere its amazing, convenient and fast. Literally so easy to paid like you show us in your video.

    xoxo
    Marcy

  • Cammeo

    I went cashless a while back after I left my purse somewhere and got $500 stolen out of it when we were moving cross country – not fun and needless to say I prefer card 😉

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