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 one 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.
Why Go Cashless
It makes sense in my head to move towards a cashless society for a number of reasons:
- 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.
- 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.
- 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
- 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.
So here are the places I went to throughout the week that accepted my shiny platinum card:
- Grill’d Burgers
- Kinokuniya Bookstore
- John Smith Café
- Hansen & Gretel
- 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.
This post has been created in collaboration with American Express.