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The visualization uses data from “The Way We Pay“, a report published by Payments Council of the UK depicting the decline in the use of cash over the past decade. The number of cash transactions in the last ten years tell their own story. According to the Payments Council statistics, in 1999 three-quarters of all transactions were carried out using cash (73 percent), compared to 59 percent in 2009. The Council suggests that by 2018 less than half of all transactions will be paid by cash.
Why the sudden shift? The habitual use of the credit card to pay for their purchases, makes people feel safer carrying smaller amounts of money as well as the added benefit of accumulating points for free flights, accommodation and other perks. Those who prefer cash as a mode of payment, avoid high interest rates, and have the opportunity to barter in ways that waving a credit card doesn’t allow.