A third of consumers believe cash will become obsolete by 2020

Consumers have demonstrated their lack of faith in the endurance of cash, with the latest payment gadgets ruling the roost, according to a study.

Businesses that don’t keep up with the latest payment gadgets are likely to struggle, with a quarter of UK consumers claiming to avoid shops that only take cash, according to a survey by Worldpay.

A third (30 per cent) of respondents say they only use cash if they absolutely have to.

It is a year on from the increase in the contactless payment limit and 37 per cent of shoppers told Worldpay they would like to see the ceiling rise again, allowing them to ‘tap and go’ on purchases over £30, rising to 45 per cent of respondents in London.

Unsurprisingly, the urge for frictionless shopping is even higher in the capital, where 33 per cent of Londoners use contactless cards once a day, more often than any other region across the UK.

Half of British shoppers have used contactless to pay for goods at least once and 40 per cent of respondents say they use it a few times a week.

Payment using smartphones

The arrival of Apple Pay and Android Pay has spurred two thirds (67 per cent) of 16-34 year olds to leave their wallets at home, instead choosing to pay with their smartphones.

And it’s not just the younger generation buying in to this movement; across all age groups, 54 per cent of consumers expect their smartphones to replace their card as the main method of payment within the next five years.

James Frost, chief marketing and commercial officer at Worldpay says, ‘The shift that we are seeing in terms of consumer preferences and what shoppers now expect from the high street is seismic and paying with cash is an inconvenience for many of today’s shoppers.

‘While online stores have tended to changing expectations and delivered simplicity and flexibility through technology, physical stores are at risk of falling behind. From contactless busses to Waitrose’s first cashless store, the growing popularity of tap and go is a trend that all retailers will need to embrace or risk losing relevance.’

Further reading on payments

Ben Lobel

Ben Lobel

Ben Lobel was the editor of SmallBusiness.co.uk from 2010 to 2018. He specialises in writing for start-up and scale-up companies in the areas of finance, marketing and HR.

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Cashless Payments

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