Top 6 Cashless Countries as of 2016

Even though some governments are looking to end cash all together in their respective countries, the task at hand is difficult to tackle. As it turns out, there are quite a few countries where cash is no longer the dominant form of exchanging value. This list doesn’t include India, as the war on cash in that country has been documented thoroughly all over the world in the past few months.

#6 Belgium

Living in Belgium, it is hardly surprising to see cash still being somewhat of a preferred payment method. Until a few years ago, most “convenience” stores did not even accept credit card payments. Belgium is slightly behind the rest of Europe in this regard, but payment cards are becoming far more common as of late.  In 2016, 56% of all transactions were cashless, and that number will continue to grow over time. 

#5 Canada

Perhaps one of the biggest surprises on this list is Canada. Then again, even people not living in the country must have noticed digital payments are making quite a significant impact on the economy as of late. It will take some time to get rid of cash altogether in the country, though, but things are looking quite progressive so far.

#4 Sweden

In Sweden, payments are made somewhat differently from the rest of the world. Even though cashless usage is the same as France – 59% as of 2016 – the general population likes cash payments as well. Sweden may become one of the first European countries to go cashless before 2020.

#3 France

Buying your average baguette in France will mostly be done using a cashless method, as making small purchases with Euro bills and coins can be cumbersome. France would like nothing more than to get rid of cash altogether by 2020. Right now nearly six in ten transactions are done in a cashless manner, and that number will continue to increase quickly over the next few years.

#2 The Netherlands

Western European countries are often pictured as locations where payment cards are not all that common. That is not the case, as the Netherlands see 60% of the yearly transactions take place in a digital fashion. That number surprises a lot of people, even though it is only normal. Every retailer in the Netherlands accepts cash payments, yet payment card terminals are becoming far more common as well.

#1 Singapore

Singapore is one of those regions that can prove to be quite intriguing to keep an eye on. Unlike what most people may believe, Singapore is no longer a cash-dominated economy, as over 60% of all yearly transactions are cashless. Even though Singapore’s “advanced status” regarding finance is certainly helping to facilitate this change. Singapore may become the first region to reach 70% or more by 2018.

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