Copenhagen – A lettuce at the vegetable stall, a sausage at the sausage stall, a coffee-to-go in the coffee shop – and pay everything with the card? In Denmark, Sweden and Norway, this has long been part of everyday life.
The countries of Denmark and Sweden are even considered „European champions“. According to statistics from the European Central Bank, Danes pay only 23 percent of their purchases in cash. The Swedes only use 18 percent of their purchases for coins or bills.
The Europe-wide average is 79 percent. The Swedish Riksbank also assumes that the number will fall to 0.5 percent by 2020. The reason: More and more businesses refuse to accept cash at all. Professor Peter Öhman from the University of Sundsvall (Sweden): „Maybe there will be no cash soon. It can go very fast. “
▶ ︎ The trend is not to be missed, and Sweden could – if it goes on – be the first country in the world to have no coins and bills left.
The development has also led in Sweden and Denmark that there are hardly any ATMs or bank branches with cash registers. Tourists in Denmark and Sweden often find it very difficult to withdraw cash. Only at the airports and at the station one can assume with certainty that one will find a machine.
No cash – less bacteria?
The Scandinavians seem to have few problems with their cashless lives, and many find it hard to stock up on cash when traveling to cash-loving countries.
The Danish economist Mia Olsen has listed the benefits in a research project.