We love cash. Unlike credit cards, if you find cash on the ground, you can keep it. Paying in cash is convenient. It is easy to count out. Cash is great for splitting bills. We love cash, but we do not love how germy it is. Which begs the question, can it make us sick during a pandemic?
Cash is great, but it is also disgusting. Think of all the places a dollar bill could have been. Bills usually stay in circulation for 5 – 15 years. Cash can get really gross and carry a lot of germs in that time. Cash is known to carry E. coli, Salmonella, and other types of bacteria. A lot of people will likely interact with a dollar bill before it is taken out of circulation. During a pandemic, that means we take a chance every time we handle cash. Who held it before us? Were any of the other people sick?
Just because there are microbes on a surface does not mean that they will make us sick. There are plenty of harmless microbes. One researcher even mentions that money has not been the main spreader of an infection. Today’s issue though, is that COVID-19 is unique. This virus is incredibly contagious. Whereas the cold and flu only live on surfaces for less than 10 hours, COVID 19 is known to live on surfaces for up to 5 days! Researchers have come up with different conclusions to this question about cash. Ultimately though, some places are playing it safe.
Rather than wait for researchers to agree, some people are making their own decisions. To these countries and stores, they would rather be safe than sorry. They do not want to put their team or shoppers at risk. Some might call their actions drastic. To them, they are just doing what is necessary.
Some countries are taking the cash threat seriously. South Korea is taking all of its cash out of circulation for two weeks. They plan to take the cash and either disinfect it or burn it. The Paris Louvre has banned the use of cash.
There are others banning cash besides distant countries. Restaurants and shops in the US are banning cash too. A popular Seattle drive-in chain stopped accepting cash during the Coronavirus outbreak. Dick’s Drive-in only accepted cash for 62 years, but now they are only accepting credit cards. They are not the only ones. there are plenty of other restaurants and shops around the US that are requesting electronic payments. They are urging customers to pay online, or with credit card.
It is not just cash. Some companies are asking customers to avoid using physical coupons. One wholesale club has stopped accepting paper coupons. Instead, they are automatically adding the discounts at the register for their loyal shoppers. Other companies are asking customers to use scannable coupons instead. Starbucks has also stopped accepting reusable cups. They will still provide the discount, but they will hand you your drink in a disposable cup.
The idea behind switching to credit and debit cards is to reduce risk. When it comes to cash, multiple people could have handled it within the last 5 days. Whereas with credit cards, only one person has likely held it. Less people have likely touched a credit card, than a dollar bill. In addition, a person can use a credit card without too much contact. Rather than handing their credit card to another person, the shopper can take a quick swipe through the machine. There may be little-to-no actual contact.
There are some types of electronic payments that require even less contact. There are contactless cards that can be scanned. With a quick tap of their card, the transaction can go through. It is a speedy process. There are also digital wallets that shoppers can access from their phone. Google, Apple, and Samsung Pay all work the same way. These phones offer the opportunity for a person to set up their wallet on their phone. This form of payment is contactless too.
If you are thinking of switching to credit cards, we can help. At Acumen Connections, we offer payment processing services. We offer a number of different terminals and point of sale items. Some of our products can be set up for contactless payments as well. Visit our website to learn more https://www.acumenconnections.com/. You can also give us a call at 800-864-4644 or email us at email@example.com to speak to a live representative. We are happy to find a unique solution that meets your business needs.