Latest blog posts

Can You Cash In On Cards?

/ / Sass Savvy & Success

I bought a few things while I was out today.  Didn’t spend a lot… but here’s a picture of what my items cost:


Many of you out there will tell at a glance that I spent $17.30.


I can also tell you that of the exactly $40 I started my day with I still have $22.70 in my purse.

Yesterday I did my grocery shopping.  Used my debit card for that… not sure just what my total bill was. 

Took my clients out for lunch while I was gallivanting: used my credit card for that… can’t remember the amount of the bill, although I do remember being embarrassed that I didn’t have any cash on me, so had to put the tip on the card too, which means our server has to be completely honest come tax time because there’s a record of my generosity (or lack of same).

How about you?  Last time you bought a coffee out, or a new pair of shoes, did you pay cash or use a card?  Can you tell me the amount of the expense and what the balance of your bank account was after the transaction?

Some Surprising Statistics

I found a 2013 article that quoted some statistics that I found truly surprising!

“Cards make up 68% of all non-cash transactions in Canada, compared to the global average of about 40%, according to a 2011 Royal Bank of Scotland report.”

“Since 2005, Canadians have made more than 240 million transactions with their MasterCard PayPass — the highest of any country in the world.”

“Seventy-one percent of Canadians are comfortable with never handling cash again (up from 27% in 2011), says a Leger Marketing survey for PayPal Canada.  Almost three-in-ten women (28%) say they rarely or never withdraw cash (22% of men say the same), a 2012 RBC/Shoppers Drug Mart poll revealed.”

“Average consumer debt, excluding mortgage, is more than $27,000 and Statistics Canada says that about one-third of retirees have debt. Just the mere sight of a credit card or a credit card logo prompts people to spend more, studies have shown.”

The whole article is truly eye-opening and I hope you will take the time to read it:

Here’s a newer article:

Cash or Credit?

Do you carry and use cash for purchases?  Do you find it easier to buy things with a debit or credit card?  Do you know what your bank charges you for this “convenience”?

Personally, I dislike putting purchases of less than $10 on any card.  As I often don’t carry cash, this does slow down my spending on impulse buys like coffees or magazines.  It does mean that if I run in to the store on the way home for a loaf of bread, I will often buy something else.  I justify the extra item(s) saying I’d need them soon anyways.  Would I?  Hard to say.

Where do you stand?

Where do you stand on the whole cash/credit/spend-ease subject? 

In mid-life, we have probably started thinking seriously about retirement… and most people have reduced income so where it goes does become a consideration.

I’d be curious to know your thoughts in the Comments.

Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Darla M. Sands
2 years ago

I’m guilty of using credit cards pretty much everywhere, at places that didn’t use to take them years ago (I’m middle aged. Heh…). But we don’t keep a running debt, a real bonus. Thank you for sharing. Be well!

Donna McNicol
2 years ago

Interesting…I use a debit card for almost all local purchases. Partially because I need ten transactions a month to get a higher interest rate on our checking account. I rarely carry more than $40 on me, and most of it usually goes when we are out and hubby asks if I have any money. LOL!

#MLSTL visitor (shared on SM)

sue from Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond

Hi Agnes, I rarely carry cash but have been revising my thinking lately because although I use my debit card, which I feel is cash anyway, your point about reducing impulse buys is a good one. If I have cash, I am more aware of what I’m spending. Last year, my daughter completed an exhaustive exercise of just where she and her husband were spending their money. She could tell you to the last cent. After she realised how much money they were wasting, she prepared a new budget and now they take cash out each week for expenses and… Read more »

2 years ago

I have no debt but put everything on a credit card that I pay off each month. Years ago I was waist deep in credit card debt and once I got out I never wanted to do it again. I carry very little cash on me I might get cash only three or four times a year. lol

Christie Hawkes
2 years ago

I use a credit card for most purchases and pay it off every month. That way I earn travel points and also I have a record of every purchase, no matter how large or small. I actually find I burn through cash faster without even realizing it until my wallet is empty again. That said, I always keep at least a little cash on hand–just in case. #MLSTL

2 years ago

I am such a debit person. I hardly ever carry cash unless I know I’m going to a cash only place and then I have to make a special trip to the bank. Yesterday, I saw someone use their phone to pay at the grocery store. I must get that app!

Leanne |

I use my c/card for all our major purchases but make sure it’s paid off completely before the end of the month. Incidentals are paid with cash. I’m very conscious of where our money goes and I’m careful not to let it slip through my fingers being too frivilous. That being said, as we’ve become debt free, I do try to allow myself a little treat here or there so I’m not too Stoogish with what we have!

2 years ago

This subject is SO in my wheelhouse these days. Over the course of the last year or so I’ve become much more intentional with my money. I give serious thought before it ever leaves my wallet. That said, the laws here in the US are such that I don’t feel the consumer protections are as good for a debit card that draws directly from a bank account than they are for a credit card. I use credit cards but keep track of EVERYTHING and the balance is paid in full at the end of the month. If I can’t do… Read more »