Retail Secrets: Should I Use Card or Cash?
Shopping centres, at any time of year, can be a minefield of financial temptation. Knowing how to shop smartly in order to keep costs low is essential. Once bargains and discounts have been found, consumers are faced with one last decision at the checkout – should I pay with cash or card?
Of course, both of these payment methods have their advantages and benefits. Knowing which is best for you will depend on your personal situation and spending habits but conscientious consumers should acknowledge the risks which are associated with the different forms of payments.Cash
In many ways, cash is the safer option when it comes to spending. Taking out a pre-determined figure before you head to the shops is a good way to make sure that you stick to your budget. The downside to cash is that it is not always as convenient as paying on card and takes up more space in bags and wallets. Many consumers also worry about getting "short-changed" a problem which is not linked with card payments. However, the benefits associated with this form of payment should far outweigh the disadvantages.
Top Tip: always keep hold of your loose change to use it for future payments. Alternatively, collecting copper coins from your change at home can see you accrue a tidy sum over a relatively short period. This can then be bagged and exchanged or deposited at your bank – helping you to literally make the most of every penny.
Card payments are perhaps the most convenient of payment methods, especially thanks to the newer chip-and-pin system. Cards, whether debit or credit cards
, can offer users a number of disadvantages rather than benefits. Although they are more convenient and easy to carry, they also make it incredibly easy to overspend. This is because you cannot see your finance levels physically depleting and can therefore lose track of how much you have spent – at least until your next bank statement comes in.Credit cards
can be particularly dangerous if used recklessly. Failing to pay off credit cards when the bill arrives can see interest rates incurred – something which will increase your overall level of spending.
Top Tip: leaving cards at home when intending to pay by cash will help you to avoid temptation and stick to your budget.