EAST POLL May to August 2020

Covid-19, Cash and the future of payments

Covid-19 (coronavirus) has had a huge impact on our lives and what was perceived to be normal before the pandemic, may now no longer be so as we come to terms with the long-term implications. One factor is how we treat cash.

Before the pandemic started cash usage was declining in many countries, but the demise of cash was still predicted to be many years away – people still liked to use it because cash transactions are generally invisible and also because it is a familiar and trusted payment mechanism. Older people, who often do not have the same digital footprint as younger generations, also prefer it.

During the Covid-19 pandemic cash usage has plummeted in many countries, partly because of fears of that Covid-19 can be transmitted by cash, and partly because people have been locked-down at home and only going out to shop for essential items. Scientific evidence suggests that the probability of viral transmission via banknotes is low when compared with other frequently touched objects, such as credit card terminals or PIN pads. There may also be a perceived risk of contagion when using cash or non-contactless payment mechanisms due to proximity to another person.

However this pandemic could speed up the shift towards digital payments, which could open a divide in access to payments instruments, and that could have a negative impact on the unbanked and older consumers. Some central banks are urging continued acceptance of cash, while others are encouraging contactless payments.

Covid-19 is impacting cash and the future of payments – how is it affecting you? Select the choice that best describes your situation.  Take the poll to express your view.


How is Covid-19 impacting the way you use cash and make payment transactions?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Your opinion counts; Through these research polls EAST regularly seeks to generate insight and opinion from members and non-members on a range of Payment and Terminal security and related issues.

Please check back regularly to share your views. Contact us if you would like to pass additional feedback to EAST on this topic.  Past poll results are in the file below.

Document title File type Download
EAST Research Poll Results Summary - December 2019 pdf Download file