Do you still use cash?

I like to watch Judge Judy and litigants on the show are frequently claiming that they paid for “whatever” in cash; usually large amounts. I just can’t fathom this. I use a debit card, my online checking, or credit card for 99.9% of my debts and purchases. I carry cash for fast food and yard sales, etc. That’s all.

I am skeptical when people say they use cash to buy a car, for example. To me it means it is highly probably they are lying about the amount. Or if it was paid at all.

Do you use cash to any extent in your daily life?

I rarely have cash in my purse. Most everything is paid for with a debit card. MAYBE once a month I’ll get $10 a month out and usually carry it around for weeks.

We’ve recently moved back to using cash whenever possible. we still pay our bills (utilities, mortgage, etc.) online, but things like groceries and ‘miscellaneous’ expenses get paid out of a predetermined budget, in cash. That is, actual US currency that I take out of the ATM on payday. It’s the only surefire way we’ve come up with to make certain we stay within budget. If there’s not enough cash left, we don’t buy it.

We will also be using ‘cash’ to buy a car soon. But in that case, I don’t expect to walk into the dealership with a suitcase full of Benjamins…we’ll just write a check.

I don’t even use cash for fast food. I try to carry a few bills for tipping at the places I like to eat where there’s not a tip line on the credit card receipt, but that’s about it.

Kind of funny, I was thinking about posting a thread like this this morning. I was walking out of a restaurant with my breakfast and some guy asked if I had 75 cents. It’s a reasonable tactic; I just bought food, so maybe I have change. But all I ever use these days is plastic.

I try to avoid it. To me, “my money” means my bank acount; thus, by using an ATM, I’m losing money.

Besides, cash is cumbersome and inconvenient.

Almost never. I put everything on a credit card (for the reward points) and pay it off every month. Just checked my wallet. I have two one dollar bills, I have no idea how long they’ve been in there. They are marked CSA. What is that? :stuck_out_tongue:

Since this is basically a poll, it’s better suited to IMHO than GQ.

General Questions Moderator

If you’re buying a car used from a private seller, surely cash is the most common payment method?

However, I agree with your general point. I only use cash now for small value transactions, and even there, the stigma against using a card seems to be vanishing.

When I’ve heard people say this for large purchases, they usually mean they paid for it up front, rather than financing/using credit. Check/money order/draft, debit card, whatever.

(On preview… what Suburban Plankton says…)

Money order or cashiers check, except where you might suspect fraud. But fake cash could be just as likely as fake bank drafts.

All the time. Cash is way better than cards.

I almost never use cash. However, there are a good number of people, many of them lower-income, who only use cash. Some refuse to have checking accounts, either because they find them inconvenient, they don’t trust the banks or they have some reason (like child support or alimony or back taxes) that their payments would be docked. There is a fringe market economy built around this subset of the population, including check cashing establishments that charge exorbitant fees for people to cash their paychecks.

So while I and most people I know never use cash, I don’t find it farfetched that people claim to make purchases in cash.

I use cash as my primary method of payment. I have credit cards, a checking account (for which I just recently obtained a debit card), etc. I like cash.

Mostly for yard sales and less-than-$5 purchases.

I get up to 5% back on my Amex card, which adds up to a hefty payday once a year. Everything goes on that card, and paid in clear every month. I write about two checks a month max.

I use cash for small purchases (under $10 - 20, depending) and for restaurant tips most of the time. Almost everything else is paid by automatic bank debit or credit card, which gets paid off monthly.

Only if a store won’t take credit cards. And not just if they give me a dirty look for trying to use a credit card, they have to not let me use it for me to pay cash.

This has been my MO pretty much ever since my purse got stolen when I was in grad school. I just had to cancel the credit cards, but I was out about $100 in cash. That’s a lot of money, to a grad student.

This is what I thought it meant when people say they used cash to buy a car. They’re paying for it completely at the time of purchase, rather than financing it somehow.

I always have some cash – it’s very convenient and faster than charging something, especially small purchases – but I don’t use it that much.

Many people don’t have enough money to open bank accounts, and don’t qualify for credit cards, so for them, cash is essential.

I use cash all the time. I do not care to leave an electronic trail behind me. It doesn’t matter that no one has a particular reason to look into how I spend my money; it’s the principle. Also, despite what the commercials say, cash is still faster.

I do use my debit cards a lot, and I pay most of my bills by check. I’m actually trying to use cash a bit more often because with debit cards in particular, it’s easy to lose track of what you’re spending. It feels less like real money.

No, not very much. If I can’t pay online or with my card, I just don’t buy it.