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Cash plays an important role for different groups in Dutch society

DNBulletin

People with disabilities or low digital literacy or who have difficulty making ends meet particularly value cash. Of all Dutch people, 28% say they cannot do without cash and 7% say they only pay with cash at points of sale, but these percentages are higher for the aforementioned focus groups.

Published: 27 June 2023

Mensen die lastig hun weg vinden in de digitale wereld hebben een sterke behoefte aan contant geld.

This emerges from a new DNB study among a representative group of over 19,000 Dutch people (see Figure 1).

Importance of cash

Low digital literacy

People who are struggling to cope in today’s digital world have a strong need for cash. 1 in 20 respondents consider their digital skills to be insufficient. Examples of digital skills include being able to use a computer or smartphone. 18% of these people only use cash at points of sale, and no less than 45% say they cannot do without cash. 

Disabilities

People with physical or intellectual disabilities also attach great importance to cash. 12% only use cash at points of sale and over 1 in 3 say they cannot do without cash. The importance of cash is related to the type of disability. Groups that relatively often prefer paying in cash are blind and visually impaired people, people with limited hand function and people with mild intellectual disabilities.

Financial difficulties

Cash is also important for people who are struggling to make ends meet. About 1 in 10 respondents in the study find it difficult or very difficult to make ends meet. Of this group, 14% only use cash at points of sale and over 1 in 3 say they cannot do without banknotes and coins.

Preference for cash for various reasons

People with a preference for cash have a variety of reasons for this. Commonly cited reasons are that cash helps them to keep track of spending and prevents overspending. This is especially important for people who are struggling to make ends meet. Another reason is that people find cash more convenient to use.

An accessible payment system is important

Cash plays an important role in society for different groups of Dutch people. It is therefore essential that cash remains available. DNB is committed to this and also endorses the legislative measures which the government proposed in late May to ensure that cash continues to function well.

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