Use of cash declining?

Lucille

My apt. complex recently replaced the washers and dryers in the washateria. The new ones accept credit/debit card payment only, I had never seen that in a washateria. Could vending machines be next? Is cash going to be completely pre-empted by plastic?

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Judy Good

We were just talking about this yesterday. I honestly believe cash will eventually be a thing of the past.

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Jasdip

I pay cash except for large purchases. A lot of apartment buildings are going to debit cards instead of coins. Mine still take quarters or loonies and I have a friend who saves up his quarters for me and I buy them off of him.

I went to a bank in the local mall once to buy 2 rolls of quarters. I had a $20 bill and they asked if I had an account with them. I said no, but I have cash. The bloody hoops that had to be gone through was ridiculous.

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nicole___

Parking meters take credit cards here. I like it!

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Chi

I hardly ever use cash for anything anymore. I find it so inconvenient to have to get it from the bank or atm, and I hate touching it. I'm so glad most places take credit cards now, and with the reward programs out there, I generate a lot of cash back and other benefits. I charge everything I can. I never use debit.

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OklaMoni

On my bike ride yesterday I paid cash, but could have used my credit card (not with me) or venmo, which I had never heard of. But, one can use a credit card at vending machines in Germany for a long long time already.


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DawnInCal

I believe it is. I use my credit card for almost everything. About the only time I use cash anymore is for small purchases that are under $5.

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patriceny

I like that you can pay for parking with a credit card now. I rarely use cash and used to run around like a mad woman looking for quarters when I wanted to go somewhere which charges for parking.

Now I don't need to hoard quarters in advance of any trips. It's a win for me.

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Lars

George Burns made a joke in the 1950s about Beverly Hills being so ritzy that the parking meters took credit cards. Of course that joke is no longer funny, as parking meters in L.A. have been taking credit cards for some time.

Another joke on Burns & Allen was that the neighbor (Blanche's husband) had come up with a new invention: Frozen Yogurt, which was supposed to be hilarious back then.

I saw a news show not long ago that said that cash is seldom used in China. There are some restaurants that tried to refuse cash as payment and then cities and states passed laws making that illegal.

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Mystical Manns

I can't imagine cash being unacceptable. I rarely use my debit / credit card at all! Primarily for re-occurring, monthly payments. Many years ago our credit card number was stolen and used by someone else after my late husband made a purchase at a small store. I know it's easier now to resolve such things, but it's easier (in my eyes anyway) to just pay cash when possible and avoid it all. And, I know when it's time to stop spending! LOL when the billfold is nearing empty! LOL

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sprtphntc7a

i love that parking meters take C.C.... some use an app. that i don't like as much b/c you have to pay a surcharge which almost seems like a penalty if you don't have quarters... sigh... but a straight up kiosk is fine with me.

i haven't encountered any business that does not take cash...

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caflowerluver

We use cash for everything after our credit cards got hacked 3 times. What a nightmare it was to clear up the mess each time. It happened at Safeway, Target and a Chinese restaurant. We use credit cards for online or very large purchases.

We have been doing it now for over 6 years. It took awhile to get use to carrying enough money to pay for things, but it is easy to go to an ATM. They are everywhere. An added benefit to paying with cash is we spend a whole lot less and we are saving money. It is too easy to take out a credit card and pay for things you don't need or can't afford. When you pay with cash, you think twice IMO.

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Chi

To me, the credit card rewards points are completely worth the small risk. I get travel rewards and haven't paid for a ticket in years.

Credit cards have so many protections these days. That's why I never use debit cards since they take actual money out.

I can see how cash would result in less spending for some.

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cynic

Credit cards for parking meters and washing machines are common around here and I think it's a good thing. Cash will never disappear but it's far better to be using cards IMO for most things. Some cannot handle a credit card, checking account or even cash but most can. I also like getting the cash back on credit card purchases.

I get really annoyed when someone walks into a convenience store and wants to make a $5 or $10 purchase and whips out a $100 bill and screams "YOU HAVE TO TAKE IT!!!" Uh, no they don't. They don't have to submit themselves to a risk of robbery, injury or death because you're too lazy to get change. It's always the same, "Well that's what they GAVE me at the bank!!!" So, while you're at the bank, break the bills down. They have all the excuses, "Oh I don't want to have to carry $1000 in tens or twenties!!!" And then they try to put the burden onto the clerk, rip them a new behind all because of their arrogance. If you lose your $1000, it's gone, with a credit card you can stop it.

As for use of cash declining, it sure is, when I had the store we had very few cash purchases, it was check or credit card. Now, I wouldn't take a personal check if I had a store. Not worth it.

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patriceny

I absolutely love my credit cards cash back rewards. LOVE them. They end up paying me a lot of money every year to use their cards. (I never pay interest so I come out way ahead in the rewards game....)

I've had my credit cards compromised twice, and it's been painless to fix each time. However I watch our transactions like a hawk, and have alerts set up that ping me each time certain things happen - like online transactions, for example. I caught the one fraud charge almost instantly because I got an alert of a charge at a place that wasn't from me so I called before the ink was even dry on the alert.

Maybe I've just been lucky both times, but I swear it didn't even take me 5 minutes on the phone to deal with the fraudulent charges. They shut down the one account, open up another. If you have recurring charges set against the former account you do need to remember to give the updated info out to all who need it. (EZ Pass is my only preauthorized recurring charge and it took me another 30 seconds to update my account info online with them.)

I've had my wallet/purse stolen before. If you lose cash, it's gone forever.

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Jasdip

I never go to the bank to get cash, I get cash-back at the grocery store using my debit card.

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Lucille

I've had my wallet/purse stolen before. If you lose cash, it's gone forever.

That reminds me of advice given to me by my father long ago, to always carry some cash. That was if you are robbed, the robber has something and may be more likely to take the cash and not your life.

Of course these days even with the protections afforded to a credit card carrier by the bank, the criminal can still profit from the plastic before it is shut down, and many of these thefts are never solved; credit card theft is a lucrative business. Hopefully as technology increases, the profit from theft decreases.

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Zalco/bring back Sophie!

CC are great for those of us who are fortunate. I get cash back, travel points and all sorts of perks. For those who are not, they can be a debt trap or altogether inaccessible.

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Bookwoman

For those who are not, they can be a debt trap or altogether inaccessible.

Exactly. A couple of years ago I was in a Sweetgreen in Santa Monica that didn't take cash. This wasn't a problem for me or probably 95% of the people who go in there, but what about the other 5% who don't have a credit or debit card (and I'm not just talking about that particular store)?

Philadelphia recently passed a law making it illegal for most stores not to accept cash: https://www.vox.com/the-goods/2019/3/8/18256601/cashless-stores-philadelphia-law-amazon-go-sweetgreen

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dedtired

Philadelphia has banned card only stores because of the high poverty rate here, which means many people are “ bankless”. They can not secure credit or debit cards and are therefore closed out of any service such as a laundromat that on,y takes cards. Sadly, some would end up deep in debt if they were paying for their purchases with cards. We all know how easy it is to overspend with a card.


i do use my card for most of my purchases. Sometimes I even get a funny look from the cashier ( we have to change that title) when I hand over cash.

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Elmer J Fudd

I agree that having a card-only policy isn't reasonable and smells a bit of an elitist attitude. Oh, you need to deal with cash at your business, make bank deposits, make change? Too bad, wipe your nose and pull up your pants and get on with it.

I'm not sympathetic about people who get into debt trouble. Adults need to learn responsible adult behavior and managing personal finances, even when misfortune hits, is but one aspect of that. People who have experienced a catastrophe through no fault of their own - different story. That describes a small minority of people who get buried with far too costly credit card debt.


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raee_gw zone 5b-6a Ohio

For a while there, I was seeing some gas stations that offered a lower price for cash purchases. Not lately, though,

We pay for the convenience and widespread use of the credit cards, since the stores have to pay the CC company a percentage. That really makes a cashback card most sensible - but I don't spend enough to really get significant dollars back.

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eld6161

It absolutely should be a personal choice. Traveling home on JetBlue, they do not accept cash for any onboard purchase. Other than that, I can't think of any other example where I could not use cash, should I choose too.

I agree about the points. I will be booking a flight soon and it will be entirely on points.

I also have had my debit card compromised. No issue to clear it up. I do try to check it almost daily though so when I see something wrong I can report it immediately.

Side story: I was checking my debit account and noticed a charge for $5.23 from a Sunoco station. I never use Sunoco and if I did, I would be buying gas, I never do small purchases inside when getting gas. The card was stopped and a new one issued.

A few months later, I noticed another similar purchase, again Sunoco. But then it hit me! I sometimes go to a deli for roast beef that I like. It's called "XXXX Market". But, they have a Sunoco pump outside. The charge comes up as Sunoco rather than the deli name. The amount clicked this time because I just happened to look at the amount on the package before bringing it up to the counter.

I was glad to know that I wasn't compromised when I thought it was.


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maifleur01

I ran into the laundromat that only accepts cards about five years ago in a Chicago suburb. If the machines would have taken the card that would be fine. You had to purchase a special card with a minimum of $5. Only having a few items to wash I was not going to waste my money.

I read earlier this year that some countries in Europe are wanting to phase out the usage of money in favor of cards.

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Lucille

One possible future problem are the different kinds of non cash payments. In Houston we have the EZ Tag which automatically collects tolls through a small id posted on one's windshield. But there are a few toll roads that accept only EZ Tag, you cannot pay with cash or credit card at a toll booth.

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two25acres

I prefer to use cash, will use a credit card on line, checks at the grocery store and debit for everything else. Hubby gets cash tips so I like to use that cash when I can. Just as some people don't like traveling to the bank to get their cash, I prefer not to have to go to the bank to deposit it. Took my mom to lunch at Olive Garden the other day. The waiter asked if I was familiar with the machine for payment. I told him I was paying with cash, he seemed perplexed.

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Kathsgrdn

I love Venmo. Tried to explain it to my lawncare guy. He wanted me to put my check on my front door. Not doing that. For about a week he wouldn't give me his address for some reason. It was then that I asked if he had Venmo. Nope...he finally gave me his address so I could mail the payment to him. Silly when Venmo is almost instant and I think safer.

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sushipup1

I'm an another who uses cash for smallish purchases. I keep track of every charge i make, and I would not like to keep track of every coffee, sandwich, etc. But for larger purchases, say over about $40-$50, I use a credit card, make note of the amount, and know what my bill will be every month.

As for losing cash forever, well, I can afford to lose $200 (ouch, still), which is about the max I carry. But that's never happened to me, so I'm ahead of the game.

I also periodically get $5 and 10's and even ones at the bank, to go with the 20's I get from the ATM. The other day at the local cash-only diner, I heard the cashier ask every patron who paid with a $20 if they had something smaller, or if they would take quarters instead of ones. I paid our bill with 2 5's and 10 ones, and she was very grateful.

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Bookwoman

I also like cash for small purchases, and there are other times it comes in handy. For example, I stayed in a hotel over the weekend, and left a cash tip for the chambermaid each day.

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Lucille

As far as I know Venmo has almost no protections built in, and is a method to pay 'friends and family'.

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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

I have a $20 bill in my purse that has been there for over a year now. I never use cash. I have one credit card for online only and one for daily personal use. I don't have any balances on any. I love the money back points. I don't use airline points so everything goes to cash points back into my account. I don't use my debit card. It makes it easier for me to just use one credit card and pay one bill and not have to deal with getting cash and all that change that would collect in my purse. We use the Lowes card there since they have a discount for using it.

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Lars

Mana Island Resort in Fiji, where I went last year, was cashless, and so meals were charged to the hotel room. This made sense, since there were no banks on the island and no ATMs. Before I went there, I was concerned about how much money I should get in Fijian dollars for my stay. I still have a few Fijian dollars, but at least they are pretty.

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OutsidePlaying

I use cash for small-ish purchases and sometimes when I actually think it might be safer to do so.

I do like that I can use a credit card to pay for parking and use an app to add money if I am delayed. It means I don’t have to fish around for change, and then run back to a parking meter if I am enjoying lunch and need to add tIme. I can do it from the phone app.

When we are on a road trip, we frequently do laundry and have to get quarters for a hotel laundry. A credit card would be so much easier.

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chisue

Like Raven, I've been carrying the same $20 for at least a year. We charge *everything*. Our most recent CC statement has charges between 68 cents and over $3K. (Some generic prescriptions are less than a dollar out-of-pocket. The clerk at CVS doesn't care if you pay by CC or with coins; CC is faster.)

If you can manage your finances when paying by check without creating overdrafts, you can manage paying by CC -- with more protection and money back. Aside from tips and lemonade stands...cash is unnecessary. However, when Amazon tried to establish CC-only stores, there was an objection. The law found that to be discriminatory.

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Fun2BHere

I won't use a credit card at a restaurant or gas stations. Call me overly cautious; I don't mind.

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Elmer J Fudd

fun2B, you may want to think of your practice as being cautious but I don't think that's accurate. Others may regard it as needless worrying.

There are plenty of ways and plenty of places where your credit card information isn't completely secret. Using it in a grocery store or department store is arguably no different than in a restaurant or gas station. If you've had no problem with other locations, why would you highlight these two? Short of a full blown aggressive identity theft (which are rare and need much more than one credit card number), you have no financial risk of unauthorized use. Breath easy and enjoy the convenience.

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maddielee

It also makes sense that machines that accept cards and not cash won’t be broken into by those who are looking for a quick few dollars. A friend owns a few laundromats, the money box of his machines were constantly broken into before he switched over to cards.


For some reason card skimmers have not been a problem for him.

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patriceny

Fun, I'm curious what's different about restaurants or gas stations?

I love using my credit card at gas stations. Saves me from having to walk in to the cashier to pre-pay, then walking back out to the car....then hoping I guessed right on how much gas I needed so I don't have to walk in to collect the change. :)

Plus I get an extra % in cash back from gas stations, so even more yay for me.

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Lars

There are some toll lanes in Southern California that require a tag on the windshield, but if you do not have one and drive on these lanes, the DMV will send you a bill to pay.

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Anglophilia

I only use cash for my cleaning and yard help, the dog grooming salon and my hair salon. All these this accept only cash (check acceptable at hair salon). Other than that, it's CC's all the way!

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Michael

I've had cash in my wallet for a long time and it's never spent. I use apple pay (card)just about everywhere. Parking meters in town can be paid with apple pay. :)

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Elmer J Fudd

Only Apple Pay for meters, no other comparable means?

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Michael

Elmer, probably. I don't care or investigate other options since I use apple pay.

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Elmer J Fudd

If only Apple pay is available , that would be reason enough to move elsewhere. ;-)

Not even in Cupertino, CA (Apple's HQ since forever). Nothing there is Apple-ish only.

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Elmer J Fudd

"There are some toll lanes in Southern California that require a tag on the windshield, but if you do not have one and drive on these lanes, the DMV will send you a bill to pay."

It may have changed lately but up until last month, for both SoCal toll roads and NoCal ones and bridges, you could set up one Fastrak account with your credit card on file and it uses your pre-registered license numbers. Or, for those without an account, I think you had 72 hours to sign on and given them one to pay. I couldn't see screwing around with the transponders when the license plate method works well. The toll charges are the same. I don't use express lanes during rush hour.

It may have changed lately, I'm not sure. I last used it/drove on an OC toll road in September and the charge went into my Fastrak account fine.


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maddielee

Florida toll roads use Sunpass (as do Georgia and N Carolina). If you don’t have the transponder the FDOT will bill the license plate owner. Tolls that are billed by the plate do have an extra charge,

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rob333 (zone 7a)

I wish everything was credit card! I'd love a vending machine that worked with a card. I bet my son would too. The University keeps all that's on the student ID at the end of the term. SCAM! so he uses quarters when he can.


FDOT only billed me after I contacted them. I had no cash and didn't realize the non-cash lanes were Florida residents only. You couldn't go back and you couldn't turn around. I tried! Two months later I said, I owe you money! And they still couldn't get it together, wanted me to call. I FINALLY got a mailed notice and returned it the same day once I had their notice. No way was I going to send it to a black hole. Had to have the notice. Glad I waited.

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daisychain01

I still use cash for some small things, but not much. I give my kids their allowance via e-transfers, too.

I think it is very easy to get into debt crisis these days. If you have not been lucky enough to have someone teach you money management, there are many who will take advantage of your ignorance. When we went to the bank to deposit money into TFSAs, they were very forceful in trying to get us to borrow money. They seemed to think that was why we had built up good credit and savings - in order to get into debt. No thank you. I can see others who aren't as lucky as us, being taken in by someone in a bank counselling them to take on debt to live the good life.

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gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)

"I wish everything was credit card!"

Almost 30% of the US population doesn't own a credit card. A completely cashless society would be very difficult for many.

I don't know if that statistic included debit cards but I'd think not. I don't use cash a lot - mostly for small purchases - but I always have some on hand. And a lot of places around here will not accept a credit card for purchases less than $5 so it's cash or go without!

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eandhl2

I always use cash for tipping. We have been told the restaurant owners don't always give the waitress the full amount.

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Fun2BHere

To those who asked: By not using a credit card at a gas station, I avoid the most common place for skimming and by not using it at a restaurant, I avoid a common place for my credit card information to be stolen without the actual card being stolen. To Elmer specifically: The card readers in grocery stores and department stores can be modified to skim, but it is much less likely to happen there than at a gasoline pump that is unattended for several hours at night.

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Elmer J Fudd

What consequences do you believe your practice protects you from? Since unauthorized charges get reversed without liability for the cardholder, I'm wondering what you think could happen?

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jemdandy

I remember using half-dollar coins (a long time ago). When was the last time you saw one of those used in a transaction?

It is my thought that there will always be a need for coinage and bills to serve those who do not have a bank or credit union account. Another group who need cash are those making small. private transactions, for example, a child's allowance. There is another group who needs cash and that is small businesses who do not deal with credit card accounts and rejects, or can not afford, their fee. However, these minority groups may get steam rollered as society moves along and the credit card (plastic) use becomes the norm. governments may encourage credit cards because it will reduce the need to produce coins and bills and will be a cost reduction.

If there were no bills or coins in circulation, counterfeiters would have to turn to new methods for counterfeiting (and I predict they will).

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watchmelol

I use credit cards for just about any purchase that will accept them. There are still a few cash only businesses but most have gone to accepting credit cards with a minimum purchase. I will generally pay cash at those even if my purchase meets the minimum, usually 5.00. At around 12 plus dollars I will use a credit card. These are places like small owner owned and run donut shops or burger places.


To my way of thinking not using my cards that have rewards attached is like throwing away money. All our credit cards re paid in full every month. I like being able to print out end of year statements to see where my money was spent.



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patriceny

Ah-ha. Thank you for answering Fun. :)

I'll keep using my cards as gas stations. I'm just that lazy. LOL. Plus I've had my cards compromised twice and it wasn't all that hard to deal with when it did happen. I think the key is to watch one's transactions carefully and catch any nefarious behavior before it goes on for very long.

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Lars

My brother and I have protective sleeves for both our credit cards and our passports. When we went to Brazil, Kevin's card was stolen, and we think it was in the Miami airport (where we had to change planes), and it could have been done by someone scanning his card in the airport. We think it happened there because the fraudulent charges were all in Florida. It could have happened in the first restaurant we went to in Rio, but I think that is less likely. It definitely was a bit of an inconvenience, since he had brought only one credit card with him and not that much cash. It took a week for him to get the card replaced, and he did not receive it until we got back from Brazil, which was almost two weeks after the card was stolen. Fortunately, I had my card, and the friend that we were traveling with owed me money for the air fare and hotels, and he paid me with Brazilian currency that he collected as rent for the property that he owns there - a store front that is a bikini was salon in Leblon - the most upscale neighborhood in Rio.

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raee_gw zone 5b-6a Ohio

jemdandy, the last time I tried to use a half-dollar coin to buy something - and it must be 10 years ago at least - the clerk had never seen one, didn't think it was real money, and refused to take it!

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pudgeder

Raee-- I had the same experience w/a 2 dollar bill. The clerk didn't believe it was real. LOL


There's a vending machine right outside my office door that will gladly take your credit or debit card. It will also take cash, and if you pay with a $5.00 bill and get change, it'll dispense DOLLAR COINS.

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patriceny

I have a true story about the dollar coins...

I was going through the drive through just a year or so ago to get my beloved morning coffee, and handed the clerk a dollar coin as part of the payment.

The clerk - who appeared to be about 12 mind you - handed me back the coin and said, "we don't take Canadian money here."

LOL.

I handed it back to her and said that I doubted Canada put the "United States of America" on their coins.

She had to get a manager to confirm it was ok to accept it.

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Fun2BHere

I used to love it when the post office stamp machine gave dollar coins as change. I would save them to use for Halloween trick-or-treaters.

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