Bank of England stirs up cash vs cashless debate

The Bank of England is encouraging people to change the way they pay for goods for a full week to see what impact it has on their lives.

Those who usually pay with cash have been challenged to live without using coins and notes for a week, while those who are typically cashless have been requested to do the opposite.

It is part of the Bank’s Future Forum 2018, a series of events looking at how money is used in society and an investigation on how future spending patterns might be shaped.

Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney announced details of the annual Future Forum on Friday, describing this year’s theme as “Let’s Decide the Future of Money." In general, the event aims to bring together a wide range of views in order to discuss the Bank’s role in serving society.

In a statement, the Bank said it recognises money is evolving, adding that this evolution has implications for the way it makes payments, the way it keeps its financial system safe and the types of financial services required. As well as gathering general banking feedback, the Bank is seeking people’s views on the future of banking, fintech, cyber resilience, climate change and savings.

Those who participate in the cash versus cashless challenge are invited to share their experiences with the Bank to help inform its future decision making.

Commenting on this year’s Future Forum, Carney said: “I’m looking forward to hearing your questions, ideas and thoughts. Together, let’s decide the future of money."

All of this year’s Future Forum will run on a virtual platform, from now until 16 January 2019. All of the Bank’s governors will host their own live Q&A sessions on the platform starting with Sir Dave Ramsden on 14 November, Sam Woods on 16 November, Jo Place on 19 November, Carney himself on 27 November, Jon Cunliffe on 13 December, and Ben Broadbent on 9 January.  

Those interested in getting involved and finding out more can visit the Bank of England Future Forum website or email

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