Interest Pieces

Covid infections from cash lower than PIN Keypads. Time to rethink?

Travel money service Bidwedge unveils new, nationally representative research on the nation’s continued reliance on cash. Focussing on how Bank of England has confirmed COVID infection rate from cash is low, and higher on PIN keypads. Important news as a third of Brits still rely on cash for their essential shopping, and many in the performance industry are cash reliant too.

The Bank of England has recently concluded that the transmission of Coronavirus via cash is low, after their recent research and testing across bank notes. In fact, the tests showed that shoppers were more likely be be infected by the keypads on PIN machines, from paying via card. This news comes as a shock, since retailers across the UK have been pushing for card payments over cash payments for months during the pandemic. Now it has been proven that cash is the safer way to pay.

Brand new, nationally representative research, commissioned by travel cash provider, Bidwedge (, across 2,083 UK adults found that a third of Brits are still reliant on cash for essential shopping and 29 million Brits try and have cash on their person at any given time to feel more financially secure.

Key Stats

  • 32% of Brits still rely on cash for essential shopping and goods – 15,570,000
  • 60% of Brits still try to have some cash on their person as it makes them feel more financially secure – 28,820,000
  • 13% of Brits say that it is essential to their livelihood and income to be paid in cash – 5,476,000
  • 55% of Brits, when they go on holiday, will still be utilising cash as their main method of payment – 17,780,000

Shon Alam, CEO of Bidwedge, commented on the findings saying, “Despite all the calls from people to use cards, cash is still incredibly important to millions of Brits across the country. Communities rely on cash and for businesses, it is cheaper for them to process cash rather than card payments, so it actually can help thousands of firms that are struggling right now.

Now, the research from the Bank of England shows that cash is king once again, and offers a lower risk of infection than paying by card. There are still ways to ensure the use of cash is extra safe, however. Most phone and tablet wipes will disinfect our new plastic notes quickly and, following guidance from the World Health Organisation, remember to wash your hands after handling physical money and don’t touch your face. Many cash dispensers are disinfecting money before it comes out of the wall, so try and find cash point that is doing this and try and pay as close to the total sum to avoid receiving too much change and passing on unnecessary coins.”