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One in three blocked from paying with cash during pandemic

21 Jan 2021

Over a third of UK consumers have been blocked from paying for goods with cash during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, according to research from consumer group Which?.

Which? surveyed more than 2,000 people across the country in November 2020 and found 34% had had cash as a means of payment refused.

The research showed that people were most likely to have been refused the option of paying with cash when shopping for groceries, accounting for more than a quarter (28%) of incidents.

Leisure activities such as going to a pub or restaurant followed closely behind, with 24% of people being refused for paying with cash.

Commenting on the research, Jenny Ross, Money Editor at Which?, said: 'We have repeatedly warned about the consequences that coronavirus will have on what was an already fragile cash system, but nowhere near enough action has been taken by the government or the regulator to understand the scale of this issue.

'The government, which is still yet to introduce legislation to protect cash it promised almost a year ago, must urgently make the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) responsible for tracking cash acceptance levels. Failure to do so will see the cash network crumble and leave millions of people abandoned.'

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Registered in England, Company Registration number – 7906656. Registered Office – 58b High Street, Stony Stratford, Milton Keynes, MK11 1AQ. Registered with the Chartered Institute of Taxation as a firm of Chartered Tax Advisers. Registered to carry out audit work and regulated for a range of investment business activities by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.