I admit it, we do 95% of our spending on plastic. We have been using our debit and credit cards for years to pay for just about everything. The discipline is there, so everything is paid in full at the end of the month. $20-$40 cash lasts me the whole month. The system works for us, because we have discipline and are not big spenders. Also, downloading the transactions to Microsoft Money is a quick and convenient way to track your spending.
With that in mind, I remembered Dave Ramsey saying that you spend 12-18% less when using cash. Spending cash hurts. Here is someone offering me a better return than any savings account or mutual fund out there. I have always glossed over people saying that using cash saves you money, but I really should take a look at this. Any credit card rewards pail in comparison to 12-18%. I mean, credit card companies most likely offer the rewards since it provides a net benefit to their bottom line. Maybe part of the benefit is that people spend way more than the 1-5% reward that they give back. Plus without using credit there is no chance that I can go into debt.
Where I am going with this? The same place we should all go when someone positively challenges our way of doing things…to the laboratory. Experimenting with potential growth areas is must on our journeys toward freedom. The great thing about experiments is that if they fail or we don’t like them, we can easily resume our old ways. If I can save even half of the suggested numbers, it will probably be worth the effort. I will have to do some more research on ditching the plastic, but my first thought is for plastic free July.