Is it worth putting everything on one card? A poker dilemma, this time, is taking place in the realities of non-cash transactions. We are accustomed to the fact that the card we use every day in Poland, abroad may expose us to unnecessary expenses. However, here comes a solution that breaks this myth.
Coins and notes rustle less and less in Poles' wallets. Even before the coronavirus reached us, and with all its suggestions to avoid contact with cash, we had already switched to other forms of payment.
How the Poles started to like payment cards
According to the National Bank of Poland, there are already over 42 million payment cards in circulation in our country, a few million more than the number of people living in Poland. Taking children and cash supporters into account, it turns out that the so-called statistical Polish consumer uses several cards.
Debit cards are indisputably dominant - over 80 percent, with credit cards accounting for nearly 14 percent. This leaves only a few percent margins for prepaid cards. However, specific proportions may start to change in the nearest future.
What we appreciate the most is the convenience and speed of cashless transactions. In times of pandemic threats, an additional advantage has been added to this list. Contactless payments do not expose us to touching terminals or coins and notes.
The study entitled "Cashless payments in the eyes of Poles 2019" made by Pollster studio at the Warsaw Banking Institute's request shows that only one in five consumers prefer cash. The others most willingly use cards, less often confirm payments with smartphones.
The statistics could show an even clearer lead for cards. However, their supporters point out that sometimes they have to reach for notes and coins because some retailers demand them, unwilling or unable to install terminals. Nevertheless, we are ahead of most of Europe and the world in cashless transactions.
We change our habits when we travel abroad
Once you face the need to withdraw cash at an ATM abroad, you will realise that such an operation using a PLN debit card is a genuinely exorbitant expense. Whether we like it or not, banks charge themselves quite substantial commissions. To put it simply, these are losses that do not pay off.
A bill to be paid in a foreign restaurant, hotel or shop? Again, a "normal" debit card can be used, but after analysing the expenses, it will usually turn out that we have been tricked into paying a commission and that we do not know the exchange rate between EUR and PLN.
This is one reason we change our habits before a trip abroad, returning to the traditional form of money and visiting an exchange office. The disadvantages of this situation seem to be quite obvious: 1. we lose time; 2. it usually turns out that we have not foreseen all our expenses, which leads to the fact that we use debit cards abroad anyway; 3. after returning to the country, we have a small change in foreign currency in our pockets, and it is no use going back to the exchange office with it. How to avoid all this?
Currencies useful for e-shopping
Nowadays, we can often deal with prices in foreign currencies, not only when we travel abroad. E-commerce has become a field that has pushed the boundaries between countries. Living in Poland, every day, we can reach for goods made available by e-stores and auction portals, e.g., in China, the United States, Great Britain, or Germany. Sometimes we are tempted by a more extensive selection of products, in other cases by better quality or lower prices. Access to new products or the desire to have something that no one around has, is an advantage.
Relatively short delivery time from abroad and, in some cases, free delivery - these are further reasons for not limiting yourself to the offer of shops and portals in one country when e-shopping. However, there is still a crucial issue: paying for clothes, shoes, electronics, or household appliances when they are priced in pounds, dollars or euros.
As a rule, the transaction can be made from a gold account, but currency conversion and commission fees may deprive you of all the purchase satisfaction. One basic principle is to use the currency the seller is trading in. Therefore, you can open an appropriate currency account in your bank, use the services of an online exchange office and pay by exchanging the proper amount of money. It will be cheaper, but... there is a much simpler solution!
One card for many occasions
When the coronavirus threat is over, the barriers disappear and we return to the realities of free travel. Let's imagine a hypothetical week of the life of a European living permanently in Poland. He or she works, buys food, fuels the car, goes to the cinema on Tuesday evening, orders a book from an online shop on Wednesday, takes a break from work on Thursday to grab a new smartphone from a global shopping portal, and prepares a surprise for his or her loved ones - a weekend in Barcelona. The European will book the flights and accommodation in advance. Once there, he or she will rent a car. Sightseeing, walking, having fun, spending some money in galleries, cafes and souvenir shops. On Sunday, back home to start another week in the life of a European on Monday.
Whether in a Polish grocery shop, petrol station, online bookshop, cinema theater, foreign auction site, car rental company operating in Catalonia or local museums and restaurants, a European from Poland will be able to settle obligations with a single payment card. And there would be nothing exciting or worth following if it were not for one significant fact. The card will help its owner pay in PLN and EUR and many other currencies, relieving him/her of the worries about unfavourable currency conversion, commissions, or insufficient funds in any of the sub-account currencies.
The product, which is already available at Conotoxia, will be useful to users daily. Instead of several plastic cards or combining cash and electronic transactions, one multi-currency card is enough.
You can order it online, and you won't have to pay a penny. You also get free access to 20 currency accounts and a virtual card option on your smartphone with instant and free activation. You can top up your account quickly, when you want, and with any amount. Conotoxia does not set any thresholds for minimum amounts. You can use the card to pay everywhere where Visa transactions are accepted, and if necessary, withdraw cash from ATMs all over the world. Not enough? If so, you can find out more by clicking on https://conotoxia.com/multi-currency-cards.