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What’s in Your Wallet: Cash or Credit?

With a recession officially upon us, a lot of people are starting to take a harder look at their financial situation.

While I’d normally ask a question like this over at the Online Savings Blog, it’s your answer I’m interested in.

When it comes to shopping, spending and saving, do you carry cash and use it or pull out your debit/credit card to make purchases?

Leave a comment and share why you use one or the other.


  1. tightwad

    About two years ago you asked this question on the onlinesavings blog and I was one of the few that said I mostly carried cash. Alot has changed for me since. With interst rates falling on online savings accounts, I was forced to go to a couple of the high interest reward checking accounts. Most of these have debit card useage requirements of ten, or more, per month to qualify. Now days I am more likely to swipe a debit card, then pay with cash.

    BTW- Sorry to see you sell your savings blog. I enjoyed reading it. I wish I would have tried to contrbute more, but blog posting is not my strong suit. Good luck in your future endeavors; I have a couple of kids around your age that I wish had your money sense.

  2. junger (Author)

    tightwad — thanks for the kind words and continued support.

    What checking accounts are you using now? I’ve always used a plain-jane checking account with no minimum debit card swipage.

    I did open an Electric Orange account recently for some business expenses and got a debit card from there, but there are no minimum requirements either.

  3. tightwad

    Jason, I currently have a reward checking account at my local credit union that pays 5%, up to $15,000. It requires 10 card uses. I also have a nationally available account at Charter Bank in New Mexico that currently pays 6.01% up to $25,000. It is scheduled to drop to 5.01% the first of Febuary. Charter bank requires 13 point of sale transactions a month.

    Usually I pay my phone bill in $5.00 increments, and knock out the Charter requirements in the first couple days of the month. The other card I use at the grocery store and gas station and easily reach my 10 transactions.

    I have a CD maturing next month and I’m seriously considering opening another rewards checking account. That would bump up my debit card useage requirements to 33 a month. It will be more work, but there really isn’t any other way to get 5%+ at the moment. Of course there are no guarantees these rates will hold up either.

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