Going cashless? Millennial women in the South lead the way

The laggards? West Coast baby boomer men still tote wallets with greenbacks inside

Sabrina Karl
Personal Finance Writer
Data whiz and visual storyteller


Three in 10 Americans say they never or rarely carry cash anymore, according to new data from Capital One, with millennial women in the Southeast and Southwest being the least likely to have cash on hand. 

Male baby boomers on the West Coast, on the other hand, are far more likely to have greenbacks in their wallet. 

Capital One’s survey of consumer spending habits found that while a full third of women report they never or rarely carry cash, less than a quarter of men (22 percent) say the same. 

Meanwhile, Americans age 18-35 are the least cash-carrying generation, with 34 percent indicating they generally go cashless, while the share dropped to just 25 percent among baby boomers, who are age 55 and older. 

Differences were observed across regions of the U.S as well.

West Coasters were the most likely to carry bills in their wallets, with only 23 percent saying they typically carry none. That’s almost 10 percentage points lower than the cashless crowd in Southeastern and Southwestern states, where almost a third (32 percent) report not carrying cash. Similarly, 31 percent of Midwest respondents reported going cashless most of the time. 

Capital One’s survey drew results from approximately 2,000 U.S. adults, with demographics mirroring the national population. It released its results Mar. 22, 2018.

Cardholders want security first from mobile wallets

See related: Infographic: Most Americans OK with going cashless, Parking your car? Garages and meters are going cashless, At music festivals, cashless is all the rage, More infographics

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Updated: 02-15-2019