Why you should never pay by card

Banks love to sell you cards. Don't fall into the trap: paying by card comes with a lot of dangers and extra costs.

You will spend more

Numerous studies1 show that people who pay by card spend more. When you pay with cash, you see the money you are going to spend with your own eyes, and thus you consume less impulsively. With a card, on the other hand, the amount you spend is in the background; you don't have to count bills or think about how much money you have left in your wallet, you just swipe the card without thinking.

On top of that, you have to add the fees that banks charge for using cards and the commissions when you pay on credit.

Lack of privacy

Banks sell your financial information to other companies. Even if they don't, many bankers and computer companies can see your financial activity. When you buy by card, purchase data such as the time of payment, the product or the amount are no longer private.

This data can be used to know what percentage of your income you spend on food, leisure, drugs, etc. If you have a company, this data can be bought or hacked, getting into the hands of your competitors, who can use it to beat you in a price war, for example.

They can pull the rug from under your feet

Unlike cash, which cannot be controlled remotely, cards can be deactivated or blocked by banks at any time. Also, if there is no electricity or Internet, you can't pay.

Everyone pays more taxes

Businesses that accept card payments cannot hide them from the government. So they end up paying more taxes, which will be used to fund wars or other unpopular policies. When you pay by card, you make the bank and the government gain power while you lose it.


Cards leave you poorer, more dependent, less powerful and with less privacy. That's why I recommend paying in cash or with cryptocurrencies that allow private transactions, such as Monero. Cards would not be so problematic if payments were anonymous and could not be blocked or restricted by the bank.

  1. Banker, S., Dunfield, D., Huang, A. et al. Neural mechanisms of credit card spending. Sci Rep, 11, 4070 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-83488-3