Sweden leads the race to become cashless society
Last year, Sweden launched a new series of notes featuring 20th-century Swedish cultural giants such as Astrid Lindgren, Greta Garbo and Ingmar Bergman. But like its Nordic neighbours Norway, Denmark and Finland, Sweden is fast becoming an almost entirely cashless society. Swedish buses have not taken cash for years, it is impossible to buy a ticket on the Stockholm metro with cash, retailers are legally entitled to refuse coins and notes, and street vendors increasingly prefer card or phone payments. According to the Riksbank, cash transactions made up barely 2% of the value of all payments made in Sweden last year. In shops, cash is now used for some 20% of transactions, half the number five years ago.