Ikea will go cash-free throughout Sweden if the test is a success. Photo: TT
Ikea said that customers in Gävle, an eastern city best known for its giant straw Christmas goat, were strongly in favour of abandoning cash.
“In our surveys, the vast majority of customers have said that cash payments are no longer important. Today we use a fair amount of resources on handling cash but we’d prefer to use them on something else,” Patric Burstein, the head of customer relations at the Gävle store, told Dagens Nyheter.
Ikea said that its cashless test would begin in Gävle on October 1st. If all goes well, the company plans to eliminate cash payments in all of its Swedish locations.
Department store Åhléns is also testing the idea of going cashless, with three of its locations currently not accepting cash payments.
Swedes use their debit cards three times as frequently as most Europeans and with the popularity of smartphone payment apps like Swish, it has been predicted that Sweden will be completely cash-free by 2030.
The move to ditch cash also has its naysayers, however, with some Swedes worried about the effects on rural areas, pensioners – and personal integrity.