If you haven’t yet formed the habit of paying digitally yet, now is the time to start. The days of cramming a bunch of cards into our wallets will soon be over. If you want the ease and convenience of using apps like Apple Pay, the Square Cash App, Paypal and more, you can have your debit,  credit cards and gift cards safely stored on your phone or mobile device. Here are some tips to help you get into the habit of embracing secure payment apps for simplicity and convenience.

1. Store your phone where you keep your money

Every time I pay with a physical credit card out of habit, I kick myself. I often forget to access the apps on my phone when I have the option. For this reason, I bought myself a thin, lightweight phone wallet.

It has large pocket to store your phone even with a slim case as well as slots for cards and a plastic photo ID pocket. It even has a billfold to store cash, coupons or receipts. It’s perfect for those looking to store everything together.

I’ve seen phone pockets for men that look like a small pouch with a zipper that can corral the same types of items. Many of these are made with durable material that is water resistant as well. Stay organized and protect your phone, cards and money all in one place. There are other styles that allow you to adhere a pocket to the back of the phone to store cards and cash as well.

Think of it as a way to trigger the habit of paying with your phone. If you’re used to reaching for your wallet and pulling out a card, housing your phone near other payment methods might help you to remember that your phone can be one of the payment options and you’ll remember to pay with the apps.

2. Nudge the cashiers to adapt

Sometimes cashiers are new, never handled this type of transaction or flat out don’t know what to do with a digital payment of any kind. I have a met a few that make up excuses to try and get you to use another method of payment because they don’t want to admit that they don’t know how to do it.

Unless the line is long, I don’t let them off the hook so quickly. I worked in retail for over 10 years and have experience as a cashier. I know that there is always a person or manager in charge of the front end that has to have some knowledge about such methods of payment.

So I make them find out or I tell them what another cashier has done in the past. For example, sometimes cashiers find it hard to scan the bar code on my phone’s screen when using a gift card. So I explain that sometimes they have to enter the numbers in manually.

3. Start managing your money via your digital wallet.

To get into the habit of using digital pay more, you can talk about how people can connect their accounts to these apps or load money onto them. Even though this has been around for a bit, most people aren’t really familiar with digital pay. They could find this info useful and the more familiar they become with this method, the more confident they will feel with using it in public.

The Bottom Line

Use the tips above to establish the habit of paying digitally. The more you view your phone as a payment device, the faster others will adapt and embrace the digital wallet revolution.


Karen is a Nationally Syndicated Personal Finance Writer who sharpens her skills at US News Money. You can also find her placing clients on podcasts and reading about home office organization, productivity and habits.

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