Hi! I am out of town for the Financial Blogger Conference this week, but I have some excellent guest posts lined up for you thanks to some amazing readers and bloggers!!!
Hi! I’m Christine and I’m a married twenty-something with a love for coffee, writing, my dogs, and anything organizing and spreadsheet related. I blog over at My Everyday Life, a lifestyle blog where I blog about a little of everything. I currently hail from the Midwest as my husband’s career in the military has moved us away from our Southern home.
When I first started as a bank teller, I was fascinated with dollar coins. Maybe it’s because hardly anyone uses them. Maybe it’s because it reminded me of the time I spent in Italy, where the one and two Euro coins were used just as much (if not more) than other paper currency. But the more I think about (and read about) the dollar coins, the more I realize that we should really be using them instead of paper dollars!
First Things First
Dollar coins only cost a little bit more to make and last nearly 10x as long. I mean, honestly, with all the budget issues our government is having, you would think they could be a little more frugal with currency production. While it does take about $0.121 to produce the dollar coin as opposed to the $0.052 it takes to produce the dollar bill, coins generally circulate for 25-303 years as opposed to much shorter life span of paper currency. Some report a life span as short as 18-22 months4 while the U.S. Mint says $1 bills last approximately 6 years.5 It doesn’t take a rocket scientist (or an accountant) to figure out that in the long run it would be much more cost effective to use dollar coins rather than paper dollars.
But People Really Don’t Like Change
(Ha. See what I did there?) I’ve heard so many arguments from people about why we can’t make the switch to the dollar coin. Everything from “It’s weird” to the fact that it will cost businesses tons of money to incorporate the dollar coin into their daily routine.
Honestly, I get deposits from businesses every day who just toss dollar coins in with the rest of the coin in their deposit. The only people I could see a really valid argument from is vending machine manufacturers/owners who would literally have to change the essential parts of their machine to accept dollar coins. Although, older machines that were built to accept the Susan B. Anthony dollar will work with the new dollar coins as well. (I can’t remember where I read this, but it has something to do with the magnetic properties in both coins being the same.)
And as for individuals, a lot of people complain about the extra weight dollar coins will add to their wallet. How many one dollar bills are you really carrying around!?
And Are That Many People Still Using Paper Instead of Plastic Anyway?
I think it depends on your location. From what I’ve heard and observed, more affluent areas deal a lot more in plastic whereas your lower income areas are going to use a lot more cash. That may be completely unfounded, but it’s just a trend I’ve noticed as a teller.
I’ve been trying to use more paper currency as part of a little extra savings plan but before that I hadn’t carried paper currency in years! And besides all of that totally logical stuff, can I just say for the record that a dollar coin is just way more awesome than a paper dollar? Most of the paper dollars I touch make me want to bleach my hands, but dollar coins are generally much less used (read: gross) looking. If you use paper currency anyway, try asking your bank for dollar coins next time and just see how you like it!