The 10 countries where apps like Venmo and Apple Pay could replace cash sooner than you think

Our wallets and smartphones have become one.

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Our wallets and smartphones have become one.
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Olivia Harris/Getty

The world is slowly but surely kicking cash to the curb.

With the invent of mobile payment apps like Apple Pay, Google Wallet, Venmo, PayPal, and Square, our wallets and smartphones have become one.

In some countries, a cashless economy is all but inevitable – and could happen sooner than you think.

That’s according to new research from global trading site ForexBonuses, which studied the world’s top economies and their use of cashless methods of payment. Debit and credit cards have been around for a while, but mobile payment apps like Venmo and Apple Pay are quickly becoming commonplace.

To compile its list, ForexBonuses looked at the 20 countries in the world with the largest economies, narrowing down to the top 10 based on available data. They evaluated six metrics for each country:

    Number of credit cards per person Number of debit cards per person Proportion of cards in issue with contactless functionality Five-year growth of cashless payments Percent of payment transactions using non-cash methods Percent of people who know they can use mobile payment options

The percentage of cashless consumer payments was deemed the most important metric and was weighted five times more than the rest of the data points.

Canada is the world’s most cashless country, according to ForexBonuses, with 57% of consumers using non-cash payment methods. Keep scrolling for the full list:


10. Russia

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Shutterstock

• 4% of transactions are cashless.

• In the past 5 years, cashless payments have grown by 22%.

• 57% of people say they are aware of mobile payment options.


9. Japan

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REUTERS/Thomas Peter

• 14% of transactions are cashless.

• In the past 5 years, cashless payments have grown by 12%.

• 27% of people say they are aware of mobile payment options.


8. Germany

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Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

• 33% of transactions are cashless.

• In the past 5 years, cashless payments have grown by 10%.

• 48% of people say they are aware of mobile payment options.


7. Australia

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Getty Images/Michael Dunning

• 35% of transactions are cashless.

• In the past 5 years, cashless payments have grown by 10%.

• 39% of people say they are aware of mobile payment options.


6. China

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dibrova/Shutterstock

• 10% of transactions are cashless.

• In the past 5 years, cashless payments have grown by 100%.

• 77% of people say they are aware of mobile payment options.


5. United States

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Shutterstock/turtix

• 45% of transactions are cashless.

• In the past 5 years, cashless payments have grown by 12%.

• 48% of people say they are aware of mobile payment options.


4. France

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photo.ua/Shutterstock

• 59% of transactions are cashless.

• In the past 5 years, cashless payments have grown by 14%.

• 38% of people say they are aware of mobile payment options.


3. United Kingdom

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Shutterstock/Iakov Kalinin

• 52% of transactions are cashless.

• In the past 5 years, cashless payments have grown by 15%.

• 47% of people say they are aware of mobile payment options.


2. Sweden

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Flickr/Pedro Szekely

• 59% of transactions are cashless.

• In the past 5 years, cashless payments have grown by 13%.

• 47% of people say they are aware of mobile payment options.


1. Canada

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Shutterstock/mffoto

• 57% of transactions are cashless.

• In the past 5 years, cashless payments have grown by 16%.

• 39% of people say they are aware of mobile payment options.