The spectre of mounting debt is such that many are now opting to keep that credit card under lock and key and to instead use only cash and debit cards to avoid borrowing.
The British Retail Consortium has reported a 12.9 percent drop in credit card transactions. Bad news for the high street you'd think, but not quite, as debit card payments rose by 15.3 percent. Credit card payments are actually the most expensive to process, and cost the retailer 1.7p per cash transaction.Credit cards are reportedly used in only 10% of all transaction, but account for more than 44% of all processing costs.
The BRC Director General, Stephen Robertson, commented: 'Hard-pressed customers are switching to cash and debit cards for the reassurance that they can't spend what they haven't got.
'At the same time, use of credit cards has dropped sharply. Cash remains king - used for more than half of all retail payments.'