What Will Your Wallet Look Like in 2020?

March 25, 2016 | Dan Colt

The way that we use money has changed quite a bit over the last decade. More and more, we now buy and sell things using our smart devices online and in apps with our debit or credit cards. With digital payments replacing cash, the traditional bi-fold, tri-fold and clutch wallets are disappearing—and by 2020, or even sooner, could be a thing of the past.

So what will your wallet look like in 2020? What will you need to carry with you to buy things, identify yourself, show proof of insurance and get great deals from loyalty clubs?

For one thing, your wallet is going to look a lot thinner. Cash will most likely be less important than it is currently, because credit and debit card processors will be cheaper and easier for retailers and small businesses to use, so there would be fewer “cash only” establishments. Without cash or with less cash, you don’t need a big portion of the traditional wallet. Instead of cash, your debit and credit cards have all of the purchasing power you need.

To further lighten your wallet, Mission Fed has partnered with Apple Pay and Samsung Pay so you can use your Mission Fed Debit Card or Credit Card directly from your smartphone. Many large retailers already allow you to pay with your iPhone® or Apple Watch using Apple Pay and many Samsung smartphones using Samsung Pay, and the number of stores offering this option is steadily growing. You can upload the information from your cards, such as your Mission Fed Credit Card or Debit Card, to your phone and then use your phone or watch at the store instead of pulling out your card. Sure, you’ll probably want to keep a credit card around for the rare store that will not have this feature now, but for most of your purchases, your phone or watch will be enough.

The exciting new payment technology works for giving money to friends, too, provided they have a bank account. Mission Fed has a feature called Popmoney®, which allows you to send money to anyone, no matter where they bank, as long as you have their email address or phone number. So even if they have an account with another bank or credit union, you can send them money from your Mission Fed Account, which may be a more secure option rather than taking out cash and giving it to them, since cash may be misplaced or lost if they don’t have their wallet handy.

In fact, your phone allows you to carry out a lot of traditional banking functions that would require you to keep things in your wallet. In addition to enjoying 24/7 access to Online Banking, Mission Fed members can use the Mission Fed Mobile Banking App on smart devices to deposit checks remotely, view previous checks, check balances and even find ATMs and branches. Your phone already offers convenience at your fingertips, and it will only become more convenient as time goes on and we near 2020.

Now, your wallet contains more than just cash and credit cards. You usually keep your driver’s license or ID in there as well. However, several states are testing digital driver licenses so that someday you may be able to identify yourself using your smartphone. The reasoning they offer them is that many of your other transactions are done online and through your smartphone, so it makes sense to move your identification or driver license to a digital platform as well.

Many of us still have our auto insurance ID cards in our wallets, but many insurance providers offer their paperwork through the same app that would host your driver license, so you don’t need to carry a card at all. In the coming years, other providers will most likely do the same to keep up. Many auto clubs with roadside assistance now allow for digital ID cards, too.

Most loyalty clubs for grocery stores, gas stations and other retailers will allow you to look up your account with a phone number, so you can remove all of those clunky cards from your wallet. While many memberships, such as season passes to museums and other attractions, are still found more in traditional paper form, we wouldn’t be surprised if that changed in the near future.

For special events, the wallet features on the iPhone and other smartphones let you keep tickets to shows and flights and loyalty card information stored on your phone. You can buy tickets to movies and many other concerts and events from your smartphone and show them to ushers to scan, so the whole process is becoming cashless and ticketless. In addition to not having to worry about losing your tickets, you can skip the box office lines, too.

The great news is that your wallet is going to get a lot simpler in the next few years and by 2020, your wallet will most likely consist of an ID card and little else. There are already cell phone cases that contain slots for your ID and a couple of other cards, so you can begin to migrate to a future wallet, which will likely look like your phone case.

It will still be important to keep hard copies of important items in case something happens to your phone. But you can simplify your wallet quite a bit by moving the majority of its contents over to your phone right now. By 2020, having a wallet at all will really be more of a contingency plan than a necessity.



The content provided in this blog consists of the opinions and ideas of the author alone and should be used for informational purposes only. Mission Federal Credit Union disclaims any liability for decisions you make based on the information provided. This article contains links for websites that Mission Fed does not control. Mission Fed is not responsible and does not assume liability for the operations, content, links, privacy or security policies of third party websites.

Dan Colt

Dan Colt

Dan Colt is VP Technology Management at Mission Federal Credit Union. He has over 25 years of experience in the Information Technology industry, including numerous aspects such as security, data processing, disaster recovery and project management.

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