Whenever you use a dollar bill, you’re wasting money.
No, not because you’re spending instead of saving, but because you’re contributing to a wasteful product. I don’t know how many people have noticed the various advertisements for the new dollar coins, I actually haven’t seen ANY, although they claim to be doing them on tv, radio and various banks and such, have you seen them? Do they mention WHY we should bother using the coins other than they look cool?
I highly doubt they do, and there are several arguments against using dollar coins and “forcing” a change in the system, but I would like to bring up some points and hopefully refute most of the arguments against them.
Argument 1: Coins are much heavier for consumers and businesses.
Rebuttal: Businesses could make sense, but they’re already dealing with tons of other change, adding dollars to the mix isn’t going to make a huge difference, especially when it could cut down on the number of quarters they need. This assumes that more and more vending machines, washing machines, etc., will be modified to accept dollar coins, cutting down on the use of quarters somewhat.
Ok, now the regular consumer doesn’t use THAT many dollar bills! Keep in mind I’m not proposing we get rid of $5 bills or higher (although they are trying to get the £5 coin going in England) so how many dollar bills are you likely to have floating around your wallet? Lets just say eleven, because I’ve found eleven $1’s in my wallet before, now, the new dollar coins weigh very slightly more than a quarter, is it really a huge hassle to have eleven quarters? Or imagine 20 quarters, it isn’t a big deal! If it’s too heavy, you just exchange or spend them like any other money!
Argument 2: I’m used to using dollar bills, I don’t really like coins they just tend to be a hassle.
Rebuttal: I know, humans are creatures of habit, but did you know paper money (and I would wager even moreso for $1 bills than other denominations because they’re used more) gathers more bacteria than coins do? Paper is porous and absorbs more of whatever it touches, so they’re even worse than doorknobs for flu season. Just because you’re used to something, doesn’t mean it’s the best way to go, you just need the right incentive to change. Coins also last longer than bills, consider this: the dollar bill costs 3.8¢ to produce, and the dollar coin costs about 8¢ to produce, HOWEVER a dollar bill lasts between 18-22 months in circulation, that’s less than two years! I don’t even need to tell you how long a coin lasts in circulation, I find coins from the 70s on a regular basis, and sometimes as far back as the 30s! So, if we stopped production of the dollar bills the government and then the people would SAVE money, or at least that money could go to something else more useful.
Argument 3: They look too much like quarters.
Rebuttal: They have smooth edges, they’re gold colored, they have an entirely different design, they’re thicker, no, they don’t look that much like quarters anymore. Additionally, if something makes you pay another second or two of attention to what you’re spending, isn’t that a good thing? It doesn’t take anyone more than an extra second or two to realize if they’re holding a dollar or a quarter.
There are more I’m sure, but those are the big ones I wanted to address, please feel free to comment, I want to know the other reasons people have for not helping to change the system. I’m not an activist for much of anything, but I think this is a small way people could help the economy and it could even be fun in a way.
One other note; the US is lagging behind in so many things lately, this is yet another area where that is the case. Many many other countries have a dollar coin in place, if not $2 and $5 coins, do we really want to continue falling behind?
For more info on bills and coins: