The day when your wallet becomes a relic, like an 8-track tape, isn’t here quite yet. But we are getting close.
Thinning out your wallet isn’t just nice for your pants pocket. It’s also a good way to minimize your risk for identity theft, should your wallet ever be lost or stolen. As long as you’re keeping your smartphone safe and secure, the following mobile payment options offer safe, convenient alternatives to traditional payments.
Mint: Personal finance tools from Mint.com help you track, budget, and manage your money while you’re on the go. Sign up for a free Mint.com account, add your online banking and credit card accounts, and access your personal finances, all from your iPhone. One cool feature Mint offers is optional alerts to any high dollar transactions.
Square: This application and free credit card reader allow users to accept credit cards via iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch without a contract, monthly fees, or merchant account required. You can become your own merchant with this truly amazing app, which is ready to take payments within minutes of downloading. This can be handy when splitting a dinner check with a group in which everyone has a credit card, but no cash.
KeyRing: Never carry plastic or paper loyalty, membership, or library cards again! You can save time, space, and money by storing cards and coupons on your phone, so you’ll never miss a discount at the point of sale again. I especially like that KeyRing fully backs up your credit and store cards. Not every merchant is ready to accept a digital card at this point, but many are, and the number is increasing.
Paypal: Send money to your friends, manage your account, and more with the PayPal app. It’s free, secure, and more convenient than going to an ATM, writing checks, or sending gifts the traditional way.
I haven’t listed my bank’s application because they don’t currently offer mobile check deposit. But if your bank does, add them to the list, because that’s cool.