As an international student living through the COVID-19 pandemic in Spain, I have been able to experience all the measurements taken by local business and government – before it spread to my home country of Bolivia, inevitably making me compare the responses in both countries.
Something that positively surprised me was the prohibiting of cash in supermarkets and grocery stores in Spain. This action was taking by the store management, which back home is impossible since people rely on informal marketplaces to do their grocery shopping – with the sellers refusing to change their way of working. This could be a potential way of containing COVID19 and other viruses, however it appears that some affected countries do not have the means, resources or technology to adapt effectively.
The topic of eliminating cash has been around for some years but this could be an opportunity for financial institutions, such as banks, to educate and encourage people to start using technology and these digital tools to avoid spreading the virus.