Not long ago, the Payments Council was planning to 'do away with the cheque in 2018'. They've now cancelled that target, but the ongoing decline of the cheque is still pretty clear.
Fewer and fewer people see cheques as an important feature of banking, as the number of cheque payments being made keeps on dropping.
When they were at the peak of their popularity in 1990, around 4 billion payments were made via cheque, compared with just 1.4 billion in 2008. So, it's clear the need for a chequebook just isn't as great as it was back then - but, are there still people who simply don't want to see cheques 'chequing out'?
Well, after some research* into the current account features people want, we found that just 1 in 5 people would consider access to a chequebook a key feature when looking for a current account. But, while the majority aren't particularly interested in being given a chequebook, it seems that as age increases, so does people's fondness for cheques.
While just 3% of those aged 18-24 see a chequebook as an important current account feature, over 12 times as many people aged 65+ see it that way - 37% of our respondents in that age bracket felt cheques were important!
|% who see cheques as an important feature of a bank account||3%||9%||16%||19%||26%||37%|
So, it's clear there's still a desire for cheques out there, especially with older generations. The idea that older people are less keen on newer technologies has been thrown around quite a lot - and certain charities such as Help the Aged have been worried about how they'd cope with a cheque-free world.
But as the younger generations grow older, it does seem like cheques will have a smaller and smaller role to play. Could it be that future generations will only see chequebooks when they visit a museum?
Would you like to see the end of the cheque? Or do you think getting rid of cheques altogether will only cause unnecessary stress for those who do still use them? Whatever your stance on the future of the cheque, we'd love to hear it, and you can let us know via our Facebook, Twitter and Google+.
* Consumer Intelligence research carried out a survey of a representative sample of 2,202 UK adults from 31st July - 05th August 2013.