This week's talking point is cashless society. Before getting together with the members of your conversation group, go over the questions below so that ideas come to mind more easily the day you get together with your friends and you can work out vocabulary problems beforehand.
Think of things you’ve bought in the past week. Why did you buy them? How did you pay for them?
What does the expression ‘Money doesn’t grow on trees?’ mean?
When do people say it?
Do you and your family have a weekly budget?
Do you know the typical interest rate on your credit cards?
Do you try to put aside savings? If so, how often? If not, why not?
Do you feel that you know how to make investments?
Have you ever taken out a loan? If so, what for?
Who do/would you turn to for advice before making an investiment?
We seem to be getting close to living in a ‘cashless society’, where all payments are made by putting a plastic card into a machine and entering our pin code, or by simply waving the card in front of the machine. What are the advantages and disadvantages of a ‘cashless society’ as opposed to the traditional ‘paper money’? You can talk about convenience, health (bacteria in notes), saving/spending, crime/dishonesty.
Do you agree with the statements below? Explain your reasons.
Which advice do you think is most relevant?
1 The reason people get into financial trouble is that they’re not taught how to manage personal finance. This needs to be introduced as a subject in schools.
2 Financial experts tend to oversell the need to save money. They forget that people need to enjoy life and that often means spending money.
3 There are too many financial experts saying too much about personal finance. This doesn’t help, it just creates confusion and people feel under pressure.
4 A lot of people are so obsessed with their personal wealth that they forget about giving money to charities that can help people who are less fortunate.