Coin Shortage a Result of Pandemic

Have you noticed that there is a national coin shortage?  At first, Tom and I didn’t because we weren’t going anywhere and spending any money.  If we bought stuff, we would get it online and pay with a credit card.

Once we noticed the coin shortage and started paying with cash at drive-up windows, we saw signs that asked us to please pay with exact change.  We are happy to do that, and when we can’t we tell them to “keep the change.”  We don’t really want lots of coins touched by others anyway.

An article in the Washington Post says that there isn’t a coin shortage as much as there is a bottleneck.  A shortage would imply the coins are not available.  Instead, they are in people’s homes as spending habits have changed abruptly in a short time.  More people are paying with credit cards and so people just aren’t using the change they have laying around.  I’ve seen several drive-throughs that have signs asking people to pay with exact change or credit card.

Laundromats and fast food restaurants have been especially hard hit by the coin shortage.  Some Chick-fil-A’s were actually offering free sandwiches if you brought in so much change.  I expected the coin shortage to ease as people got out more, but it seems to still be a problem.  This sign was at our local Home Depot, which surprised me because I assumed that most people who buy things at Home Depot will use a credit card.  But maybe most people don’t have to spend the amount we did last month.

You can’t blame the coin shortage on me.  I have less than $1 in coins in my purse and that is all I have.  How about you?  Are you holding on to your change?  Maybe you should consider passing it along!