The growth of the internet and subsequent explosion of devices such as tablets and mobile phones is paving the way for a possible future where cash is no longer needed, according to research.
A Visa study in Asia found that so-called 'Millennials' - people born in the latter decades of the 20th century - believe advancements in technology will one day enable them to carry out electronic payments for everything, including household bills, shopping and parcel delivery services.
The research, which included interviews with more than 5,500 young people across Asia, found that eight out of ten respondents think they will one day be able to do all their shopping and bill payments online.
Nearly three-quarters (73 per cent) predicted it will be possible to complete these tasks with a mobile phone.
Almost two-thirds (63 per cent) of young people in Asia - a region that often leads the world in technological innovations - already complete transactions on the internet using computers or laptops and a fifth (19 per cent) use mobiles, according to the poll.
Focusing on Hong Kong, Visa found that 57 per cent of 'Millennials' living in the city think they will one day live in a cashless society.
On average, young people living in Hong Kong set aside 12 per cent of their monthly income for internet shopping, with a large proportion of this amount going towards general shopping, entertainment and household items.
The study also revealed that this group used their mobile phones for social networking more than any other regional demographic.
Tom Tobin, country manager for Visa Hong Kong and Macau, said: "Hong Kong Millennials are high users of their mobile phones.
"We see a bright future for mobile phone and other device-based payments as more people adopt electronic payments around the world."
Recent figures from UK online retail industry association IMRG showed that in July 2012, Britons completed 365 per cent more transactions on mobile phones than in the same month last year.
Author: Paul Burn