MOST OF US may think we are using fewer checks, Q: But hasn’t check use been on the decline for
but the reality is that most of us are still writing some time?
plenty. According to the Check Payment Systems A: Rumors of the check’s death have been
Association (CPSA), the vast majority of consumers greatly exaggerated. It may seem like check transac-still choose to write checks, making them the dom- tions occupy less space in your check register. The
inant form of non-cash payments. truth is that, even when given a number of payment
So before you write off the idea of using checks, options, many consumers still choose to write
you should know that there are still advantages to checks, making them the most popular and trusted
this old-fashioned method of payment. The CPSA form of non-cash payment in America.
provides the following Q&A on checks.
Q: Shouldn’t we be encouraging people to adopt
Q: Why should a consumer pay with a check? new electronic payment methods? Isn’t this better
A: Checks are a widely accepted form of payment for the consumer?
at the point of sale. And for merchants, the cost to A: If there is one thing consumers have
process a verified check per $100 is significantly less shown over the years it is that they want to have a
than for cash, off-line debit cards and credit cards. choice when it comes to payment options. Con-Checks are also the most popular payment method sumers choose to write checks because of their
for paying bills because they are almost always convenience, reliability and safety. Consumers—
accepted. The study also concluded that consumers not financial institutions—should be the ones
perceivecheckstobelow-costpaymentinstruments to decide what payment options works best in
that give them greater control over timing and pay- their lives.
ments and lead to better budgeting. —Mark E. Stroder
See the Wallet Full of
Savings coupon special:
receive 25 percent off
and Business and Gold
Star members receive
10 percent off all check
products through April 2,
2006. Visit costco.com,
click on “Services,“
then click on “Wallet
The show goes on
with Costco’s Online
COSTCO MEMBERS Tom and Darcie Hall always “Similar to the limited
wanted their teenage daughters, Courtney and availabilityof itemsinour
Samantha, to experience the magic of Broadway. warehouses, event tickets
“My wife and I wanted to take our girls on are also available on a lima memorable trip, and expose them to the wonders ited basis,” says Gayle Brask,
of a Broadway production,” says Hall, whose family Costco’s manager of mem-lives in Newark, Delaware. “And we wanted to do it ber services. “We recom-the right way, including great seats for a first-class mend that our members
show. Mamma Mia! seemed like the perfect choice. check back regularly to se e
“Unfortunately, the ticket prices were always the next great event we will
too expensive for a family of four.” be selling.”
Hall says ticket outlets were asking more than Gayle continues,
$1,000 for four tickets. But a visit to costco.com’s “It is our goal to negoti-Online Entertainment Ticketing service provided ate for the best events, Costco’s Online
an unexpected opportunity. and to provide the best Ticketing offers great
“We couldn’t believe it when we searched on price and seating so that seats to new events,
costco.com and found four tickets for the fifth row our members can afford to including Broadway’s
of Mamma Mia! for just $300,” Hall recalls. “It was go to entertainment events.” Sweeney Todd and
like a dream come true! And with the money we Tickets usually arrive Ring of Fire: The
saved, we even planned an extra night’s stay in New within five business days. Johnny Cash
York City.” There is also seven-days-per- Musical Show.
The Halls, and many other Costco members, week customer service.
have discovered that the show does go on—and at “The savings are unbeliev-incredible savings—thanks to Costco’s Online Enter- able,” says Hall. “And the seat The Costco Connection
tainment Ticketing. The service can save members selection is second to none. To For more information about Broadway
up to 45 percent off tickets and provide great seats get great seats for Broadway at shows and other entertainment events, visit
for Broadway shows, select sporting events, the cir- the price we paid is virtually costco.com, click on “Services,” then click on
cus and other family events. impossible.”—MES “Online Entertainment Ticketing.”