Do French shops still accept cash?

We are travelling to France soon. Is cash welcomed, or does everywhere prefer contactless payments as in the UK?

3 August 2020
By Brian McCulloch

There has been a huge increase in the use of contactless payments in France, to the point that people buying a loaf of bread in the bakers often use it. 

Most of these transactions are by card: for various reasons France is behind some other parts of the world in the use of mobile phone contactless payments, and people trying to use mobile phones in this way sometimes find they do not work.

But shops also still take cash, as they are obliged to by law. Most now use a system of trays for the cash to be handed over in an attempt to reduce contact and keep a distance between the shop keeper and client.

The use of cheques is declining but still common, especially in rural areas.

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