I went to lunch with some friends last week. When we had finished and were walking to the car, we met a beggar. As we past him he asked us if we had any spare change. In this day of technical advances in payment options, I find that I almost never carry cash.
You can pay for almost anything with just the swipe of a card. There are still a few situations that this doesn't work in. (My daughter would tell you that the downside is that I don't always have cash when the ice cream truck comes down our street.)
So as I told this beggar that I didn't have any change I wondered if begging was now an outdated business model, like the newspaper or the RIAA. If more people are like me then it must be a lot harder to find people that are carrying loose change.
So here is the new business model for beggars. Carry a hand held credit card machine. It will make people like me feel less guilty for not having change on them, and its probably quicker to swipe my card than it is for me to dig through my pockets for some spare change. I think beggars would make more money per person as well. Who wants to swipe their card for something under a dollar?
If you become a millionare using this suggestion, send a few bucks my way.