Amazon just made it easier for cash-only customers to use its marketplace. With Amazon Cash, you can add money directly into your account, no bank accounts or cards necessary.
With Cash, a cashier at a participating store will scan your barcode, which you either print out or have on your phone. You pay the amount in-store, and that amount will be added to your Amazon account balance.
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Before now, it’s been difficult to transfer cash directly into your Amazon account. Most people would settle for buying themselves Amazon gift cards. Cash provides a more direct (and less lonely) option.
According to Amazon’s FAQ, one barcode will work for all locations. There are no fees, and the funds will be available “immediately after the cashier hands you a receipt for your transaction.”
Amazon isn’t the first online service to find ways around banks. PayPal has a similar system that allows you to refill your account at a register, as well as a newly-acquired online bill-paying service.
Cash will be available at certain US retailers at launch, including CVS, Speedway, and Sheetz. Amazon says more stores will follow.