Over the last 16 years, I've circulated hundreds of dollar coins, probably over a thousand by now (I've kept some of the empty wrappers, as you can see in the photo).
For the same reason that the Canadians and all of Europe has used a coin for their single monetary unit. That's because paper dollar bills wear out in about 2 years or less. Coins will last 30 to 40 years before they wear out.
1. In 1979 the mint designed a dollar coin that was very similar to the US quarter. They were the same color, had the same kind of reeded (ridged) edge, and were just slightly larger in size (which was done to lower the cost of converting vending machines and parking meters, etc. to accept them). Naturally, the public was upset when getting them mixed up with quarters, thus spending a dollar by accident and losing 75¢ in the process. However, since 2000, newer coins have been minted. They are a different color and have a smooth or embossed edge. They look and feel very different from quarters. If you can tell the difference between a dime and a penny, you won't mistake a dollar from a quarter. If you find an old one in a roll, don't spend it, just take it back to the bank.
2. We have the perception that they are too heavy. Sure, a single dollar coin is heavier than a paper dollar. But 4 quarters are heaver than a single dollar coin, so if you are using a coin operated device, they weigh less! On average, most people are carrying only 3 dollar bills at a time, so the actual weight is negligible, when compared to all the other items most people carry around with them. They are much easier to use in vending machines than paper money, which often gets creased and dog-eared. They never stick together, even when brand new, so they're easier to count.
So, if you want to start using dollar coins, where do you start?
1. Ask for a roll at the bank window, keep it at home, and take a few around with you and spend them wherever you use cash. Replenish them in your wallet or purse when you return home.
2. If you don't have any on you, and you're purchasing something with cash, ask for them in change. Let the retailer know that you like using them. They might not have any to give you,
3. Ask local government to install parking meters. etc. that can accept dollar coins. Ask anywhere cash is used, such as for vending machines, coin laundries, etc. Write letters to the editor, comment on blogs, on social media, etc. that you are in favor of using dollar coins. Feel free to post the URL of this blog entry as widely as possible.
Our trees, lakes, and rivers ... and taxpayers ... will thank you.