Gone are the days of direct debiting my bills, only having a debit card, or even using normal checks (not that I ever have.) This is because once someone knows your US bank account number, you're susceptible to fraud. My first few months here I used cash and paid my rent by cashiers cheque. I literally walked down to the bank and had them issue me a fresh paper cheque of their own which I then walked over to my landlord. For bills, cashiers cheques can also be ordered online and automatically printed and posted to your bill provider, which I think takes days. (At least that's how I think it works?)
Eventually I built up enough credit history to get a credit card, so I use that and no longer need to carry cash, but many Americans do not or can not. This is why those big stores having their credit card systems being hacked is such a big deal - debit cards have inferior fraud protection, and debit card consumers may be out of pocket for months as fraudulent transactions are is resolved.
Mind you, this is better than card-wary, cash-loving Japan, where ATMs close at night and on holidays. My recent trip to Berlin was also frustrating, as card payment is not as common as one might expect. Mind you, I'm not from a country that used to be fascist or experienced economic turmoil on the scales these countries have.
Having said that, I can pay by credit card everywhere, even the tiniest food trucks, and there is almost never any minimum spend, and extra fees for paying by credit are rare. Split billing at restaurants, usually refused in Western Australia, is also normal here, and very efficient.
Once again, this place, like all others, has both pros and cons.