When transferring money overseas, an obvious place to send it is to a bank account. But this isn’t always an option. While having access to a bank account is taken for granted in some countries, it’s not as common in others.
According the latest figures from the World Bank, two billion people around the world are ‘unbanked’ which means they don’t have a bank account. More than half of the unbanked live in South and East Asia and the Pacific region, with 21% in India, 12% in China and 6% in Indonesia. Sub- Saharan Africa accounts for 17% and 10% come from Latin America and the Caribbean.
So what alternatives are there?
Collect cash from an agent
One option is to send cash and the receiver can collect it from an agent at the other end. The advantages are clear- it’s a easy, instant and a convenient way of transferring money overseas.
However, the transaction should be as secure as possible to avoid fraud. After all, if you’re sending money to a family member back home, you want to make sure they receive it. When you use Xpress Money, we give you a 16-digit pin which you then share with the receiver. The receiver uses this pin to collect the money and must also show proof of identification.
Something to consider when sending cash is that the receiver has to be present to collect it from the agent. So the broader the network of agents, the more convenient it is for whoever you’re transferring money to. With over 180,000 agents spread across 160 countries, our extensive network means receiver usually don’t have far to travel.
Send directly to a mobile wallet
Another option is to transfer money directly to a mobile wallet. A mobile wallet is an app on a mobile device which stores money and makes payments. The receiver can then pay bills and make purchases in a shop from their phone, or withdraw the cash from an agent location. However, this service is limited to certain countries. When you use Xpress Money, you can send money to mobile wallets in Kenya through mPesa, Ghana with MTN and Pakistan via Telenor.
Deliver to the receiver’s door
To make life as easy as possible for the receiver, you can also arrange to have the money delivered to them directly, for example at home. To do this, you need to provide your IMTO with the receiver’s address. Once again, this service is only available in certain countries, such as Palestine, the Philippines, Vietnam and Egypt.
If you’re in the UK, then check out Xopoto, our mobile app which lets you transfer money anywhere in the world. The receiver can then collect it using the options listed above. The process is simple- download Xopoto from iTunes or Google Play, register and fill out the transaction details. You can pay through the app with a debit card.
To find out more about Xpress Money or to transfer money today, click here.