Manila, Philippines
geri@investmoney.com.ph

Send and Receive Money During Quarantine – Use Online Banking and Mobile Wallets

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I lost count already. Are we in what day of the enhanced community quarantine? Day 19?

Are you running out of things to do, to keep yourself busy and to avoid boredom? Try these money management activities during quarantine.

Now, I want to talk about leveling up your cash flow management, in case you haven’t. Leveling up in terms of using online / mobile banking and the use of mobile / digital wallets, in case you haven’t. During normal days, you’ll realize how convenient and easy it is to send and receive money via online or mobile. More so during quarantines and lockdowns, when movement of people (and of banks and stores) are significantly limited.

Nowadays, most basic things can already be done online. You can order food and groceries via Grab, Food Panda, Metromart, etc.You can watch movies and TV series online via Netflix, iFlix, HBO Go, Disney +, Hooq, etc. You can shop clothes, household items, even appliances via Lazada, Shoppee or brand flagship online stores. Your news and entertainment are also mostly online – social media, YouTube, TikTok, what have you.

So should your cash management, your sending and receiving money. It should be online, it should be mobile. It should not be limited to going to and from bank branches. Extremely helpful especially during this time of community lockdown. Even during quarantine and lockdowns, your money should be able to go to and from intended destinations.

Send Money Within The Same Bank

They say less than 5% of Filipinos have bank accounts. That is a sad reality. And within this small segment, a much smaller population have online and mobile banking with their bank accounts. Most big banks right now already have online / mobile banking — which means you can access your money and account via online (internet) or using your mobile phone (mobile data + bank app). And yes it is safe and secure if done right. No need to go to the branches as frequent as before!

If you haven’t done this yet, do it now (assuming you can complete the whole process via online and you bank supports online / mobile banking registration at times like this). You just need to create an account with user name and password and have your ATM ready. Follow the steps provided by your bank and soon enough you can access your bank account online. For the app, look for your bank’s mobile app in Google Playstore or App Store (for Apple).

Once you have this you can easily send money to people who also have accounts with the same bank – your relatives, dependents if you’re a breadwinner, payroll of your employees etc. In fact you can also pay bills using online / mobile banking, such as utilities, cable, internet, postpaid plans, credit cards, etc. For some banks, you can even open a UITF or time deposit via online / mobile. No need to go to the branch! Especially helpful during this quarantine when you can’t be with your extended families in the provinces.

I am amazed at how many people still prefer to line up and spend time paying their bills in banks or bills payment, when it can be easily done online. And mind you, I’m not referring to those who are senior citizens who are a bit techno-phobic, or to those who are unbanked. I’m referring to yuppies, millennials, the working class who are more tech-savvy. I guess they just don’t want to try or explore because it is outside their comfort zone. But they’re missing out on a lot of comfort once they find out the many things that can be done online.

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Send Money to Other Banks

The first step above is crucial because once you have online / mobile access to your bank account, and you are able to send money within the same bank, chances are that online banking / mobile app also supports sending money to other banks! Yes, this is now possible! No need to withdraw via ATM or via branch, and go to the nearest branch of the other bank to deposit. This is quite tedious with or without quarantine, don’t you think? Do it online or via mobile app!

Make use of PesoNet or InstaPay. And during this time of ECQ, bank transfer fees are waived. Find out here how PesoNet and InstaPay can make your cash management and your life much easier.

Again very helpful when you send money to relatives or suppliers and other cash recipients.

Speaking of bank apps, more and more banks are also allowing savings account opening via mobile. No need to go to the branch to open a bank account! There are also banks that allow check deposits by just taking a picture of it. We should maximize these advancements!

Send and Receive Money via Mobile Wallets

The first two items above are premised upon the fact that you have bank accounts, and I hope you do. If you don’t have a bank account yet (whether for payroll or your personal savings), then maybe you’ll consider opening a mobile wallet instead. This can be done in a jiffy! Just a few steps, take a selfie, a pic of your ID, fill up information and voila! The top two in the country are GCash and PayMaya. Similar to banks’ apps, these mobile wallets can make your life a lot easier!

During ECQ, replenishment of money in the ATMs is also delayed as banks are working on skeletal manpower. Lines in ATMs are very long since not all machines have cash, and obviously people are running out of cash already since it’s been 19 days since the lockdown. If you have mobile wallets and you’ll be doing grocery, check if your supermarket is accepting GCash or Paymaya because if yes, then you don’t need to withdraw! You can instead “cash-in” by encoding your ATM details in GCash and the money from your ATM shall be transferred to your mobile wallet. Again, this is safe and secure as long as you also secure your mobile phone with a PIN or biometrics.

You can also send money to relatives in the provinces if they also have these mobile wallets. I wish more and more people will consider this. Especially now when lines in remittance centers are also very long. If the money will be used for groceries anyway, senders may instead send to GCash or Paymaya of their recipients. Recipients can then just pay via QR code when they do grocery.

You can pay bills, or send money to banks using these mobile wallets. Other options to put money into your mobile wallet aside from cashing in from your ATM is via convenience stores or Bayad Centers. So maybe the next time you line up in a Bayad Center, do consider putting cash into your mobile wallet as well so that moving forward, you can use it to pay bills.

At this point of course, not all merchants and transactions accept mobile wallets yet. One will still need cash for certain transactions. But the point is, if we can minimize the transactions that need cash, if we can level up our financial transactions to as mobile and as online as possible, then there will be less need for actual cash, less need to line up to the ATM. Less need to carry bundles of cash in your wallet (which can be a covid19 carrier by the way), the less time we spend outside.

Level up your finances and cash management by maximizing the advantages and convenience of using online / mobile banking and mobile wallets.

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