It is hard to believe this but two years ago all you needed to pay your Netflix subscription was Ecocash. Signing up for the service was a trivial matter of entering your email, putting in your password and clicking the register button. Upon being prompted for payment method you could just generate a VCN and enter the payment details sent to you by Ecocash.
These days things are a lot more complicated and this is mostly because you will need a card (Visa/MasterCard) that can make international payments and these are not easy to come buy. With the separation of RTGS and FCA balances virtually all banks require you to preload your card with actual forex.
This makes paying for Netflix a complex series of steps that might see you breaking the law. Cards.co.zw is a site that aims to resolve the illegal step of getting forex to preload your card part by eliminating it. The site is selling Netflix gift cards in bond notes.
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The devil is in the details
Currently Cards.co.zw is selling two gift cards. $25 Netflix cards and $15 Audible cards. The Netflix card is priced at $75 while the audible card is $45. This is at par with the current black market rate where each real USD is selling for $3 bond notes.
At first glance there seems to be no real advantage to buying the gift cards but here is the thing. Buying these cards on cards.co.zw is technically not illegal under Zimbabwean law as far as I know. Buying forex on the black market is illegal that much I know, you can get sentences of 2-10 years if you are caught doing so.
So buying the cards on this site eliminates the risk of you engaging in a known illegal activity. There is also the part where you save yourself the effort of consciously looking for someone to do the forex trade with. Also using the gift cards means you will not have to worry about the transaction costs of actually paying for Netflix. Transaction costs are around 50 cents but that translates to a loaf of bread if we go by black market rates.
Potential drawbacks of using Gift Cards to pay for Netflix
As someone I told about this site pointed out the card is weirdly denominated compared to what Netflix costs. The cheapest package costs $8 and 8 is not perfect factor of 25. Nor are 10 and 12 factors of 25. This means if you use this card there will be messy rounding offs down the line no matter which package you choose to subscribe to.
Then there is the fact that you cannot, as far as I know, use the card to pay for your existing Zimbabwean Netflix account. You will have to create a U.S account and hope they will not ask you for a U.S payment method. According to the Netflix website all you need to create a US account redeem your card is an email nd ZIP code.
Which brings up another problem. US Netflix is expensive when compared to Zimbabwean account. In fact if you opt for the US premium account the card will only be able to pay for only one month subscription as it costs $13.99! Two months would require two gift cards and result in left overs because again 13 is not a factor of 50.