In another edition of things that slipped under the radar, BancABC increased the fee for its domestic remittance service City Hopper from 2% to 3%. As we learned during the course of this week, the price increase has been a reality for some time now. Judging by the lack of pitchforks and torches on social media it looks like many haven’t (like us) noticed or they are ok with it.
At this point, some of you might argue that a price increase is never a good thing and you would be right. Incomes in Zimbabwe have continued to dwindle in comparison to the escalating cost of goods and services. This is made worse by the high demand for US dollars in the market because of its stability in relation to the local currency.
To have a service like BancABC’s City Hopper increase its fee might look like taking money out of people’s pockets. However, even at 3%, it’s still far cheaper than the alternatives on the domestic remittance space. Mukuru, one of City Hopper’s, competitors is charging 7% which is astronomical compared to what BancABC is asking of its customers even after the fee increase.
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The other alternative is to send the money with a runner or someone you know who might be travelling in that direction. But the problem with that is you can’t always be guaranteed that the money will get there at all, either in part or in full.
Remittance services are a necessary evil in some respects. Your money will get to its recipient but like all things, there is a small fee to pay for the convenience and security.