EcoCash FCA now cheaper to use, no more cash in/cash out taxes

Leonard Sengere Avatar

The domestic remittance playing field has been leveled. The regulations that only applied to EcoCash have been repealed.

Earlier this week we talked about how crazy it was that only EcoCash had to collect 4% tax on cash-ins and cash-outs. The bizarre scenario meant we were paying close to 12% of the transaction amount to the government every time we sent money on EcoCash.

That made EcoCash much more expensive than the competition. It was especially noticeable when the fan favourite InnBucks relaunched and didn’t have to collect the 4% tax that crazy way.

Fortunately, the regulators have found it within their hearts to change that. EcoCash will now only have to collect 4% IMT Tax when money is sent. Cashing in is now free and cashing out now only carries a 1.7% charge.

New EcoCash tariffs

EcoCash ChargeIMTT
Send Money1.3%4%
Cash Out1.7%Free
Airtime (up to US$5)FreeFree
Airtime (above US$5)Free4%

This means when you send money to a recipient who then cashes out, the total you pay in charges and taxes is 7%. This is exactly what you pay when using InnBucks, 7%. Meaning between these two, the only consideration is which one has an outlet closest to you.

The difference is that InnBucks charges 1% to send and 2% to cash out. Whilst EcoCash does a 1.3/1.7% split. In either case, there’s no sugarcoating it – sending USD using formal channels is expensive. The government’s 4% cut is just too high.

The government makes more from these transactions than the service providers. I do not know how you define excessive taxation but I think we can agree that this is a ridiculous situation.

It is intentional. They said the 4% is meant to discourage the use of the USD and promote the use of the ZWD.

The tax has done nothing of the sort and it never will. When they announced this we all thought, oh silly regulator, that won’t work. Now, I’m starting to think, that was just a diversion story, it was all about increasing tax.

The vouchers still exist

EcoCash introduced vouchers through which users could avoid paying the excessive IMTT situation discussed above. If you use the vouchers you will still pay 7% in charges and taxes.

So, the advice we gave earlier is no longer solid. Vouchers are no longer a better option.

I don’t know how the vouchers are going to catch on, now that regular old EcoCash costs the same.

See, I don’t imagine even EcoCash was ecstatic about introducing the voucher. They already had a service that customers were familiar with.

Why would they want to confuse people with a new remittance product that did the same thing? When people hear the name ‘EcoCash’ there is a certain image that comes to mind and it involves cashing in and out.

The tax situation forced their hand and they had to push the voucher. Judging from my circles, people had not gotten their heads around the vouchers. It doesn’t matter now. The message now is that EcoCash FCA is a solid option in the USD remittance game again.

Also read:

4% forex tax & withdrawal levy: Forever banishing the idea of banking USD

If you’re sending USD don’t cash into EcoCash, use the vouchers instead

InnBucks is back as a bank, is it still as low cost as it was before?



  1. Nyasha

    Yesterday I received the SMS Below

    Great news! EcoCash USD Cash-In is NOW FREE! Visit any nearest EcoCash outlet and transact. Dial *153# now to access your USD wallet. Ts & Cs apply.,

    THAT’S NOT GREAT NEWS! It’s a no brainer that Cash in should be free

  2. Captain Jack Sparrow

    There is a way to circumvent the system and do remittance absolutely free. It entails the person you are sending money having an account with any soccer betting shops and an internet connection. You just enter the particular betting shop deposit the money in his account send him the voucher number,finito he is able to cash out without any tax deductible. To remove suspicion the recipient can just bet a dollar on a live match kkkkkkk This is our secret fellow geeks been using it for the past year…

    1. King

      I thought I was the only one doing this 🀣🀣

      1. Captain Jack Sparrow

        😁😁😁 for local transfers we are covered, for international I am trying to figure out how I can play around with Facebook pPay….any suggestions King

    2. Thanos

      Interesting πŸ€”πŸ€”πŸ€” now the secret is out Mthuli will launch a S.I policy to stop that 🀣

    3. Tops

      Asi sparrow ko sei kuisa secret panze iwewe…usadaro mhani

    4. Tkt

      Haaa wangu, waku bhaiza manje, even paEcocash apo, same story
      Get into the shop, make a cash in directly into the recipient’s account the same way you do kuma banks
      Then he meets only the 1.7%
      eg directly make a deposit of 102USD, they pay 1.7 to get 100 and the remain with 0.30usd kin their accounts
      Which is the reason why NETONE says theirs is free to send they looked at it closely vakagara vaisa yekusenda+ withdraw pamwe chete
      What I mean is, ECOCASH is the CHEAPEST way to send at ONLY 1.7%
      This is how I’ve been sending money even during the 12% era
      In Aim if you don’t play around Arithmetically uno chema

      1. Tkt

        …. In Zim…..

    5. Anonymous

      Kkkkk this is genius

  3. Imi Vanhu Musadaro

    Was the regulation removed, because there would an RBZ notice to that effect. Or, was Ecocash just making off with peoples money.

  4. Mercy

    Great analysis, maybe you can also do competition watch for bank remittances and MFIs who have lower charges from as little as 1.5% to 5%. Those institutions don’t have the 4% tax

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