Sending Money To Mobile Phones
The new mobile money transfer service recently introduced by WorldRemit allows migrants from the Horn of Africa to send money from the comfort of their home or office directly to mobile phones of friends and relatives back home.
Currently they have to travel long distances to their nearest agent to send money. Not only is this expensive due to travel costs, but can be very time consuming often involving taking time off work.
At they payout side recipients also need to travel and queue up to collect money from an agent. Furthermore, carrying large amounts of cash by hand poses security risk for recipients in many African countries.
Transferring money directly to mobile phone accounts in an important development that will have positive implication for the livelihoods of poor people who rely on international remittances.
For the first time recipients can receive small amounts on their mobile account. Difficulty in obtaining small dollar denominations at payout locations meant that migrants could only send round figures of fifty and one hundred dollars.
Recipients can use the money in their mobile account to directly pay at local shops and businesses which are enabled to accept mobile money payments, and therefore there is no need to hand-carry large sums of money around.
The move towards "cashless" economies in parts of Africa means that mobile money transfer makes complete sense. When you sign up for an WorldRemit account you will soon realise the benefits of sending money online and wonder why you wasted all that time to visit and queue at agents with incovenient and irregular opening hours.