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Send Money Home from South Africa to Zimbabwe with Mukuru and Inter Africa

Thursday, April 15th, 2010

Exciting things are happening in the world of money transfer from South Africa to Zimbabwe, thought it might be time for an update on the fastest way to get CASH to Zim from South Africa without a bank account. As I mentioned before, InterAfrica is offering an amazing service that requires the least effort on your end to make money orders to Zimbabwe from South Africa. There are so many Zimbabweans living and working in South Africa, this remittance channel is going to be so popular.

What is InterAfrica?

Inter Africa Bureau De Change is licensed by the South African Reserve Bank as an Authorised Dealer in Foreign Currency with Limited Authority (ADLA). Under their license they can process transactions for individuals, related to their Single Discretionary Allowance, as prescribed by the Exchange Control Rulings.

InterAfrica can also assist with:

•    sale and purchase of foreign bank notes
•    sale and purchase of travellers cheques
•    sale of TravelWallet
•    sending and receiving of telegraphic transfers
•    online ordering

How does it work then? How do I send money to Zimbabwe from South Africa?

The first and most complicated step is visiting your nearest InterAfrica branch. They are located throughout South Africa and opening new locations in Johannesburg and Cape Town soon! Here is a map of the InterAfrica branch locations. Travel with your PASSPORT; PROOF OF INCOME; and PROOF OF RESIDENCE; and of course the cash you want to send to Zimbabwe.

Once you’ve registered, you’re official. You can then call up their office and place orders for money to be transferred to Zimbabwe at anytime. A confirmation will be sent to your mobile with the InterAfrica bank account details, where you can deposit your order at the nearest FNB office. Likewise, an SMS will be sent to your friends and family in Zimbabwe with instructions on how to collect the cash that you’ve sent in a secure and let’s not forget, INSTANT  way. This is an amazing partnership between InterAfrica and Mukuru, an online money transfer business that specialises in sending money to South Africa and Zimbabwe. Mukuru offers online ordering and a helpful call centre for the lowest rates I’ve encountered. What a pair!

Send Money Home Today

Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

How do I send money home today? Here are the basics to making sure your money transfer gets to where you need it to be TODAY:

  1. Go to Mukuru.com and sign up as a new User (make sure to note your affiliate code to give to friends and family to earn credit on your next order and theirs). OR Call their office and speak with someone who can place an order in just a few minutes.
  2. Decide if you’d like your family or friends to collect US$ or Rand when they pick up their cash.
  3. Enter the amount you’d like to send or have received and calculate the currency exchange.
  4. Choose the bank and branch you’d like your family or friends to collect their cash.
  5. Enter your card details.
  6. An email and SMS confirmation will be sent to you, and an SMS voucher will be sent to your family or friends who can go to the specified bank and collect their cash. SORTED!

Other options to consider are going to your nearest InterAfrica branch or Western Union office, but the above example is the fastest way to get your money transfered to Zimbabwe.

    How Much are you Paying in FEES?

    Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

    Sending money home shouldn’t be as expensive as you might think. It is important to do a little comparison of fees for different services; even among online money transfer companies the fee (and not to mention the exchange rate) can range widely (we’re talking nearly nothing to upwards of 25 GBP). Make sure you’re getting the most for your money! When looking for an online money transfer company you should be able to clearly find the fees and exchange rate on their site: it should be obvious how much you’re being charged for a transaction and how quickly your money will be received. If you’re guessing about how much will show up on your bank statement you won’t feel safe about sending money online.

    Here is a clear example of a trustworthy and clear website offering money transfers home. The rates are obvious and BEFORE you place your order, the currency calculator allows you to enter the amount you want your loved ones in South Africa to receive, and then highlights the fee that you will also be responsible for (in this case, just 3 GBP). Sending money to home TODAY doesn’t have to be a guessing game.

    Send Money Home without a Bank

    Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

    Have you seen those advertisements around Cape Town, South Africa about “not needing a bank to send money back home to your loved ones,” promoting the money transfer services through ShopRite. Now I have been in the queues in ShopRite with people waiting to send money or collect money from their loved ones abroad. Sure you can send money home without a bank, but what a time commitment! A few lessons to learn:

    Sure you can send money home to Zimbabwe without the use of a bank.

    OR you could save time and get a better rate by going online (or calling an online money transfer company that sends money to Zim). Once you send money home online once and Register yourself, you make it that much easier to transfer money with just a few clicks or a simple phone call! Some online companies are even geared for support and service through Skype.

    You can check the exchange rates online throughout the day to get the best deals. When you’ve been waiting in a long line at the shops you’re just desperate to get the process over with, sacrificing time and money! Be smart about sending money to Zimbabwe– make sure the majority of your money gets to Zim, not spent on the money transfer process!

    Sending money online is also rewarding experience for your friends and family. Look for affiliate programs to save even more when you tell a friend about how much money and time you saved by sending money to Zimbabwe online! The online money transfer companies that I know of that have loyalty programs are Moneybookers, and Mukuru.  The latter offers a new pyramid scheme allowing for growing tiers of savings. From the looks of it, you could be earning savings on sending money to Zimbabwe from friends of friends of friends. Not surprising that sending money online has the potential to connect Zimbabweans around the world.

    Money Transfer from South Africa to Zimbabwe

    Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

    Are you a Zimbabwean living in South Africa looking for the best way to send money home today? If you’re feeling hesitant about using online money transfer companies (although there are some respected online options), you might consider using InterAfrica, which is one of the few licensed money transfer companies for sending money from South Africa to Zimbabwe. InterAfrica offers a store-front model with locations in Pretoria, Limpopop, Pietermaritzburg, Big Bay, Lephalale, Durban, Hoedspruit, and the North West Province. Find the addresses for your nearest InterAfrica branch here.

    Sending money to Zimbabwe from South Africa has just entered a new, easier phase. Thanks to InterAfrica branches throughout South Africa, you can go to the shop ONCE to send money home to Zimbabwe, and then all future remittances can be sent over the phone, by calling their offices. InterAfrica is one of the few registered money transfer companies within South Africa granted permission to send money to Zimbabwe.

    Once you go to one of these locations with your ID and proof of residence and make your first order– you are an official customer and can send money to Zimbabwe instantly, again and again.

    Looks like this plan is going to be a huge success, making sending money home, instantly, a convenient reality for those living in South Africa! Word on the grape vine is that branches are planned to open in Johannesburg and Cape Town city in order to make that first trip (the only one!) easier. Very soon, in addition to locations throughout the Northwest, Limpopo and Pretoria provinces, sending money to Zim is going to be just a phone call away.

    Although I still might recommend sending money to Zim online, this is going to be a real option for those looking for alternatives!

    Remittances: Send Groceries and Fuel

    Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

    Sometimes the most useful remittances don’t come in the form of sending money home, but in sending food and groceries or even paying bills for loved ones.

    Some services make it easy to also send fuel, groceries, and even pay DsTv bills in Zimbabwe, for example. Putting your money toward these goods and services streamlines the aid process. Mukuru.com has been featured as one of the most innovative companies providing this service in several publications in the UK.

    How do you send fuel to Zim? Once you set up an account with Mukuru online you can choose the amount of fuel you’d like to send and the location where it will be picked up.  As soon as you pay for your order, an SMS will be sent to your Zim recipient’s phone, and they can go immediately to a collection point to grab their Redan coupons. According to their website the more you buy the lower the rates are too.

    How do you send groceries to Zim?  Ensure the money you send home is spent on food by sending your relative a SPAR voucher. Mukuru has coverage at the Arundel Spar in Harare, where vouchers for $20, $50, $100 can be collected. Sending groceries to Zim has never been simpler.

    How do you pay for DsTv in Zim? Mukuru lets you either pay for a month of DsTv or 12 months (11 plus one free) through their website. Once you’ve been in touch with your family and friends back home, got their account number and smart card number you can give them the gift of DsTv online.

    How do you pay bills in Zimbabwe?

    Some money transfer companies are set up to help you pay bills in Zimbabwe in addition to sending money and groceries back home. If your family is in Harare, you can transfer funds to cover Property Tax, Refuse Collection, and even pay Water bills online once you know their account numbers.

    Similarly, you can settle your bill with Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA), Tel One, or pay your Zimbabwe Online (ZOL) Payments simply and easily online today. Mukuru.com has got this system pretty much figured out, collecting all of these services in one place. Sorted!

    Sending Money Home Today: FAQ

    Thursday, April 1st, 2010

    Before starting to send money home make sure all of your questions are answered and you feel comfortable with the service you’re using to transfer money. Transferring money home can be an intimidating process, but once you decide on the path and equip yourself with a few informational tools transferring money can be simple, easy, and INSTANT.

    Here is an example from start to finish with all of your questions answered. Let’s look at the process of sending money to Zimbabwe from the UK as it is a popular and growing remittance corridor.

    What does it mean to Send Money to Zimbabwe?

    Money transfer is a form of remittance from a foreign worker back to his or her home country.  Many Zimbabweans have moved to the UK because of economic and political reasons and are actively sending money back to Zim to support family and friends in the recovery and development of their home. The role of remittances in development is a major talking point for scholars and economists, but the bottom line is that the Zimbabwe corridor is active and sustaining many families back home.

    How do I send money to Zimbabwe? What are my options?

    Transferring money to Zimbabwe can happen in a few different ways:

    1. Retail Money Transfer: One of the big-hitter names in retail money transfer is Western Union, which allows money transfer without an account with Western Union or any financial institution. Western Union is wide-spread and recently reopened their Zimbabwe remittance corridor, but have also received criticism, including links to terrorism, for their lack of security and high fees. With Western Union you get the brand-name with a huge cost.
    2. Bank Transfer: If you have a bank account and the person you’re sending money to in Zim has a bank account then sending money though your financial institution is also an option. An expensive option. An expensive option that can take up to a week to come through.
    3. Send Money Online: Sending money online to Zimbabwe allows people to send money at lower fees and do not require a physical location or branch. Often sending money through online companies can save time and money.

    Okay, it sounds like sending money online is the fastest and cheapest way to get money to Zimbabwe, but how are they really cheaper than going to the shop?

    1. Well, the online firm doesn’t have to pay a portion of the transaction to that corner-store agent, doesn’t have to kit out that agent with systems or training, and doesn’t have to do the same on the cash collection side – where your relative uses the funds.
    2. You also are able to repeat old orders easily online – it’s totally geared for it. Whereas a corner store, each time you walk in, you’re doing it from scratch. Not to mention how much time is wasted waiting in queues!
    3. Often online companies offer loyalty programs, connecting families and friends by offering monetary incentives and savings.

    But is it safe to send money online to Zimbabwe??

    Sending money to Zim should be a safe and simple process– that’s why sending money online just makes sense. Make sure when you exchange your money you are getting the best deal, without compromising securitySend money home and Money Move are two a helpful forums for information on migrant remittances, but when one is looking to send money to Zimbabwe, certain safety tips should be considered:

    — How long have they been doing business for? Make sure the company has a respected trading history and are registered on company house.

    — Are they supported by respected banking partners? Does the money transfer company work with names and companies you recognize and trust?

    — Do they use Verified credit card technology, such as 3-D secure? Are they clear about following national and international laws, such as requiring certified copies of identification cards?

    — Check to see if the organization is authorized. If the company is based in the UK they should be regulated by the FSA, for instance, maintaining consumer protection, public awareness, and the reduction of financial crimes.

    So sending money online to Zimbabwe can be safe and cheap. Any suggestions?

    Before transferring money home it is important to do a little research, comparing prices and fees for different remittance services, in order to get the most for your transaction. Here are a few resources that I’ve found helpful in familiarizing oneself with the process and pricing matrix surrounding transferring money to Zimbabwe  and around the world.

    Wait, what is your favourite way to send money home to Zimbabwe?

    My favourite way to send money to Zimbabwe is through a company called Mukuru.com, established 2004 seems to be one of the easiest and most affordable services to send money back to Zimbabwe. The fresh company was established by Zimbabweans living in the UK who were looking for an innovative and simple way to transfer money to Zimbabwe.  Cash collection is immediately available at local bank branches, as vouchers are sent by SMS– connecting Africa in the most inclusive way.

    These guys have also mastered the ease of money transfer to Zimbabwe by making it as simple as possible to send money home instantly. Unlike the “cornershop model” of bigger businesses, where each time you want to send money back you have to start from scratch, Mukuru welcomes you into their secure system to allow repeat transactions occur seamlessly.

    Mukuru.com has also proven to be a respected trailblazer in the remitting of goods and services, such as offering the option to send fuel, groceries, or even pay DsTV bills for friends and family members back home. Mukuru seems to have gone where very few money transfer companies are willing to go; when sending money to Zim, best to put faith in those who know.