Recently, GCash announced a new convenience fee for cashing in using linked Visa/MasterCard bank cards. Much as GCash would like to maintain Cash-in transactions free of charge, this move by card payment partners makes it no longer possible to do so. As a result, GCash users will now be charged with a 2.58% convenience fee for every cash-in transaction using Visa/Mastercard bank card starting July 6, 2020. These are actually pass-on fees by GCash’s card payment partners.For example, if you cash-in Php100 you will be charged Php102.58 in your bank statement.
It would appear in your statement that the amount was charged by GCash, but the added fees actually go directly to the card payment partners. GCash doesn’t profit or gain anything from the convenience fee. Again these are pass-on fees by GCash’s card payment partners.As a consumer the implementation of this new convenience feels ill-timed. Everyone is still reeling from the economic effects of the pandemic and charges like these are added burdens on our budget. It’s a good thing that GCash still has charge free options for their cash-in transactions.
Free Cash-in Options from GCash
GCash users need not worry about paying charges for cash-in transactions because there are still plenty of ways to cash-in for free.
GCash users may still cash-in to their GCash account for free via linked BPI or UnionBank accounts. Linking your BPI or Unionbank accounts makes it easier and more convenient for you to add funds in your GCash account because they are now directly linked. You can cash-in anytime anywhere FREE of charge!It’s so easy to link your accounts. Just click here for BPI and here for Unionbank and follow the instructions on the page.
Please note that there is a difference between card linking and bank account linking. Bank cards that utilize the Visa or Mastercard networks are used in card linking. Bank account linking directly links your GCash account to your bank account. This means no third parties involved and transactions are directly between your bank and GCash. Only cash-in transactions via Visa and Mastercard networks are subjected to pass-on fees by GCash’s card payment partners.
GCash Users may also cash-in for free using the InstaPay app or network. InstaPay provides services that allow you to electronically transfer funds between banks. Most banks in the country have InstaPay so your bank is likely to have one too. Here is how you can cash-in for free using InstaPay.
GCash as a competitive mobile wallet despite the pass-on fees by GCash’s card payment partners
The imposition of a convenience fee for cash-in transactions via Visa and Mastercard network is definitely not welcome news for GCash users. But it is not enough to discourage people from patronizing GCash. It is still one of the most competitive mobile wallets in the country. Here is why:
- Despite the pass-on fees by GCash’s card payment partners, the convenience fee for Visa or Mastercard cash-in transactions is still lower than what other mobile wallets charge, where a flat rate of P30 is charged for each cash-in transaction, especially those below Php1,000.
- FREE Cash-in transactions is still available in 70,000 partner merchants nationwide.
- FREE Cash-in transactions can be availed by GCash users with linked bank accounts and those who transact via InstaPay.
- GCash users are able to enjoy value added services like no other. These include GCredit, GSave, and GInvest.
- GCash offers convenience in bills payment and bank transfers. No need to go out and endure long queues to manage your financial responsibilities.
The ease, convenience, and safety offered by GCash is still more valuable than the pass-on fees by GCash’s card payment partners. By giving GCash users plenty of alternatives to Cash-in for free, the impact of the convenience fee to GCash users becomes very minimal.