I don’t think I have ever been to a bank in the past…. 3 years or more. I stopped going to the bank way back when you had to queue for hours and hours to get your money as if you were begging for a handout… I wrote Of Queue Waiting in 2017 while standing in line at an ATM.
The few Zim dollars that were in that account eventually just got chipped away with bank charges until there was a negative balance and eventually the bank account just got shut down. How have I been surviving without a bank account? Good question, mattress banking and mobile money wallets.
Would have been perfectly fine too until occasion called for me to have a bank account asap, so I had to go bank hunting. Can you imagine the hoops banks will have you jump backwards to open an account, you are like “Hey take my money” and they say, “No first we want a copy of your soul…” are you hearing yourself?
Then I discovered BancABC which definitely has its foot on the innovation gas pedal and has won the CCAZ 2020 Award For Most Improved Organization and runner up for Most Innovative
First of all you can open a local bank account easy as ABC; download the bank mobile app, BancABC A360 register and *boom* you have an account. You can also use the USSD menu and dial *242# to access mobile banking services.
The Mobile App has been zero-rated for Econet Mobile users which means you dont need mobile data to use it
Well of course my experience wasn’t that simple, the mobile app decided to do buggy things and failed to complete my registration. I messaged the A-Team via Twitter to enquire about a way forward. I was surprised that within moments had gotten a response and after a bit of back and forth my issue was resolved.
Getting an Instabanc account or a prepaid VISA card is a quick process you don’t even have to go to the bank just walk into participating franchise such as in Pick n Pay Supermarket, find the BancABC booth make an initial deposit and *boom* You can bank and shop
Again I had a couple of challenges getting my VISA card set up but they still got ironed out very quickly when I contacted the A-Team. I was pleasantly surprised when I walked into the BancABC booth to make a deposit again and the guys remembered me and enquired if everything was now working… I promised to give a shout when I wrote about my experience so Shout Out to Webster and Rutendo and the rest of the A-Team
The prepaid VISA card is great for making online payments but the account has some limitations and as I needed a bit more functionality for my banking experience and enquired how I could open a proper FCA account. The A-Team emailed the necessary paperwork and I was able to open an account without ever setting foot into the bank, how about that?
I now officially bank with Branch X, a virtual division of BancABC.
Branch X is Virtual Banking service that came about as a response to COVID-19 challenges allowing one to conduct all sorts of transactions through video and telephone banking a bold combination of people and technology, not just another automated service.
Branch X also offers Dial-A-VISA where you can order a BancABC Prepaid VISA Card and they will deliver to your doorstep… That’s some innovative banking strategy right there especially with the new normal where one wants to limit unnecessary movement.
I haven’t been to the bank in 2 years but I have been banking…
PS The next thing I want is borderless banking, check out my last article on Being A Digital Nomad: Unease Of Business