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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,

Background

New here and I hope this is the right forum for this question. 45M here from the UK, my GF is from Iloilo (39) although not in the city but about 40 mins away in a rural area. We've been going 5 years and I've had many an enjoyable trip there and to Singapore with her etc. Of course all visiting plans have gone down the drain with this dratted virus.

Money

I'll get right to it - I want help her out with some money when I can for her food. I've used World Remit a couple of times which is very fast , excellent UK based customer service and no issues at all. But the fees are high.

Would getting her one of those cash cards be a better idea? I can just top it up? Can those be used at ATMs? Or should I head down the route of getting her to open a bank account? Is it very expensive to transfer money into those? If a bank is the best could you recommend a couple?

I'm frankly not a fan of her tootling along to those cash collection places and then waddling about with a fat stack of notes. Although I appreciate that in the Philippines cash rules the roost.

Since this is purely for food the other option is to just order it online and have it delivered to her, is this feasible? Are there decent delivery services there?

Would greatly appreciate some guidance, apologies to the mods if this isn't the right forum for all this.

Thanks and stay safe during these times.
 

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Katana

I have used both Zoom and World Remit. How do you think their fees are high? I find them to be very fair with the fees for sending money so quickly.

Art
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Katana

I have used both Zoom and World Remit. How do you think their fees are high? I find them to be very fair with the fees for sending money so quickly.

Art
Thanks, you are right, its very hassle free and easy and for that we must pay the fair fee. I dont know why I thought it was high , it just seemed that way to me I guess. I need to research into cash cards and such.

we use remitly for sending to the family, US 4.99 to send, pretty much in line with the rest of them
Thanks, yes it does seem to be a standard across the board.
 

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Hi Katana and welcome to the forum, enjoy.
Only my opinion but I would ask her to open a bank account with a debit card if she is handy to a bank.
We have a couple of accounts with BDO, they require a maintaining balance of PHP 2K to keep the account open and fee free.
I send bulk money from Oz to these accounts either from my bank, broker and even W/U depending in the best exchange rate at the time. We then draw only what we need for bills and food for about a fortnight at a time.
As you say it's not a wise idea to hold or carry large amounts of cash here. Good luck and keep posting.

Cheers, Steve.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi bigpearl,
Thanks very much for that, specially the bank name. Wanted to choose a big well known branch. Once this covid19 peters out and the lockdowns end I'll get her to open an account. Thanks for the warm welcome.
 

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Hi bigpearl,
Thanks very much for that, specially the bank name. Wanted to choose a big well known branch. Once this covid19 peters out and the lockdowns end I'll get her to open an account. Thanks for the warm welcome.
There are quite a few big banks in PH. so best to ask your better half what is available in her area for convenience and security. Let's hope the current situation with C19 doesn't last too long.

Cheers, Steve.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
There are quite a few big banks in PH. so best to ask your better half what is available in her area for convenience and security. Let's hope the current situation with C19 doesn't last too long.

Cheers, Steve.
Good point. I should approach this from her point of view, find the closest branch.

Yes heres hoping it doesnt go on for long. Depressing looking at the C19 status map, world is on fire. Hope the Ph can keep on top of it although their health system will take a hammering if theres a surge.

The gf told me about aggressive lockdown procedures there.
 

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Good point. I should approach this from her point of view, find the closest branch.

Yes heres hoping it doesnt go on for long. Depressing looking at the C19 status map, world is on fire. Hope the Ph can keep on top of it although their health system will take a hammering if theres a surge.

The gf told me about aggressive lockdown procedures there.
Depressing looking at the rising infection rates worldwide. Yes the Philippines slammed the gate shut earlier than many countries, wisely so and generally most here are abiding but the infection rate continues at around 10%.

Cheers, Steve.
 

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Philippine Banks

Hi bigpearl,
Thanks very much for that, specially the bank name. Wanted to choose a big well known branch. Once this covid19 peters out and the lockdowns end I'll get her to open an account. Thanks for the warm welcome.
Welcome to the forum KatanaDV20, :) Bigpearl has some good information, I've never sent remittances through a bank but one of our In-laws uses BDO from Canada and sends money to her mother this way, BDO is just about every where and I see several branches in Iloilo.
 

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As others have mentioned, Transferwise are very efficient at sending funds from UK. Once you’ve registered with them and provided the details of the Philippines bank, you can then register your Transferwise account with your UK bank. This means that when you want to transfer funds, all you have to do is the following:

• Sign in to Transferwise and complete the section to ‘send money’. This takes all of about 2 minutes.
• Sign in to your UK bank account, pull up your registered transfers and complete the section to send funds to your Transferwise account. Again, this takes about 2 minutes. Note: there is no charge by your UK bank for this and the transfer is instantaneous. Transferwise will send you an e-mail immediately letting you know that they received the funds.

The length of time for the funds to arrive in the Ph. varies depending on the time of day that you action your transfer. Generally speaking, I find that the funds are received in my Ph. account within a couple of hours. So, from the time you decide to transfer funds from UK to Ph., to actually receiving it in your Ph. account, can take a couple of hours. All done from the comfort of your home.

Once you get familiar with Transferwise’s system, you can monitor the FX markets and try to coordinate your transfers when the £ is high. Transferwise also allow you to prepare a transfer and lock in the rate for anywhere between 24 to 72 hrs. This tool enables you to take the ‘locked in rate’ within the guaranteed period if you see the £ falling. On the other hand, this tool allows you to cancel the draft transfer if the £ rises, and create a new transfer.

Re choice of Ph. banks, BPI is also a large Philippines bank and their fees tend to be less than BDO’s. BPI do not charge anything to receive funds from Transferwise. I don’t know if BDO charge to receive funds from Transferwise but they do charge to receive other international transfers. Purely for your information.

I’ve tried to include an attachment here showing a comparison of what you would receive using Transferwise versus Barclays/ Nationwide or PayPal to send £1,000. Transferwise charge £5.36 to send £1K. But as Gary said, when looking at comparisons, it’s best to look at what you receive in terms of Pesos as opposed to fees. If the attachment doesn’t appear below, you can get the info yourself by googling Transferwise, open the website without signing up and simply insert the details to transfer say £1,000 to the Ph. (Insert Php for Pesos). Scroll down and you’ll get the comparisons. Good luck.

PS: I don't know why it says in the comparison table that Transferwise takes 2 days to action the transfer; as mentioned above, in my experience it only takes a couple of hours.
 

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PS: I don't know why it says in the comparison table that Transferwise takes 2 days to action the transfer; as mentioned above, in my experience it only takes a couple of hours.
It always takes two-three day for the money to reach our PNB account, it wouldn't surprise me if the delay is at the PNB end.
 

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Using attachments on the forum

I’ve noticed others are experiencing difficulties in attaching a document to a post, so here are my findings. I’ve just had another go at attaching a document and I think I’ve sussed out where I went wrong. I've attached the comparison table referred to in post ⋕12.

1. write up the post
2. scroll down to the ‘Additional Option’ section and under ‘Attach Files’ select ‘Manage Attachments’.
3. from the ‘Manage Attachments’ box, select ‘Browse’, which enables you to choose the relevant file from your desktop or wherever.
4. click on the ‘Open’ box if you’re using a MacBook
5. select ‘Upload’ from the ‘Manage Attachment’s box and 'Bob's your uncle'.

I missed out item 5 before, thinking that when I selected the ‘open’ box that was the end of the matter. This may help some of you.
 

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There are lots of PBI, BDO, PNB, ChinaBank, & others spread around Iloilo but he said she was some 40 minutes distance so had better find out what she has local to her and work from there. Right now travel is severely restricted so may not even be able to get to a bank. The local PBI that I use will not let you even Que to go in their lobby unless you are wearing a mask and have a Coronavirus Pass from your Barangay Office.

Fred
 

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I can also recommend TransferWise, best rates, lowest fees and very fast.
There are a couple of services they offer not so far mentioned here.
1 You can create an account with them and keep cash in the account in your nominated currency. This has the advantage that you can transfer funds directly from that balance without having to transfer funds to them. The funds will then be in your Philippine account in minutes. It also has the advantage that you can send funds directly to that account from your UK bank via your debit card, so even easier.
2 You can send funds to individuals that don't have a Philippine bank account. This is done using mobile wallet such as GCash and PayMaya. All you need is the recipients mobile number. Full info on how to do this is given on their website http://transferwise.com.
 

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I deal with HSBC. I have accounts in Canada and in the Philippines.

I can transfer cash between the two countries as easily as I can move it from chequing to savings accounts within a country.

Drawback is HSBC does not have a lot of branches, either in Canada or in the Philippines. Here only in Manila, Cebu and Davao as far as I know and no stand alone ATM's outside of those cities either.
 

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I deal with HSBC. I have accounts in Canada and in the Philippines.

I can transfer cash between the two countries as easily as I can move it from chequing to savings accounts within a country.
I've got Citibank accounts in a couple of different countries, they also offer international transfer to PH as a one click transfer, but you pay excessively for the convenience.

I'd bet that Transferwise would give you better rates though.
 

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All banks, as far as I know, will give you foreign transfer services. The problem is the charges are usually sky high and the exchange rates are bad, especially if you're transferring to a different bank. That's why companies like World Remit, Xoom and TransferWise are proving to be so popular.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Welcome to the forum KatanaDV20, :) Bigpearl has some good information, I've never sent remittances through a bank but one of our In-laws uses BDO from Canada and sends money to her mother this way, BDO is just about every where and I see several branches in Iloilo.
Thanks for the warm welcome. I am glad I joined this forum as all of you have very good knowldege of the Ph which I really need at this time! BDO is looking more and more likely as the gf said shes got one not too far away from her in one of the malls :)


I often us Transferwise to send money to our PNB account, don't look at the fee look at the pesos recieved. I can transfer fee free from my HSBC account but often get more pesos with transferwise.
I will check this company out thank you.

As others have mentioned, Transferwise are very efficient at sending funds from UK. Once you’ve registered with them and provided the details of the Philippines bank, you can then register your Transferwise account with your UK bank. This means that when you want to transfer funds, all you have to do is the following:

• Sign in to Transferwise and complete the section to ‘send money’. This takes all of about 2 minutes.
• Sign in to your UK bank account, pull up your registered transfers and complete the section to send funds to your Transferwise account. Again, this takes about 2 minutes. Note: there is no charge by your UK bank for this and the transfer is instantaneous. Transferwise will send you an e-mail immediately letting you know that they received the funds.

The length of time for the funds to arrive in the Ph. varies depending on the time of day that you action your transfer. Generally speaking, I find that the funds are received in my Ph. account within a couple of hours. So, from the time you decide to transfer funds from UK to Ph., to actually receiving it in your Ph. account, can take a couple of hours. All done from the comfort of your home.

Once you get familiar with Transferwise’s system, you can monitor the FX markets and try to coordinate your transfers when the £ is high. Transferwise also allow you to prepare a transfer and lock in the rate for anywhere between 24 to 72 hrs. This tool enables you to take the ‘locked in rate’ within the guaranteed period if you see the £ falling. On the other hand, this tool allows you to cancel the draft transfer if the £ rises, and create a new transfer.

Re choice of Ph. banks, BPI is also a large Philippines bank and their fees tend to be less than BDO’s. BPI do not charge anything to receive funds from Transferwise. I don’t know if BDO charge to receive funds from Transferwise but they do charge to receive other international transfers. Purely for your information.

I’ve tried to include an attachment here showing a comparison of what you would receive using Transferwise versus Barclays/ Nationwide or PayPal to send £1,000. Transferwise charge £5.36 to send £1K. But as Gary said, when looking at comparisons, it’s best to look at what you receive in terms of Pesos as opposed to fees. If the attachment doesn’t appear below, you can get the info yourself by googling Transferwise, open the website without signing up and simply insert the details to transfer say £1,000 to the Ph. (Insert Php for Pesos). Scroll down and you’ll get the comparisons. Good luck.

PS: I don't know why it says in the comparison table that Transferwise takes 2 days to action the transfer; as mentioned above, in my experience it only takes a couple of hours.
Thanks very much for this detailed reply. Will deffo be checking out TW over the next few days. I like the fact that it monitors the exchange rate and zaps over the money when the £ is high, that is handy for sure. I dont think WR has that feature. Also its good advice to see how many pesos are sent rather than focus on the fees.

I’ve noticed others are experiencing difficulties in attaching a document to a post, so here are my findings. I’ve just had another go at attaching a document and I think I’ve sussed out where I went wrong. I've attached the comparison table referred to in post ⋕12.

1. write up the post
2. scroll down to the ‘Additional Option’ section and under ‘Attach Files’ select ‘Manage Attachments’.
3. from the ‘Manage Attachments’ box, select ‘Browse’, which enables you to choose the relevant file from your desktop or wherever.
4. click on the ‘Open’ box if you’re using a MacBook
5. select ‘Upload’ from the ‘Manage Attachment’s box and 'Bob's your uncle'.

I missed out item 5 before, thinking that when I selected the ‘open’ box that was the end of the matter. This may help some of you.
Thanks very much for doing this :)

There are lots of PBI, BDO, PNB, ChinaBank, & others spread around Iloilo but he said she was some 40 minutes distance so had better find out what she has local to her and work from there. Right now travel is severely restricted so may not even be able to get to a bank. The local PBI that I use will not let you even Que to go in their lobby unless you are wearing a mask and have a Coronavirus Pass from your Barangay Office.

Fred
Thank you, she is about 35 mins journey from a BDO (walk+trike+jeepney) so that bank looks to be the most promising if just for proximity. Yes she did say that their lockdown is pretty hardcore with checkpoints all over the place. We need that kind of enforcement in the UK because we have many idiots here not caring.

I can also recommend TransferWise, best rates, lowest fees and very fast.
There are a couple of services they offer not so far mentioned here.
1 You can create an account with them and keep cash in the account in your nominated currency. This has the advantage that you can transfer funds directly from that balance without having to transfer funds to them. The funds will then be in your Philippine account in minutes. It also has the advantage that you can send funds directly to that account from your UK bank via your debit card, so even easier.
2 You can send funds to individuals that don't have a Philippine bank account. This is done using mobile wallet such as GCash and PayMaya. All you need is the recipients mobile number. Full info on how to do this is given on their website http://transferwise.com.
This mobile wallet sounds very interesting and I looked into it, turns out that World Remit which Ive been using all this time has a Secure Digitial Wallet also which Im guessing is a similar thing. Will check out those other apps too thank you.

I deal with HSBC. I have accounts in Canada and in the Philippines.

I can transfer cash between the two countries as easily as I can move it from chequing to savings accounts within a country.

Drawback is HSBC does not have a lot of branches, either in Canada or in the Philippines. Here only in Manila, Cebu and Davao as far as I know and no stand alone ATM's outside of those cities either.
Yes unfortunately I have not heard of a HSBC in Iloilo area :/

All banks, as far as I know, will give you foreign transfer services. The problem is the charges are usually sky high and the exchange rates are bad, especially if you're transferring to a different bank. That's why companies like World Remit, Xoom and TransferWise are proving to be so popular.
This is exactly true. When I first looked into this it was the banks I looked at first and the rates are horrible. I even saw a counter at the local Tesco store to send money and the fee is £10! Like. What!
 
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