Welcome back from the long 4 day break. 

My break was great except for one small issue, I had to commission a job with a part down payment which is over the CashLite cash limit. This didn’t initially feel like a problem at first as I felt I could easily log on to Internet Banking and transfer to the beneficiary.

First CashLite Road Block: Beneficiary Bank Unavailable! I got this error on the first day but didn’t sweat it, but when it persisted on days 2-5 which is today you can imagine how upset I got. Instead of venting on twitter against the erring bank which dared be down for 5DAYS!, I decided to think outside the box.

I decided to transfer to another bank, my spending account of sorts, so I could pull out cash from the ATM and pay cash into the Beneficiary bank directly.

Second CashLite RoadBlock: I cannot pull out more than N200k from the ATM per day! Meaning I couldn’t even pull out the entire sum if I wanted. 

Third CashLite RoadBlock: Even if I pulled out N200k, I wouldn’t be able to pay into the beneficiary account because the limit was N150k on cash transactions for withdrawals and deposits. Question is, if I am paying cash into an account not withdrawing, does it makes sense to have this restriction?

Fully and thoroughly irritated at this point a midst multiple calls to the recipient and credit wasted explaining that she was going to get paid today unfailingly, I angrily go to the ATM to withdraw cash and the ATM is out of service! At this point you can imagine the string of expletives which  escaped my lips. This brings me to my next question, when a bank branch has an out of service ATM why should I be billed over the counter charges for transactions above N50k or N60k depending on the bank?

I storm to the next bank’s ATM to pay N100 per N20k transaction 8 times!!!!! That’s N800 (money for Shawarma, credit, cab fare or even lunch) for NOTHING!!!!!!!!

I trek  emphasis on trek in today’s hot sun to the recipient bank to pay in cash over the counter and guess what, it is not posted immediately but even worse, I have to do this again tomorrow to complete the payment.

After my anger subsided, I decided to stop “vexing” and start thinking. 

The cashLite initiative is not bad, but there is a lot of work to be done to make it work. Some of the few questions on my mind are:

  • How do we first off create flexible policies based on real life situations not roadblocks?
  • How do we help banks build redundancies around their channels so customers have options?