Recently Safaricom started notifying MPESA users of transaction costs charged for all cash transfers or bill payments made via SMS after the completion of those transactions. Well this 'Transaction Cost Rip Off' became an eye opener for me when a friend urgently needed to borrow Ksh1,500/- from me.
Since i only had some loose cash in my MPESA wallet i decided to loan the guy the cash. While i was busy going through the steps of transferring the cash,i heard that infamous phrase, "Na utume pia ya kutoa" coming from him as he peeped through my phone to make sure i had put Ksh1,527 as the amount to send. Ksh27 here is the 'Pesa ya kutoa'
Now here comes the shocker, the transaction cost for sending Ksh1,527 is Ksh40, had i sent Ksh1,500 directly without 'Pesa ya kutoa' the transaction cost would've been Ksh25. Now this is where the light bulb moment came in albeit too late. Remember Safaricom also recently scrapped transaction fees for transacted amounts less than Ksh100 so what i would've done here is initially send Kshs1,500 then later send Ksh27 'Pesa ya kutoa' which has no transaction cost. My overall transaction cost would've been Ksh25 instead of Kshs40
So the Trick here is always send the exact amount of cash to get charged the least amount of transaction cost, then later send the 'Pesa ya Kutoa' free. (Only works where the transaction cost is below Ksh100)