The Advantages and Disadvantages of Using GCash

Tech | August 22, 2019



GCash is a mobile application that provides digital payment and remittance services to its users. Its services and products are very innovative in a way that it allows us to do banking transactions or payment transactions in just a few click.

In using GCash, you can transfer money from one account to the other without going physically to the bank to withdraw or deposit the money to your account. Everything happens in an instant. For instance, I can transfer money easily from my GCash account to my mother's bank account at now extra cost as of this writing. That is just one of the many advantages of GCash.

But before we discuss the advantages of using GCash, the very first thing you need to do is to download and install the app via Google Play (for Android) or App Store (for iOS). Once you have the app you need to register and verify your account. It is important that you verify your account so you can unlock all the features and enjoy the full benefits of using the app.



If your account is not verified, the transactions that you can do will be limited, so it is really advisable to verify your account. So, I strongly suggest that you verify your account as this will also help you in the future in case you are making claims due to fraud or any situation that requires legal support or evidence. Once you are done with the verification process, you should be able to use the full potential of the app ranging from transferring money to any bank account, sending or receiving money, paying bills among others.

More on the advantages of using GCash

Almost all of the leading banking institutions in the Philippines are listed in GCash. So, this means that transferring money to different bank accounts will instantly becomes very convenient. There is no need to go to the bank and engage yourself in waiting for long queues. In using GCash, all you need is a phone, an internet connection and the correct details for your transaction.

What if the person you want to send money with has no bank account? No problem, you can send the money via GCash to GCash feature. This feature will allow you to send money to your friend or business partners directly to their GCash account. This can be done in just three to five steps in your GCash app.

Bank to bank money transfer or GCash to GCash transfer is indeed very convenient. The transaction can be done anytime except of course when their system is down or under maintenance. We'll talk about this one later in the disadvantages section. For now let us focus ourselves on the fact that this can be done with zero convenience fee. I am not sure how long will this be free but right now I am taking advantage of it while it is still free.

Another most important feature of the GCash app is bills payment. GCash listed many merchants around the country to support this feature. Right now, I am using GCash to pay for my electric and water bills, I also use this in paying my car loan and internet bills. Bills payment is not free though, there is a convenience fee for this transaction ranging from 10-15 pesos. Not bad, right?

Aside from that, you can also buy load for your prepaid sim, gaming pins, prepaid and postaid cable TVs, internet and a lot more. The app also offers GSave where you can create a savings deposit at the start of 50 pesos. On top of that, GCash also allows you to loan money from them through a feature called GCredit. But the loanable amount is small from the start because this will depend to your Credit Score. Your credit score is a measure of how an avid user you are of the app.



The more you use the app the more your credit score will increase. And when you reach a certain credit score, your GCredit will be activated and you can then start loaning from them starting from Php1,000. I have not tried using this one though. So, if you have already tried maybe you could leave some comments below and let us know your experience in using this feature.

I still have a lot of things to discuss about the advantages of GCash but I think should left some of these for you to discover because we need to discuss as well about the disadvantages of using this app. Until now, I am still useing this app and I really consider this as one of the very useful application in my smartphone right now.

The risk in using GCash

Like every financial institutions, you need to fund your GCash account with actual money. Thereare quite a few ways to do this. One of the easiest and the most convenient way to fund your GCash account is by linking your bank account to your GCash account.

Once your bank account is linked to your GCash account funding your GCash is easy. But if you are hesitant to do it, you can actually fund GCash from your bank's mobile app. So, everything is still being done digitally. Very convenient! This transaction is secured by using OTP and your GCash MPIN.

Another way to fund your GCash is via over-the-counter in 7/11 store or kiosk. Another is to fund via remittance services like RD pawnshop. But I am not using these two because I find it less convenient.

I can sense that you are asking, is it really safe to link my bank account to GCash? Well, GCash appplies the authentication process of the bank when you link your bank account to GCash. And as I mentioned earlier, GCash will require an OTP (One Time Password send to your mobile number) when you are going to fund your GCash account from your bank account.

Also, this will be done in the GCash app which you cannot log-in if you do not have the MPIN. It is therefore important, that you DO NOT SHARE your OTP and your MPIN to anyone else. Both are important but the MPIN is extremely important.

What if I lost my phone and I use the same number with my GCash and bank account. Again, everytime you open the GCash app it requires you to log-in or enter your GCash MPIN. So, as long as you did not save your GCash MPIN on the same phone you should be safe. No risk, but what if you lost your phone while the GCash is opened?

I think, your account is in a serious risk when that scenario will happen. Though the app has a session timeout due to inactivity--meaning the app will automatically close when it is on standby for a certain duration without any activity, there is still a risk if someone finds your phone and the GCash app is still active when he finds it.



When that person has knowledge, he could do the transaction on your behalf. With GCash open and the same number registered to receive the OTP is insered to that same phone, then transaction could be done successfully.

Therefore, it is a good habit to always close the GCash app once you are done with your transaction! Never rely on the session timeout to take effect. It is better to be safe than sorry, right?!

The disadvantages of using GCash

GCash customer service is really very slow to respond. One incident I experienced is when I transferred money from BPI to GCash then GCash to EastWest.

The first transaction was successful, I cash-in around Php6,000. The next one has failed, that is from GCash to EastWest. My GCash has been deducted with Php6,000 but the money was not credited to my EastWest account. This really made me worry a lot!

I contacted the GCash customer service and their response was really very slow. I got worried and felt very helpless. But, all ended well, the money was eventually credited to my EastWest account. But the experience was really very bad.

So, this sort of things could also happen to you. I think GCash is growing and more and more people are using the app and this might be the reason why things like this happen. But when this happens to you, don't expect a faster customer service from them.

For now, most of the services of GCash are free but I think eventually in the future, charges will soon be applied. Some bills payment actually are already charging Php15 convenience fee. For me, this is fine because when you go to 7/11 or other "bayad center", they also charge for a convenience fee, some even charges higher than Php15. Bank transfer is still free though.

Another disadvantages of GCash is that sometimes there server is down. When this happen you cannot do anything other than wait. Their customer service is slow and most of the times they do not give advance notification. So, to be safe I only cash-in when the system is working and then immediately transfer the money or do my transaction as quickly as I could.



Recommendations

Over-all, GCash is a useful application because of the convenience it provides in doing financial transactions right at your fingertips. So, I will be recommmending this app for your financial transactions with a little caution.

Again, if you will ever try to use GCash, always remember to never share your MPIN and OTP to anyone else. Do not cash-in big amount of money to the app when you are not going to use the money immediately. This is because when their system is down and you will need to wait for them to fix their system before you can access and use your money. Plus, their customer service is not that good as well.

I also forgot to mention that GCash has a sort of atm card which you can get for Php150. You can use this card to easily withdraw your money via atm machines. Though this is good, I do not recommend it to be an alternative to your savings account.

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