Cash Agad: Bridging the country’s financial divide

As many Filipinos remain underbanked and the Philippines continues to lag behind its ASEAN neighbors in terms of automated teller machine (ATM) rollout, there are financial institutions that find ways to bridge this financial gap through innovative means.


One of them is BDO Unibank, which has utilized its Cash Agad service to not only reach out to the unbanked and underbanked, but has also used it to provide an additional source of income to micro and small and medium enterprises offering the service as the bank’s partner agents.


Get to know Cash Agad, the services it offers, and how it brings benefits to the stakeholders—partner-agents, consumers, and the various communities.


What is Cash Agad?


Cash Agad is a service wherein any local ATM cardholder (debit or prepaid) can withdraw cash using Cash Agad point-of-sale (POS) terminal deployed in different partner-agents like owners of sari-sari stores, water refilling stations, hardware stores, etc.


These establishments are located in different areas all over the Philippine archipelago where there are no or few banks or ATMs present. In essence, Cash Agad helps provide banking presence where there is none.


What are the services offered by Cash Agad?


At present, cardholders can do balance inquiry and withdraw cash using the POS terminal although additional services are in the offing.


How can cardholders use Cash Agad?


Cardholders just have to do the following:

1.    Go to the nearest Cash Agad partner-agent.
2.    Relay to the store owner the desired transaction.

  • If for balance inquiry, the cardholder will be instructed to insert the card in the POS terminal, select balance inquiry, and enter the card PIN. The account balance will then be displayed on the POS terminal.
  • If for withdrawal, the cardholder will again be the one to insert the card in the POS terminal, input the desired amount, and enter the card PIN. Afterwards, store owner will give the withdrawn amount along with the receipt to the cardholder.

How much can be withdrawn from Cash Agad?


The maximum amount that can be withdrawn per transaction is up to PHP10,000, and the maximum amount per day depends on the issuing bank.


Is there a fee charged per transaction?


Depending on the location of the Cash Agad partner-agent, a convenience fee ranging from as low as PHP15 is charged per withdrawal and will be deducted from the cardholder's ATM account. Balance inquiry is free of charge.


What are the benefits of Cash Agad to the consumers?


For consumers who live in far-flung areas, Cash Agad provides them access to cash without needing to travel far, bear transportation costs, and possibly run the risk of being exposed to the COVID-19 virus just to go to the nearest bank or ATM.


In addition, since the Cash Agad partner-agent is usually a store owner known in the community where there are many “suki” (regular customer), end-users can usually go to that establishment to withdraw money even at off peak hours especially during emergencies.


Although the workability of the POS terminal is dependent on the strength of the cellular signal in the area, Cash Agad is not subject to offline that periodically affect ATMs.


On the part of the store owner, what are the benefits of being a Cash Agad partner-agent?


Cash Agad provides the partner-agent an additional source of income from the convenience fee charged to the customer—which is then automatically deposited to the partner-agent’s BDO account. Aside from that, whenever a customer uses the Cash Agad POS terminal, there is a high chance that the same customer will purchase goods from that establishment (e.g. sari-sari store, water refilling station, hardware store, pharmacy, etc.).


In addition, businesses are not charged with any franchise fee to be a Cash Agad partner-agent.


On the part of the community where the partner-agent/s is/are located, what benefits does Cash Agad bring?


Because people do not need to travel far to another place just to withdraw cash, and the small businesses in that community earn extra income from the offering of Cash Agad, the continuous economic activity within that community is assured. And since the country is still in a pandemic, health risks from long travels can be mitigated.


For those interested in becoming a Cash Agad partner-agent, they just need to inquire via the following channels:



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