M-PESA Charges: What Are Safaricom’s Rates and Tariffs in 2020?

MPESA charges

In this guide, you will discover a detailed list of the M-PESA charges you will have to pay in 2020.

What is M-PESA?

M-PESA is a mobile money transfer service available in Kenya, Tanzania, DRC, Ghana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Egypt, and India. Also, the service has expanded to Afghanistan, South Africa, Romania, and Albania.

Safaricom rolled out M-PESA in 2007. Since then, the service has changed the lives of millions of Africans by increasing the ease of sending and receiving money and paying for goods and services. Moreover, M-PESA has partnered with banks like the Kenya Commercial Bank enabling users to save and borrow money.

M-PESA has more than 30 million active users in Kenya and 31.4 million users outside Kenya as of 2019.

How to Use M-PESA

To register for M-PESA, you need a Safaricom SIM card and a valid registration document like a national ID, a passport, a foreigner certificate, or a military ID. Next, visit an M-PESA agent to access free registration services.

You can access M-PESA through the Safaricom menu located on the SIM toolkit of your phone or through the Safaricom app. Here are some of the things you can do with M-PESA:

  • To send money, go to the “Send Money” option and enter the recipient’s phone number, the amount you wish to send, and your M-PESA PIN.
  • To withdraw cash, visit your local M-PESA agent. Tap “Withdraw Cash” on your phone and then type the agent’s number, the amount you want to withdraw, and your PIN.
  • To pay for bills like electricity, go to “Lipa Na M-PESA” then select “Pay Bill.” Enter the pay bill number of your service provider, your account number, the amount you want to pay, and your PIN.
  • When you want to pay for goods at a supermarket or restaurant, go to “Lipa Na M-PESA” and select “Buy Goods and Services.” Type in the merchant’s till number, the amount you want to spend, and your PIN. Note that paying for goods and services via a till number is free. However, Safaricom charges merchants a one per cent fee of the value of the transaction.

For all M-PESA transactions, users will receive a confirmation pop-up message where they can cancel the transaction if they have entered the wrong details. Additionally, you will receive a receipt message via SMS for every transaction you make via M-PESA. This message will detail the amount you have sent, spent, or received, your current balance, and the transaction charges.

Moreover, you can also use M-PESA to buy airtime for your phone or for somebody else and you can deposit money to your M-PESA account by visiting an M-PESA agent. You can also save and borrow money through KCB M-PESA or M-Shwari, and send money globally using M-PESA Global.

M-PESA Charges

M-PESA Charges
Raidarmax / CC BY-SA

Below, you can find a breakdown of M-PESA charges in 2020

Min (Kshs.)Max (Kshs.)Withdrawal from M-PESA agentTransfer to unregistered usersTransfer to other M-PESA usersTransfer to other mobile money users
149N/AN/AFreeN/A
5010010N/AFreeN/A
1015002745Free11
5011,0002849Free15
1,0011,50028592626
1.5012,50028744141
2,5013,500501125656
3,5015,000671356161
5,0017,500841667777
7,50110,0001122058787
10,00115,0001622659797
15,00120,000180288102102
20,00135,000191309105105
35,00150,000270N/A105105
50,001150,000300N/A105105

Before the COVID-19 pandemic hit Kenya in March 2020, the maximum amount per transaction was Kenya shillings 70,000 and the maximum amount of money you could transfer to other M-PESA users for free was Kshs 100. Also, the maximum account balance was Ksh 100,000 before the pandemic but Safaricom has increased it to Ksh 300,000.  

ATM Withdrawal Charges

Min (Kshs.)Max (Kshs.)M-PESA charges
2002,50034
2.5015,00067
5,00110,000112
10,00120,000197

Whether you are using M-PESA for the first time or are a regular M-PESA user, it’s always advisable to keep an eye on transaction fees.

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