OFW Banking Guide for Filipinos in Malaysia

As an overseas Filipino worker (OFW) in Malaysia, it is important to know the different options for OFW banking in Malaysia so that you can better manage your finances. As a general rule of thumb, OFWs should consider opening a savings account abroad even if they are not working in the country at present.

The Philippines is blessed to have over 10 million overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) contributing to the economy. This number may be small when compared to other countries, but it’s still a large percentage of our population and contributes billions of dollars annually in remittances. As we all know, Malaysia is one of the top 5 destinations for OFWs worldwide with hundreds of thousands coming here every year. These numbers prove that there are many opportunities for Filipinos who want to work abroad like you who are reading this article right now!

Guide to OFW Banking in Malaysia

Banking procedures for OFWs in Malaysia are quite similar to those in the Philippines.

If you are a newbie who needs to transfer money from your home country (Philippines) to your Malaysian bank account, follow this guide.

  • Open up an account with any of the local banks here. Find out which is most convenient for you: Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), Maybank, CIMB Bank, HSBC or Hong Leong Bank.
  • Set up online banking access on their website so that you can make transfers more easily later on. You might also consider setting up mobile banking access as well if it is offered by your chosen bank so that there will be no need to go back home just to perform certain transactions such as paying bills and managing other financial matters remotely.

Most banks offer accounts that OFWs can maintain. 

The most common account for OFWs is savings accounts. The interest rates are usually low but it is accepted in all banks in Malaysia, including foreign exchange transactions or remittances to the Philippines. Another option is a remittance account which allows you to send cash directly to your family back home through Western Union or LBC money transfer service providers.

Maintaining a savings account abroad helps you save in various ways, especially if you are an OFW.

It is important to save money, especially if you are an overseas Filipino worker (OFW). A savings account abroad helps you save in many ways, including:

  • To save for your future.
  • To save for your family’s needs.
  • To save for the education of your children.
  • To prepare for retirement and make sure that you have something to live on after retirement.
  • To plan and build a dream house that will be your retirement home.

OFW Banking Tips in Malaysia

Choose a Bank that has Overseas Branches

If you have left the Philippines to work abroad, and plan to keep your money in the Philippines, OFW banking in Malaysia tips suggest that you should choose a bank that has overseas branches. This way, you can go to the nearest branch at any time, whenever you need cash or a bank account statement. OFW banking tips also advise that you should check if the bank provides remittance service, because this is one of their main services. The rates are usually low and they often provide special discounts for OFW clients. They may also accept payments in foreign currency through their ATMs.

Choose a Bank that has Online Banking Services

OFW banking in Malaysia has become very easy since the advent of online banking. There is no need to queue up and wait for your turn to transact. You just log-in to your bank account through your internet banking facilities and you can do all your transactions. However, there are some important guidelines that must be observed when doing online banking. These guidelines are set by some regulatory bodies like Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) or Securities Commission Malaysia (SC). It is important that you understand these guidelines, so that you will avoid having any problems with these agencies. If you are planning to open a new account in a certain bank, make sure that the bank offers online service for its customers. This is because if the bank does not have online services, then it means that you will still have to go to their branch to transact your business. You will just be wasting time going there and waiting for hours before you can talk to the teller. If there is a problem with your transaction, it will be difficult for you to get assistance from their staff since they do not have the capability of providing any support.

Choose a Bank with Multi-Currency Account

For the OFWs who are working in Malaysia and planning to go back home to the Philippines, it is very important to choose the bank before arriving in Malaysia. In addition, you have to choose a bank with multi-currency accounts to convert your money from Ringgit to Peso easily. Some banks in Malaysia do not allow their customers to have multiple currencies in their accounts, but some banks will allow you. These banks also offer a Multi-Currency Cash Passport where you can load as much cash as you like and use it for ATM withdrawals or cash advances at any ATM around the globe.

Choose a Bank that has Minimal Requirements for Opening an Account

It’s easy to open a bank account in Malaysia when you’re an overseas Filipino worker (OFW). All you need is a valid passport and a prepaid cell phone. Bear in mind that as a migrant worker, you’ll need to be active in using your bank account to keep it active (i.e. make regular transactions such as deposits and withdrawals). Otherwise, it will be forcibly closed by the bank after 6 months of inactivity.

Find a Bank that Offers Free Money Remittance Service

OFWs in Malaysia should take advantage of free money remittance services from banks that offer this service. Money transfer is a simple, quick and convenient way to send money back home to relatives or family members. It is one of the government’s strategies to promote financial inclusion and provide innovative products and services.

In Malaysia, several banks offer free money remittance services for customers with an account. The Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) requires banks to pass on the savings from free money remittance service to customers through various banking services such as low-cost loans and deposit products. This way, Malaysian banks can help customers build savings for the future.

Free money remittance service allows OFWs in Malaysia to send money home freely without restricting the amount they can transfer. They can schedule their transactions in advance via internet or mobile banking. They can also track their transactions in real-time using their smartphones or laptops.

Free money remittance can be done through various channels: over-the-counter (OTC), bank counter, and electronic channels such as ATM or internet/mobile banking. However, there are transaction limits depending on the channel used.

There are many banks in Malaysia and some are better for OFWs than others.

There are a lot of banks in Malaysia, and many of them have different services for people who are not Malaysian citizens. Some are better for OFWs than others. Most international banks, like HSBC or Citibank, will require you to have a local address and an employer number to open an account with them. BDO is a good option for OFWs because they offer a “Bancassurance” plan with health insurance and accident coverage. It’s an optional insurance plan that covers you and your immediate family members up to the age of 65 in a single policy. If you’re working here as a domestic helper, it might be hard to get this kind of coverage otherwise, so it’s great that you can use your salary as part of the premium payment.

Securing your future means making smart financial decisions today.

It may seem like a lot, but securing your future means making smart financial decisions today.

The first step is to save as much as you can each month. You should be saving at least RM1,000 (about $250 USD) per month into your emergency fund so that if something happens and money is needed quickly, it’s there for you without having to borrow from others or risk going into debt. This way, if something goes wrong with your business or life in general, you won’t be stuck with no money available because all funds were spent on expenses related to daily living rather than being put towards savings accounts where they should be going! Be sure that these savings are safe from theft and inflation – make sure they’re invested wisely in things such as bonds and stocks!

Final Thoughts

Among the many banking services available, OFWs should take advantage of the convenience and security of online banking. It is also important that you choose the right bank for your needs and make sure that it has all the services you require. With these tips in mind, we hope you can make smart financial decisions for yourself and your family members today!

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