Third world and nearly third world countries’ banking system

Today, to be more specific in last 24 hours, I just got another proof that I don’t want to be part of developing countries. I need to live and be connected to only already developed, the first world country. Being from nearly third world country, even Kazakhstan is far more developed than any countries from the 3rd world countries list, living in Cambodia I don’t really see any difference. I am not going to talk about corruption, mentality, and another similar sh*t, but a simple banking system.

Pre-story. Martin’s UK card expired. We received a new one (after going through hell) but a card is in the UK. We have all details for online transactions but don’t have access to the online banking yet (we are going through another hell to fix it).

I already had a lot of complication with Kazakh banks in the past, but what is happening now is not comparable at all. It is the next level of craziness! As a brief explanation why Kazakhstan bank system is a complete joke, I will give you examples. We all know HSBC bank, 3 years ago, before I went in the UK, I opened an account in HSBC Kazakhstan, it made sense for me at that point. Can you imagine how I was surprised that card didn’t work overseas, I had an account in pounds specially opened for the UK, that I will not need to pay extra conversion rate, and it just didn’t work. I had to use my New Zealand card for a while. A few days after my arrival we went to the HSBC and found out that HSBC Kazakhstan doesn’t exist in their system and I have to contact my bank directly. That problem sort of been sorted, but with a loss of quite a big amount of money.  Another problem cost some money as well. I tried a few times sent money from Kazakhstan to the UK, my bank (not HSBC, but official, main Kazakh bank) made me open two more accounts. I had/have a debit card by this bank that apparently doesn’t have a proper account, so firstly they asked me to open an account, not connected to the card, in KZT (Kazakhstan’s currency), and then one more account in GBP, to make a transfer into UK account. After all of these, when a transfer has been done, UK bank refused to accept money because my bank looks suspicious. The main bank of the country that not considered as the third world country looks f@king suspicious. Guess what? It was an extra spending on WU commission. My recent problem with this bank is online payment. Which get us closer to the actual problem – PayPal. At the moment I cannot buy anything online if it doesn’t have PayPal option because my absolutely amazing bank decided to change a system of 3d secure code, that can be confirmed ONLY by phone, and I am living abroad, my phone number has been disconnected long time ago!

Now let’s talk about pay pal. Bloody f@king PayPal and 3rd world countries’ banks! As I said before I use PayPal to buy things, I obviously expected that I can receive money as well, but I don’t. I tried everything during the night. What did I learn:

  • If I register my Kazakh card to the Cambodian address, I can buy only and not able to receive any payments at all.
  • If I register Kazakh card to the UK address, I can do everything but withdraw money because money can’t be transferred to the card, it has to be transferred to the bank account, UK bank account.
  • If I register Kazakh card to the address in Kazakhstan, I can send/receive money, BUT, attention-attention, to withdraw money I need to have US bank account. For what the f@king reason I need US bank account if I am in Kazakhstan?

It was problems of NEARLY shit country. Can you imagine what possible problems you can have with Cambodians banks? I will tell you. I have an account in Cambodian bank, rarely use it, but at this moment we need an account for Martin’s name, and his name only. And here we go, no sense system show itself. To open usual, the basic account in Cambodian bank, as a foreigner, you must proof your income, show employment contract, rent contract (as a proof of address), passport and visa (this makes sense). For what sake do you need an employment contract to open a usual account that can’t be overdrawn?

All we need is somehow transfer money from UK account to the Cambodia. After trying all these useless options, all we have left is western union or money gram. And guess what? This is just can’t be done online, this transaction just blocks by everyone, on each single step. You can choose “send money in Cambodia” online, but when you get your final step, it will be decline. Firstly UK bank stopping it, we called the bank, they approved; try again, western union block transaction, we called them – they approved; we try again, and now actual Visa company block it! All of this happening just because we try to send money to the Cambodia, country that looks suspicious for everyone.

My personal favourite bank system was in New Zealand, I wish all countries has it in the same way. It is secure, but not so complicated as in the UK, you automatically has “saving account” connected to your main one, and you get some interest every month. It is just so easy, you can do everything online, or from your phone. I didn’t have any complications with banks in New Zealand, ever.



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