Banking On Samal Island{5}

BPI Express Teller

My time on the Samal Island has been limited. There is so much more I’d like (and need) to know about it, and I really want to spend more time there exploring. Not only the sights but the towns, to see what is and is not available.

Something I had not considered were banks. I hadn’t really thought about it, but just assumed there are banks and ATM machines available there. Samal sees a lot of tourist traffic through their resorts, and you’d think that there would be a need for these tourists to acquire cash while visiting.

I happened across a feasibility study for a potential financial center on Samal Island. If I’m reading the study correctly, it pretty clearly states the need for banks and ATMs.

However, the tourist, when run out of cash get a hard time securing. The result they go home in no time and hardly come back because of the bad experience. Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) will ease that part of the problem. Having an ATM service in the area will promote influx of the local and foreign tourist and will serve the over 4,000 government employee to withdraw their salary and GSIS benefits without the endangerment of the courier withdrawal practice.

“Courier Withdrawal ” as I call it, defeats the purpose of personalized and safe transport of money via ATM.. Courier Withdrawal, means sending one person to withdraw the cash through its and everyone’s ATM card. Therefore the owner of the card will reveal his/her Personal Identification Number (PIN) so that the courier can make withdrawal. Isn’t that a risk. Whereas, if having an ATM facilities here at IGaCoS, particularly in the designated business district area, everybody would learn how to withdraw his/her own money, using the ATM.

The reason why commercial banks is badly needed. the reason to launch this project to house the necessary services in preparation and continuous servitude for the growing economy.

Most often than not, business in IGaCoS is limited by the business owners themselves because of the danger of storing or stocking huge amount of cash on hand and in the transporting physically. With the aide of the checking accounts, automatic transfer accounts or combination accounts, business owners and managers need not transport cash physically, thereby eliminating the danger of hijack, hold-up or other form of robbery.

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The larger resorts, such as Pearl Farm, must have something in place for the tourist to be able to access cash. At least I would hope so. Maybe they don’t feel a need to, because other than staying at the resort there probably isn’t a real need to use cash. The lack of banks will undoubtably have to change as the resort subdivisions continue to develop. This looks like a good opportunity and the study does a good job of outlining the potential, though the numbers were a little too involved for my interest.

Another note that I took from this study was the mention of a lower cost ferry. The Samal-Davao Bridge is mentioned a couple of times, and even though I had heard of a possible second ferry system, I had not heard that they planned it to be lower cost.

Even if the Davao City-IgaCoS bridge will not be realized yet, the plan of the Provincial government of Davao del Norte, the mother province of IGaCoS , to install a ferry boat plying Davao City to IGaCoS and vice versa at a fare half of the existing, is one of the best move to contribute to the enhancement of the potentiality of the Island Garden City of Samal.. This competing ferry company, will boast the local and foreign tourist due to low ferry rate. Estimated increase up to ten (10) the first wave of the ompetitive ferry fare.

There’s a lot of good info in the study, so if you are interested in that kind of stuff, check it out (article since removed).

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photo credit: Swiss Chalet