Will NSFAS Wallets Be Switched To Bank Accounts?

NSFAS has previously urged students to open bank accounts so that they can receive allowances directly to their bank account. This then begs the question, will NSFAS be making the switch from NSFAS wallet to a bank account?


NSFAS has previously said that they hope to switch all students who use NSFAS Wallet to receive their allowances to instead receive it through a bank account. There has however been no official confirmation on whether this change will take place.

At present, NSFAS, through its NSFAS Wallet, is already paying allowances directly to students from 33 of the 50 TVET colleges. 

NSFAS Wallet is powered through Celbux, who's aim it is to make managing your finances more accessible. Celbux COO, Charl Moller, spoke to Careers Portal on the possible shift from NSFAS Wallet to bank accounts, saying:

That's a conversation that runs all the time in the background. I think, purely at this stage, it's an economics thing. NSFAS will have to pay for every transfer they do to a student's account. Every student will pay bank fees, card fees and transaction fees.

With NSFAS Wallet, everything is free.

Moller continued to say that students have said that they'll use any system as long as they don't have to pay any fees for it and that this is probably the reason why NSFAS has used Celbux to disburse allowances to students for so long.

A suggestion put forward by the Celbux COO is that perhaps students can have the option of choosing whether they want to receive their allowances through a bank account or through the NSFAS Wallet. 

If I think about how it will play out, a lot of students will say 'give me a bank account' and then they'll realise that it will cost them R20, R30 per month, and then go 'nevermind, give me back my wallet'.

He went on to explain that bank charges and transaction charges all add up.

With NSFAS Wallet, students use cash vouchers. This means that they can create a Celbux voucher through their NSFAS Wallet and can then withdraw the cash using that voucher by going to any of the merchants Celbux and NSFAS has partnered with.

Careers Portal has reached out to NSFAS and awaits a response. 

This is a developing story.

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