With the start of Ramadan on 23 April, Muslims all over the world will be observing their holy month; a period of prayer, fasting and self-reflection. This year, so heavily disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic, will be like no other in living memory, affecting everything from the way Ramadan is celebrated to more practical matters including sending money back to friends and family in countries such as Bangladesh.
Ramadan will be different this year
Of course, the key aspects of Ramadan will remain and millions of people will fast from dawn to dusk, but the impact of Covid-19 and social distancing will have a huge knock-on effect.
Just as lockdown is impacting public meetings here in the UK, in Bangladesh gatherings have been banned and the government has made the decision not to allow more than 12 people in mosques for Ramadan evening prayers.
There are some great online resources helping people to #RAMADANATHOME, with suggestions including:
- Stream pre-recorded or live taraweeh to your home
- Pray together as a congregation within your household
- Organise virtual iftars with friends and extended family
Be careful of money transfer fraud
As well as being a time of year when our customers would send money home, it’s also a period of generosity and giving, helping charities that offer support, food and clothing to those who are less fortunate.
Sadly, difficult times such as those caused by Covid-19 are exploited by scammers. In addition to a general increase in phishing and other common scams, there are particular money transfer frauds to be aware of. The key points to remember are:
- Any money transfer to Bangladesh should only be to someone you know
- Unsolicited opportunities, whether via email, text, phone or in person should be treated with extreme caution
- Legitimate institutions, whether charities or financial, will be registered with governing bodies such as the FCA
By being vigilant and aware of potential scams you can be confident that you won’t fall victim to fraud and can send money to Bangladesh without worry.
Why digital transfer
If you are looking to transfer money to Bangladesh during Ramadan, you might be worried about the effect of Covid-19 on your ability to do so. Thankfully, even if you’re not able to leave the house or visit your usual branch or agent, you are still able to send funds digitally via Small World. The benefits of doing this are:
- It’s easy to set up – all you need to do is register on our webpage or app
- It’s cost-effective – we can offer better rates and lower fees than the banks
- It allows you to send money internationally safely and securely
How to send money digitally
It is quick and easy to set up an online account with us. Register via the Small World website, choose Bangladesh as the country you want to send to, enter the amount, enter your beneficiary details, choose your payment method (card or transfer), then confirm and pay. The recipient will receive their money within minutes.
Alternatively, you can use the Small World app, available from the Apple Store and on Google Play. Once this has been downloaded you will be able to:
- Transfer money in 3 simple steps
- See the status of your transfers
- Access all the latest promotions
- Customer support in your local language
And if you’re repeating a transfer that you’ve made previously you can use the app’s One Swipe Send function.
There are other options offered by Small World. These include using a mobile wallet, top-up a prepaid cash card or make a simple phone call to our call centre, where one of our operators will make your transfer for you. You can find all the details on our website.
We appreciate that this Ramadan will be a strange time for everyone and that you will want to minimise this impact by ensuring your money gets back to Bangladesh as usual. The options discussed above will enable you to do so and we hope they will also make things easier for you in future, enabling our customers to send money at the click of a button or swipe of a finger. In the meantime, we want to wish Ramadan Mubarak to you all.