According to the World Bank, 60% of adults in the developing world (totalling around 3.5 billion people) do not have a formal bank account. These are the ‘unbanked’ – an unpleasant term that evokes the ‘unwell’ and ‘undead’, as if being bankless were a threat to human life. Perhaps it is. A significant proportion of the unbanked shuffle about on less than $2.00 a day. These earnings hardly justify a trip to the nearest bank branch, which may be a day or more’s journey away. The unbanked certainly can’t afford to pay bank fees. They have families to feed and debts to pay. The money disappears soon enough. When we factor in the constant state of crisis that these people endure, we can see why selecting between banks is a first world problem.
For the unbanked, survival is the problem. Gifting is the solution, more often than not.