Banks adjust SMS banking fees, encourage switch to apps for notifications

Some banks have announced adjustments to SMS banking fees starting from the beginning of 2024 and encouraged customers to switch to digital banking apps to get notifications for free.

Starting from 2024, some banks have announced changes to SMS banking fees and encouraged customers to switch to digital banking apps to get notifications for free. (Photo: VNA)

Starting from 2024, the Bank for Foreign Trade of Vietnam (Vietcombank) is charging VND10,000 per phone number for less than 20 messages per month instead of a fixed monthly fee of VND10,000. Vietcombank will charge VND700 per SMS (excluding VAT) from the 21st message.

Vietcombank will stop sending SMEs to notify balances after transactions of below VND50,000 each.

In a notification to customers, Vietcombank said customers could cancel SME banking services and download VCB Digibank to receive notifications for free.

Asia Commercial Joint Stock Bank (ACB) is charging VND15,000 per month for the first 20 SMEs and VND700 for each SME from the 21st one.

ACB also encourages customers to get notifications via its digital banking app ACB ONE.

A representative from ACB said that the bank would invest in upgrading its app for better user experience in the digital space.

The Cooperative Bank of Vietnam (Co-opBank) increases SME Banking fees to VND16,500 per month (including VAT) and stops sending SMEs for transactions below VND20,000.

Previously, many banks adjusted their ways of charging SMS banking and stopped sending SMS for transactions of modest sums, such as Sacombank, VPBank and VietinBank.

From September 2023, VietinBank charges VND11,000 for 14 SMSs in a month. If the number of SMSs in a month is 15 or higher, VietinBank charges VND880 for each SMS.

Many banks said that they did not earn profits from SMS banking services because of high charges from telecommunications service providers.

An estimate by the Vietnam Banking Association shows that the banking system is paying hundreds of billions of dong per month in telecommunications service fees.

Nguyen Quoc Hung, General Secretary of the Vietnam Banking Association, said previously, banks generally used SMS banking to send notifications to customers.

The charge for each banking service SMS was three times higher than normal SMS and banks did not earn anything from this service, even suffered losses, he said, adding that banks urged telecommunications service providers to reduce this fee.

Now, banks were promoting digitalization and encouraging customers to install digital banking apps to get notifications for free, Hung said.

However, many customers have not yet gotten used to using digital banking apps.

Nguyen Huu Son, 56, said that he did not know how to use smartphones and still got notifications via SMS banking. Increasing SMS banking fees would cost him a significant sum a month, he said.

Other news