In Nigeria, banking has taken a big leap into the digital age. Now, we don’t always need to visit a bank branch to open an account or carry out some transactions. We can now do these things from the comfort of our homes.
In most Nigerian banks, however, it is mandatory that you provide your Bank Verification Number (BVN) before you can open a bank account.
What if you do not have a BVN? Does that mean you won’t even be able to receive cash gifts from friends and family, or even make a simple transaction?
Far from it! There are some online banking apps and mobile wallets that can let you open a bank account in Nigeria without a BVN or even an email. Although these accounts will come with some restrictions, it is still better than not having any account at all.
Are you interested in knowing these digital banking apps and wallets? Let’s take a stroll.
Online Banking Apps & Wallets in Nigeria (No BVN)
Opay is arguably the reigning digital bank at the moment. It was founded in 2018 by Norwegian company Opera Software and operates in several countries, including Nigeria, Mexico, Egypt, and Pakistan.
If you do not have a BVN, Opay offers a way to bank without one. You can sign up with just your mobile phone number and start banking right away. How does this work?
Opay has several KYC levels, 4 to be specific but just 3 apply to you on a personal level. They include:
- KYC level 1 – Can hold ₦300,000 maximum account balance and perform ₦50,000 maximum daily transaction.
- KYC level 2 – ₦500,000 maximum account balance, and ₦200,000 maximum daily transaction.
- KYC level 3 – Unlimited maximum account balance, and 5,000,000 maximum daily transactions.
The KYC level 1 is that which you will be eligible to sign up for on Opay without a BVN. So if you are okay with having ₦300,000 as a maximum account balance, then download the Opay app, register for an account, and then verify with your phone number.
You might want to use the invite code 9130372942 to get ₦1200 welcome bonus once you add at least ₦1000 to your account.
A close competitor to Opay, PalmPay is a mobile payment and financial services platform that operates in Nigeria and Tanzania. It was founded in 2019 by the Transsnet Group, a Nigerian technology company.
Just like Opay, Palmpay also lets you open a bank account in Nigeria without BVN. You can use this bank account to send and receive money, pay bills, recharge your line, etc.
A Palmpay account without a BVN linked can hold a maximum balance of ₦300,000 and perform a daily transaction limit of ₦50,000.
To get started, simply head over to the Google Play store on your Android device, or the Apple App store on your iPhone and install the Palmpay app. Once done, register with just your phone number and start banking right away. Use the invite code BWG6QD to get a welcome bonus of ₦1000.
3. Firstmonie Wallet
Firstmonie Wallet is an electronic wallet by First Bank. It allows you to perform basic financial transactions on your mobile phone without a BVN.
The Firstmonie Wallet allows you to transfer money to any bank account in Nigeria and any mobile number, buy airtime, buy data, pay bills, fund your bet9ja account, check your balance, generate statements, and withdraw cash.
With your Firstmonie wallet, you can carry out a daily transaction of up to ₦50,000 and have a maximum balance of ₦300,000.
To get started, simply download the Firstmonie wallet app from either the Google Play Store or iOS app store or dial *894*1# on your mobile phone and follow the steps. You will need to have at least up to ₦14 naira balance on your phone for the USSD registration charge. Click to get more information
4. GTMobile Wallet
GTMobile Wallet is a mobile banking service offered by Guaranty Trust Bank (GTBank) that allows you to perform basic banking transactions without a BVN.
To create a GTMobile Wallet, simply dial *737*0# from your phone and follow the steps. This type of account also comes with an instant Naira MasterCard which you can use to make payments online and offline.
The daily transaction limit for a GTMobile Wallet is N20,000, and the maximum cumulative account balance is N100,000. You can also earn interest on your balance at a rate of 5.55%.
If you want to upgrade your GTMobile Wallet to a full bank account, you can do so by linking your BVN to your wallet. This will allow you to access more features and benefits, such as the ability to make international transfers and open a savings account.
5. Access Monie Wallet
Access Bank Monie Wallet lets you carry out simple transactions from wherever you are just from your mobile phone. To open an Access Monie Wallet, simply dial *901*10# from your mobile number even if you do not have airtime. You also do not need a BVN for this.
With your Access Monie Wallet, you can perform up to ₦20,000 per single transaction. Click to learn more.
As you can see, even without a BVN, you can still open a bank account in Nigeria with the above-listed apps and mobile wallets. While the account may not let you hold huge amounts, it can still hold tangible sums. So what are you waiting for? Get started with owning a bank account without a BVN right away!