First Bank has informed its customers that the Personal Travel Allowance (PTA) and Business Travel Allowance (BTA) will now be transferred to the FirstBank Travel Card.
This was disclosed in an email seen by Nairametrics titled “Updates on FX Purchase”.
The bank further indicated that PTA/BTA sales are limited to two quarters per year and that only applicants with approved Form A are eligible for payout.
The Personal Travel Allowance (PTA) and Business Travel Allowance (BTA) are ways for Nigerians to benefit from the official exchange rate, which trades in the N435/$ range. However, Nairametrics reported earlier that many applicants are facing difficult experiences in accessing PTA.
The situation is exacerbated by the massive disparity in official and black market values, which has grown to a stunning N271. The parallel market exchange rate is roughly N705/$.
What the Bank is saying
“The full Personal Travel Allowance (PTA) and Business Travel Allowance (BTA) ($4,000 and $5,000) respectively will now be disbursed into your FirstBank Travel Card. All applications will be in line with Regulatory Requirements.”
“Kindly ensure that all PTA/BTA applications along with the approved Form A are submitted at the branch exactly 14 days before your proposed travel date. Sales is limited to two quarters a year.” bank added
The banks stated that processing time for school fees is at least 30 days after the submission of supporting documentation and the authorized Form A at the branch, with a cap of $15,000 each semester and a maximum of two semesters per session.
First bank added that applications for upkeep must be processed within a minimum of 30 days and are only eligible for upkeep for a maximum of $3,000 (or its equivalent in other currencies) every semester and a maximum of two semesters per session. If the school fee was not paid through FirstBank, proof of payment for the current session will also be needed.
The bank added, “Please be informed that a Form M must accompany applications for Form Q, subject to a maximum of $20,000 and limited to 2 quarters a financial year.”
What you should know
The names, Bank Verification Numbers (BVNs), and account numbers of clients who obtained foreign currency under false pretense and refused to return it have been made public by some Nigerian banks.
This comes after the Central Bank of Nigeria instructed banks to reveal clients who use dishonest and shady methods to gain foreign currency from banks.
Although the First Bank forex defaulter list has yet to be released, this step has made it more difficult for First Bank clients to profitably sell forex obtained from the official window in the black market.