WorldRemit Report: Filipino Households Devote Over Half of Income to Education Expenses

A recent report by WorldRemit revealed that educational costs in Filipino households have become a significant financial burden, with more than 51% of their monthly income being allocated to cover these expenses. The study, conducted across 21 countries, compared the prices of school supplies such as uniforms, stationery, and bags from 2022 to 2023, and found that the cost of school supplies in the Philippines increased by 16%.

Earl Melivo, Head of Asia Pacific at WorldRemit, emphasized the impact of the rising costs, particularly when considering the frequency of use of these school supplies. As children tend to go through stationery like pencils more quickly compared to uniforms, the cumulative effect of higher costs becomes apparent over time, especially for households with multiple students.

WorldRemit observed an interesting trend regarding remittances sent to the Philippines during June and July, likely to pay for tuition fees and school supplies in preparation for the opening of classes in August.

The report also highlighted the global economic circumstances and their effect on educational expenses. In approximately 40% of the observed countries, families were expected to spend more than their monthly income on school supplies. Notably, countries outside of North America, Europe, and Australia experienced even more significant differences in cost, with average yearly increases reaching 78%.

The data from the United Nations indicated that 1 in 9 people worldwide relies on money sent from family and friends who have migrated abroad for work. For the Philippines, 7% of households have a family member working as an Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW), and 75% of them receive regular remittances from these OFWs. In 2022, the Philippines ranked third in the Asia and Pacific region for remittance inflows, highlighting the importance of these funds for many Filipino families.

According to Melivo, education stands as one of the primary reasons for remittance flows. For families whose monthly income just meets their daily needs, remittances from overseas play a crucial role in enabling them to afford essential school supplies, as well as managing other significant expenses like tuition, transportation, and childcare.

WorldRemit, a leading global payments company and part of the Zepz group along with Sendwave, has played a pivotal role in disrupting the traditional offline remittance industry by making international money transfers safer, faster, and more cost-effective through online channels. With operations in over 5,000 money transfer corridors worldwide and a commitment to digital (cashless) transactions, WorldRemit provides increased convenience and enhanced security for its users.

As the company continues to grow, it remains backed by reputable investors such as Accel, TCV, and Leapfrog. Headquartered in London, United Kingdom, WorldRemit has regional offices in various countries, including the United States, Poland, Canada, Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines, South Africa, Somaliland, Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and Belgium.

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