Safaricom M-PESA menu items

If you live in Kenya by now you have heard of many people talking about M-PESA. If you are new to the country, you have probably seen signs all over with the words M-PESA – mostly on green backgrounds – one of the colours used a lot by the mobile phone service provider Safaricom.

Today I am going to briefly talk about the different menu items available in this popular mobile money wallet.

But first I am going to show you the various ways you can access M-PESA on your Safaricom line.

How to access M-PESA services / menu on your device

Access M-PESA services via the Safaricom SIM Toolkit menu

  • To use this method, go to your device’s main menu
  • Tap on the Safaricom SIM icon
  • Then select M-PESA

Here’s how the M-PESA menu looks like when you access your account via the SIM Toolkit method:

  • Send Money
  • Withdraw Cash
  • Buy Airtime
  • Loans and Savings
  • Lipa na M-PESA
  • My Account

Dial *234# to access M-PESA services

  • Dial *234# on your feature phone, smartphone, tablet, laptop or desktop computer (if using your SIM in a modem or router)
  • Select option 6: M-PESA Services (Send Money, Withdraw Cash, Buy Airtime, Lipa na M-PESA, My Account)
  • Or select option 1: M-PESA Products > 1: M-Shwari (for M-Shwari)
  • Or select option 4: Merchant Services > 2: Make Payments (To Mobile number, To Buy goods, To Paybill)

Here’s how the M-PESA menu looks like when you dial *234#

  • Fuliza M-PESA
  • M-PESA Products
  • M-PESA Business Till
  • M-PESA Agent Services
  • Merchant Services
  • M-PESA Information
  • M-PESA Services
  • Insurance Premium Financing
  • M-PESA Promos
  • M-Biashara

Dial *456# to use your M-PESA account

  • Dial *456#
  • Select option 5: M-PESA
  • Everything from here is similar to the menu you get when you dial *234#

Access the M-PESA menu using the USSD shortcode *100#

  • Dial *100#
  • Select option 4: MPESA
  • Everything from here is similar to the menu you get when you dial *234# (list show above)
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What can you do with M-PESA?

Now let’s take a look at some of the things you can do when you access M-PESA via your Safaricom SIM Toolkit menu / USSD codes above.

Send Money

Use this option whenever you want to send money to someone. You can send money to other Safaricom subscribers (with or without an M-PESA account), Airtel Kenya users, Telkom Kenya customers and even Equitel phone numbers.

  • Just tap / press on the Send Money option
  • Search SIM contacts or enter the phone number of the person you want to send money to e.g. 0704123456
  • Press OK
  • Enter amount of money to send e.g. 2500 (for 2500 Kenya Shillings) and press OK
  • Enter M-PESA PIN e.g. 1234
  • Press OK
  • Confirm the details are correct (amount and recipient’s phone number) and press OK again
    Normally you’ll then have a look at the details one last time and have a 25 second delay – courtesy of M-PESA Hakikisha – in which you can enter any number or letter to stop the transaction e.g. if you find something wrong with the details (and you don’t want your money to end up with the wrong recipient).

And if you do end up sending money to the wrong person / number, you can actually reverse the transaction. I talk about that in this article: How to reverse Safaricom M-PESA money sent to wrong number.

Withdraw Cash

Use this option to withdraw money from your M-PESA account.

Say, someone sends you money to your account and you need the cash in your hands, all you have to do is carry your ID (national ID or passport), your phone and then visit a location where you can withdraw the amount of money you want. You can:

  • visit M-PESA agents. Most shops also double up as Safaricom M-PESA agents
  • visit a bank or Sacco and withdraw your money from there
  • Or you can withdraw money in your M-PESA account from an ATM especially after , or even, during business hours

To withdraw money

  • Just enter the agent number e.g. 234567. You’ll usually find the number on a poster / wall
  • Enter amount to withdraw factoring in withdrawal charges / fees
  • Press OK
  • Enter your M-PESA PIN and press OK
  • Then wait for 1. The details to reflect on their end, 2. For them to hand you your money once you’ve signed.
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Buy Airtime

Use this option to buy airtime for your line or another Safaricom line. Whenever you are running low on credit and have money in your M-PESA account, do the following.

To buy airtime for your line

  • Select Buy Airtime > My phone
  • Enter amount of airtime you want to purchase from your Safaricom M-PESA account e.g. 250
  • Press OK
  • Enter your M-PESA PIN and press OK
  • When you see ‘Buy Airtime for My phone KSH 250’ press OK

Learn more in this post: How to top up Safaricom number: scratch card, M-PESA, online or Equitel.

To buy airtime for another Safaricom line

  • Select Buy Airtime > Other phone
  • Search SIM contacts / phone book or enter the number manually e.g. 0704123456 and press OK
  • Enter amount of airtime you want to purchase for the other Safaricom number from your M-PESA account e.g. 200
  • Press OK
  • Enter your M-PESA PIN and press OK
  • When you see ‘Buy Airtime for Other phone 0704123456 KSH 200’
  • Press OK

Learn more in this post: How to top up other Safaricom number: buy airtime on M-PESA or online or use scratch cards.

Loans and Savings

Use this option to save money or request loans on your mobile phone via the M-PESA menu.

You can save / borrow money using M-Shwari or KCB M-PESA.

Here are the items under each service.

M-Shwari

  • Send to M-Shwari (use this to take money from M-PESA and save in M-Shwari)
  • Withdraw from M-Shwari (use this to put money in your M-Shwari account back into your M-PESA main account)
  • Lock Savings Account (Open Account, Save, Withdraw, Check Balance or get Mini Statement)
  • Check Balance
  • Mini Statement

KCB M-PESA

  • Deposit from M-PESA
  • Withdraw to M-PESA
  • Loan (Request Loan, Pay Loan & Check Loan Limit)
  • Fixed Savings Accounts (Fixed Deposit & Target Savings Account)
  • My Account (Check Balance & Mini Statement)

Lipa na M-PESA

Use this option to pay for goods and services using the two options:

  1. Pay Bill
  2. Buy Goods and Services

When you visit an establishment or make a purchase online, you will find instructions on which one (1 or 2) to use.

For business owners / or those interested in taking online payments, learn how to get your Lipa na M-PESA number with the help of the team at Kopo Kopo.

READ  How to reverse Safaricom M-PESA money sent to wrong number

You can use this option at supermarkets, fuel stations, to pay school fees, buy domain names, buy web hosting, buy shoes and clothes, buy airtime for other networks (e.g. Telkom, Airtel and Equitel) among other things.

  • Use M-PESA to shop online. Pay for purchases you make online easily.
  • Top up your PayPal account using M-PESA (or withdraw money from PayPal to your M-PESA account)
  • Use M-PESA to pay bills. See a list of paybill numbers / companies / products and services you can already send money to via M-PESA on Niabusiness KE here.
  • Use M-PESA to top up debit cards. Load money from your M-PESA account to your VISA, Mastercard and American Express debit cards.

My Account

Use this option to manage your M-PESA account via the following options:

  • Mini Statement (use this method or dial *234# > M-PESA Services > My Account > Mini Statement to get your M-PESA mini statement)
  • Check Balance (check how much money you have left in your M-PESA account. You’ll get your balance details via SMS)
  • Change PIN (change your PIN. Use something new. A combination that is hard to guess – and then keep it a secret)
  • Change Language (change the language of your M-PESA menu from English to Kiswahili or vice versa)
  • Update Customer Menu (whenever Safaricom rolls out new features, use this option to update your M-PESA menu. If there’s something that should be on the menu that is missing, use this option)

That is all. If you send money to the wrong person, you might be interested in the post about M-PESA reversals.

If you want to read my other posts, check the Safaricom category here.

If you want to check my recent posts, go to Niabusiness.com/ke.

To share your experiences and tips as an M-PESA user, leave a comment below.

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