Budgeting & Saving

Best Mobile Payment Methods in Singapore

Read about the current mobile payment apps in Singapore and the best way to enjoy them!

In the last 1 to 2 years, mobile payments have taken Singapore by storm, and recent studies have shown that mobile payment transactions are growing at around 40% annually. With a high mobile phone penetration rate in Singapore, it is no wonder that Singaporeans are quick to embrace the convenience of paying via their phone. We look at some ways you can pay-on-the-go with your mobile phones and how you can save money and enjoy discounts, all at the same time while enjoying the convenience of this payment method.

Mobile Payment Apps

1. Dash

Dash is the brainchild of 2 commercial powerhouse – Standard Chartered Bank and Singtel – that aims to change the way Singaporeans access, save, borrow and pay money. Dash Pay is a digital wallet that allows users to pay merchants without any administrative fees. The payment process is simple – open the Dash app, log in with your phone number and PIN code and tap on “pay business”. The service is one of the most established in Singapore, supporting some 20,000 locations in Singapore ranging from retail, food outlets and even taxi services. Another cool thing about this app? You can pay your friend using Dash Pay as well, making it easy to split the dinner bill.

2. DBS Paylah!

DBS Paylah! is a mobile payment app launched by DBS bank which allows you to shop and pay, send money, make donations and even request for funds from others! You will need to have a savings/current account with the bank and be above 16 years old . DBS Paylah also has its own partner merchants, including Qoo10.sg, Courts and MSIG TravellerShield. They are currently offering cash credit of up to $10 for new registrations for Paylah!

Mobile Digital Wallet

1. Apple Pay

Apple Pay was officially launched in Singapore this year and marks the advent of mobile phone digital wallets here. Since then, we've seen the launch of Samsung Pay and Android Pay as well. The ease of using these mobile digital wallets means that consumers no longer need to carry their cards with them for payment anymore. Transactions are also much faster compared to fumbling for your wallet in the depths of your bag. Paying in stores only requires you to hold your iPhone near the card reader with your finger on the Touch ID. You can even pay within mobile apps and on the web without creating an account!

American Express was the first credit card company to announce that their clients can now use Apple Pay to make payments using their iPhone, iPad or Apple Watch. By using your Amex card through Apple Pay, you get to receive the same rewards and benefits as you would if you had chosen to pay by your credit card at no additional costs! Since then, Apple Pay is now available with debit and credit cards from DBS, OCBC, POSB, Standard Chartered and UOB.

2. Android Pay

Android Pay is Google’s mobile digital wallet and while it's functions are similar to that of Apple Pay, there are a number of key differences. For one, it is more inclusive in the sense that you do not need the latest smartphone models as long as they contain Near Field Communications(NFC) wireless technology. It also does not require fingerprint or PIN for authentication for each transaction. One of the benefits of Android Pay is that you can include rewards card, making it easier to earn rewards points even if you are not using a certain credit card to pay for it. While it is a latecomer in the market, Android Pay has released a number of attractive promotions for its users, including 25% cashback when you use your DBS/POSB card on Android Pay and 50% off 10 rides on Uber.

Credit Cards

Credit card is still one of the most convenient ways for consumers to pay for their purchases online and on their mobile. Other than being safe and secure, they also reward users with a wide range of rewards, including reward points, air miles and cash rebates. With no apps to download, it remains one of the best ways to pay and even if mobile payments are prevalent now, many of these payment methods still require a working credit card.

In recent years, Visa and Mastercard have also introduced the contactless payment way to use your cards – simply wave your credit cards in front of a card reader at the sales counter and viola, your payment is made. Some of the best cards to use that rewards you with savings for going contactless includes:

  • UOB Delight Card: Get to enjoy up to 8% rebate on grocery shopping, 10% off house brands at Cold Storage and 3% rebate on contactless transactions, telco and insurance bills.
  • HSBC Credit Cards: Enjoy a free bottle of Coca-cola when you spend a minimum of $5 with Visa Paywave at 7-11 outlets, $2 off when you spend a minimum of $6 at Cheers and Fairprice Express, and get $1 off when you spend a minimum of $6 at Food Republic and Food Opera.
  • POSB EveryDay Card: use the card at Watsons to get a free $5 voucher when you use Mastercard PayPass with a minimum spend of $50. On top of this, you also get a 3% cash rebate with the card!
  • Mastercard: Use any MasterCard via MasterPass on the ComfortDelGro Taxi Booking App and enjoy a 10% admin fee waiver when you book a cab.

With so many ways to go cashless, how are you using your credit cards? Mobile, through apps or payment online? Drop us a comment to let us know your favourite way! Article written by Lynette Tan

Duckju Kang

Duckju (DJ) is the founder and CEO of ValueChampion. He covers the financial services industry, consumer finance products, budgeting and investing. He previously worked at hedge funds such as Tiger Asia and Cadian Capital. He graduated from Yale University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics with honors, Magna Cum Laude. His work has been featured on major international media such as CNBC, Bloomberg, CNN, the Straits Times, Today and more.