E-Wallets in Malaysia – Which one should you choose?

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Malaysians have been using e-wallets for a while now and more evidently since the COVID-19 pandemic happened. With people working and staying at home more, e-wallets like Grabpay, Boost and Touch N Go have become part and parcel of everyday transactions.

Convenient for everyone

E-wallets can be easily used by almost anyone. You can have several e-wallets installed on your smartphone which allows you contactless payment for transactions, pay bills or transfer funds. At the moment, Touch N Go e-wallet, GrabPay and several others are most popular while most banks offer their own e-wallet functions through their respective e-banking services.

A new player in MyMy

Bank Negara Malaysia recently announced that conditional approval has been given to MyMy Payments Malaysia for a large scheme electric money license. This means a new e-wallet brand would most likely enter the market by end of 2021. They intend to be the first company in Malaysia that will offer a real multi-currency account and card.

Other e-wallets in Malaysia

Meanwhile, the current list of e-wallets are offering all types of services to provide better convenience and functions for its users. They include:

  • Boost – Owned by the Axiata Group, it has more than 140,000 touchpoints in Malaysia and is integrated with UnionPay cards. Besides that, Boost also gives cashback for customers using this platform in Shell petrol stations.
  • GrabPay – Integrated with its Grab platform, you can use this e-wallet to pay for rides, order food and pay bills too. You can also use it on other platforms through its partnership with Maybank.
  • Touch ‘n Go eWallet – Offers easy transfer of funds (up to RM5,000 per month) and it is integrated with many other platforms like Alipay and Google Play. There are now more than 150,000 points across the country that accepts Touch ‘n Go while you can use it for tolls too. Besides that, you can pay for parking, book bus tickets and others.
  • Razer Pay – A growing e-wallet brand with more than 1,000 merchants and integrated with the 7-Eleven chain. A popular payment platform for gamers, you can buy PIN codes for your Sony Playstation and other systems.
  • WeChat Pay – You can use WeChat Pay for transactions in KK Supermart, among others. Malaysia is currently the first country outside China where WeChat Pay is available with the local Ringgit. You can also use it to buy bus and air tickets and pay for prepaid topups.
  • MAE – Maybank’s e-wallet solution and one of the latest players in the market, you get a virtual (and physical) debit card that is connected to your e-wallet. Basically, you can use this in more than 200,000 QRPay merchants nationwide and you do not necessarily need a Maybank account for this.
  • BigPay – AirAsia has a majority share in this which comes with a Mastercard debit card. You can withdraw funds from an ATM and make retail purchases. BigPay is integrated with the Big Loyalty Programme by AirAsia.

So, how should you choose?

Basically, you should have a few e-wallets in your stable and not all of them. This makes it easier to manage your money and control your spending. As a rule of thumb, you should have:

  • Bank account related – The MAE would be a good option if you are Maybank account holder as it is connected to you your savings (preferably spending) account.
  • Groceries – Boost or GrabPay would be ideal since you use it to pay for food and related purchases.
  • Everything else – For this, the Touch N’Go e-wallet would be an excellent choice since you will need to pay for parking, tolls and to transfer funds occasionally to your friends and families.

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