Wallets might be a thing of the past as e-wallets have taken over. 

Thanks to this push towards becoming a cashless society, we’ve seen a myriad of e-wallet options and other contactless payments that purport to make our retail experience more convenient and seamless.

Contactless Payment E-Wallet
Image Credit: Smart Nation Singapore

But with so many options available, and so many terms being thrown around, some of us might need a little help figuring it all out.

To help you shop smarter, here is our Guide to Understanding E-wallets.

What Is An E-Wallet?

An e-wallet is a way to carry your credit or debit card information in its digital form. This is extremely convenient as we can now have that information on a mobile device like a smartphone.

So instead of pulling out your wallet to pay for lunch, you can use your smartphone or smartwatch to do so!

Paying via Smartphone Mobile Wallet E-Wallet
Image Credit: leungchopan | shutterstock

Some of you might be thinking, “Ah… So an e-wallet is like Apple Pay for Apple devices, and either Google Pay or Samsung Pay for Android users?”


These options are a type of e-wallet. More specifically, they are mobile payment alternatives where your smartphone functions as a credit/debit card.

EZ-Link Logo
Image Credit: EZ-Link

Users of e-wallets will appreciate the ability to better track one’s expenses, but some might find topping up the account a bit of a hassle. However, many of these e-wallets also allow you to set up an auto-debit function when you link your bank account, thereby eliminating this problem.

DBS PayLah!

A good example of a mobile wallet that most of us would be familiar with is DBS PayLah!

DBS PayLah! Mobile Wallet E-Wallet Screenshot

Although they might sound similar, PayLah! offers much more than PayNow.

PayNow is a unified mobile payment system that lets you transfer funds amongst seven major banks with just a mobile or IC number.

PayLah! on the other hand, is a mobile wallet that allows you to send and receive money. You can do this via mobile numbers, QR codes, or payment links. However, both users have to be using the PayLah! app. You can also scan and pay at merchants with NETs terminals or the PayLah! QR code.

DBS PayLah! Mobile Wallet Features
Image Credit: DBS

Some other useful features include:

  • Auto Debit function (funds will be deducted from a designated bank account)
  • pay bills for over 44 billing organisations
  • buy travel insurance
  • purchase GV movie tickets
  • send e-Ang Baos

Android and Apple users also have the option to access PayLah! via fingerprint authentication or Touch ID (on selected devices only).


GrabPay Mobile Wallet E-Wallet Screenshot

GrabPay can be used for Grab rides as well as its food delivery service GrabFood. You’ll have to download GrabFood separately though.

There’s no Auto Debit function, but you can link a credit/debit card to either top up your wallet or make payment via GrabPay.

Similar to PayLah! you can send and receive money via QR codes or a payment link.

GrabPay Mobile Wallet E-Wallet Payment
Image Credit: Grab

The best thing about GrabPay is that you earn GrabRewards points on your rides, when you order a meal on GrabFood, and when you make in-store purchases with GrabPay. These points can eventually be exchanged for special offers and vouchers via their rewards page.

There’s also a tier system that rewards regular users with perks like lesser points required to redeem rides, accelerated GrabRewards points earned, and priority bookings.

Singtel Dash

Singtel Dash Mobile Wallet E-Wallet Screenshot

Users of the Dash app will appreciate the convenience of topping up the mobile wallet, especially if you’re also a Singtel customer. You can choose to top up the wallet:

  • By charging it to your Singtel Postpaid bill
  • Via your bank account through e-Nets
  • Via your credit/debit card.

You will also be given a Dash Visa Virtual Account which can be used anywhere that accepts Visa payWave.

Dash Mobile Wallet E-Wallet Contactless Payment
Image Credit: Singtel Dash

Any amount that you charge to this account is simply deducted from your Dash mobile wallet.

There are also periodic deals available through the app like discounts on dining and shopping, Cashback on travel insurance, and even free parking.

Razer Pay

Razer Pay Mobile Wallet E-Wallet Logo
Image Credit: Razer

Razer fans will be glad to know that their favourite gaming company has expanded their reach to the e-wallet scene. In short, Razer Pay is similar in nature to DBS PayLah! in that you can transfer funds to both merchants as well as your contacts. Of course, both have to be users of the Razer Pay app for it to work. Do take note that the maximum Razer Pay wallet balance is S$999 for verified accounts and S$400 for unverified accounts, so you can’t transfer large amount as compared to other e-wallets.


YouTrip Mobile Wallet E-Wallet
Image Credit: YouTrip

YouTrip is a multi-currency e-wallet which allows users to pay in more than 150 currencies when shopping overseas or online. You will also receive a YouTrip MasterCard for overseas transactions (wherever MasterCard is accepted).

Best of all, you do not have to pay any currency conversion or transaction fees that are typically charged by:

  • Banks
  • Money changers
  • Online currency conversion
  • Cross-border payments

So if you’re planning a shopping spree in Paris or wish to pay for your meals at London’s finest restaurants, you can use your YouTrip MasterCard and not have to worry about bringing stacks of cash just to avoid paying extra.

Stacks of Cash
Image Credit: tenor

e-Wallet are becoming increasingly popular and various business including e-commerce stores like AliExpress have their own – which makes it all the more reasons why you should inform yourself about this! Have a favourite mobile wallet that you think everyone should adopt? Let us know in the comments below.

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