YouTrip In Comparison To Other Digital Wallets In Malaysia

Recently, YouTrip announced that it will make its services available to the rest of SEA, starting with Malaysia and the Philippines.

The Singaporean digital wallet essentially simplifies the process of exchanging money when it comes to spending abroad.

Through its app and physical debit card, users can pay for goods and services in different currencies. They also boast that they do not charge any additional foreign exchange (forex) fees when transacting for overseas travel or online shopping.

But with the existing digital wallets in our market right now, such as BigPay, MAE, and Merchantrade Money (Merchantrade), some Malaysians are questioning the advantage of YouTrip.

At the moment, there is no firm date for YouTrip to launch in Malaysia or any indication of how the product will work here if it locates its offerings.

Nonetheless, here are 8 features we can expect based on how it works today in Singapore and Thailand. We compared them to the 3 Malaysian digital wallets mentioned earlier.

The SGD to Malaysian Ringgit currency exchange rate (SGD = RM3.05) below for ease of understanding Malaysians is correct at the time of writing.

1. Multi-currency portfolio

YouTrip can hold up to 10 different currencies / Image credit: YouTrip and Unsplash

YouTrip is Singapore’s first multi-currency mobile wallet due to its ability to hold up to 10 different currencies in one account.

Dictionary time: A multi-currency wallet is a feature that allows you to preload several different foreign currencies into your digital wallet at once.

“It’s like having a bureau de change in your pocket,” its co-founder and CEO, Cecelia, said in an interview with Vulcan Post.

MAE: N / A. It can only contain Malaysian ringgit.

BigPay: N / A. It can only contain Malaysian ringgit.

Trader: Pre-charge up to 20 different foreign currencies.

2. No minimum balance

Dictionary time: Some digital wallets have an initial top-up requirement when you first sign up for an account. Put simply, this minimum balance is there so you don’t walk around with empty pockets.

YouTrip does not have one. When you sign up, users won’t be prompted to top up a minimum balance. There is also no annual fee to maintain your account.

MAE: RM8 will be charged for successful application for those who are not from a previous Maybank account. The annual fee of RM8 is for the MAE physical debit card.

BigPay: You have to top up RM20 when registering and there is an annual fee of RM8.

Trader: There is a membership fee of RM 10 for the card. From then on, a minimum of RM20 should be kept in your card at all times. The annual fee for an account is RM 8 (the first year is waived).

3. Accepted at any merchant who accepts Mastercard

Since the onset of the pandemic, YouTrip has started allowing users to shop online from foreign brands / Image credit: YouTrip

The YouTrip card can be used anywhere Mastercard is accepted in Singapore and around the world, whether online or in stores.

MAE: Can be used worldwide, as long as the merchant accepts VISA.

BigPay: Can be used anywhere a Mastercard is accepted.

Trader: Can be used at any merchant that accepts VISA. Merchantrade also supports Western Union transfers.

4. Wholesale exchange rate and no transaction fees

YouTrip will apply competitive wholesale exchange rates for purchases using the card and online transactions.

Dictionary time: Wholesale exchange rates are the exchange rates used by banks, large corporations, and public and private institutions for large volume foreign exchange transactions.

Youtrip

There are also no currency conversion fees (also known as transaction fees).

Dictionary time: A currency conversion fee is a tax imposed by the credit or debit card payment processor or the ATM network to convert one currency to another as part of a financial transaction.

Investopedia

MAE: Foreign currency transactions are automatically converted from Malaysian ringgit on the basis of competitive exchange rates. These prices also apply when shopping online from foreign brands. The transaction fees are not clear.

BigPay: Its forex is based on Mastercard exchange rates and there are no transaction fees for overseas payments.

Trader: Determined by Visa’s international exchange rates, there is a currency conversion fee of 1% of the transaction amount. But if you are paying with the multi-currency wallet abroad, these additional charges will not apply.

5. Annual transaction and credit limits

YouTrip does not have a daily transaction limit but an annual limit of S $ 30,000 (RM91,377.30).

The credit limit is 5,000 Singapore dollars (15,229.55 RM).

Dictionary time: The credit limit is the maximum amount of money that you are allowed to hold in your account at any one time.

MAE: There is a maximum purchase limit of RM 10,000 per month. Because his system is tied to a bank, he has no credit limit.

BigPay: The purchase limit follows your account balance, where the credit limit is RM 10,000. Credit card top-ups are capped at a maximum of RM 1,000 per month.

Trader: The card has a daily transaction limit of RM250, while its wallet has a credit limit of RM 10,000. However, there is an upgrade available for some users to keep a maximum of RM19,980 (or equivalent currencies) in the wallet.

6. Withdrawals at ATMs abroad

YouTrip allows users to withdraw money from any Mastercard, Maestro or Cirrus ATMs abroad for a flat fee of S $ 5 (RM15.27) or the foreign currency equivalent per transaction.

Additional fees may be applied by foreign banks, which will usually be displayed in ATMs prior to withdrawal.

There is a maximum annual ATM withdrawal of S $ 30,000 (RM91,591.19) or the equivalent in other currencies.

MAE: Free ATM withdrawals from all Maybank ATMs nationwide. However, the ATM withdrawal fee abroad is RM12, and its limit will follow the amount you set on your account.

BigPay: RM6 withdrawal fees for local ATMs and RM10 overseas. The daily withdrawal limit is RM 10,000.

Trader: Withdrawals at local ATMs cost RM 1.40 and RM 10 abroad at international Visa Plus ATMs. There is a withdrawal limit of 5,000 RM (or the equivalent in available currencies) per day.

7. Expense tracking

This feature allows users to track paid transactions through the app and YouTrip card.

The transactions are grouped by dates and listed with the names of the traders as well as the amounts paid next to them.

MAE: Track spending for Maybank accounts, cards, QR transactions, and even cash. These transactions can be sorted by categories such as food, utilities, and shopping.

MAE expenditure tracking function

BigPay: Similar to MAE, with the added benefit of taking photos of your receipts.

Trader: Expense tracking is available for transactions made in the app or card.

8. Double as a public transport card

YouTrip doubles as an EZ-Link card (equivalent to TNG in Malaysia). Singaporean users can use the YouTrip card for public transport in Singapore and 20 other cities, including Kuala Lumpur, Sydney and New York.

To do so, they can simply activate the Mastercard Account Based (ABT) ticketing feature of the app to take advantage of this functionality.

MAE: A similar feature is its ability to purchase a one-way ticket or return KLIA Ekspres tickets through the app.

BigPay: The BigPay card allows users to pay for bus and MRT rides in Singapore and London. Unfortunately, BigPay does not yet have this feature in Malaysia.

Trader: N / A.

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Here is a table to summarize several main points at a glance.

YouTripMAEBigPayTrader
Multi-currency portfolioYesNoNoYes
The minimum balanceNoYesYesYes
Merchants acceptedMasterCardVISAMasterCardVISA
Currency conversion ratesNoN / ANoYes
Credit limitYesNoYesYes

Overall, the most similar app to YouTrip is Merchantrade, due to its ability to hold multiple currencies.

The two digital wallets also allow you to easily buy and sell currencies when the rates are right through the app. Once you buy foreign currencies, they stay locked in at that rate and don’t fluctuate.

This means that if you were to buy 1 SGD at the current exchange rate of 3.05 RM, it will remain frozen at that rate even if it increases or decreases in the future.

These digital wallets are especially valuable for those who travel often for business trips or who employ foreign workers who receive their wages in the currency of their home country.

It will be interesting to see how the two fight over market share once YouTrip finally gets here.

  • You can read more about what we wrote about other apps here.

Featured Image Credit: YouTrip

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Jothi Venkat

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