One of the major inconveniences about the GrabPay wallet was the fact it’s essentially a closed-loop system. Funds, once inside, could not be withdrawn again- it’s why everyone hates that guy who pays them back with GrabPay instead of PayNow.
|GrabPay Funds Transfer|
But Grab’s realised this is a big impediment to GrabPay adoption, and has moved to address it. Effective 8 February 2021, it’s possible to transfer funds out of your GrabPay Wallet to bank accounts and other e-wallets in Singapore, with no fees involved.
A maximum of 2 transfers can be made per day to bank accounts or e-wallets, and each transaction is capped at S$5,000. Transfers to your own account will not count towards your annual GrabPay spending limit of S$30,000, but transfers to other accounts will.
What GrabPay wallet funds can I transfer?
Now I realise some of you may already be seeing dollar signs. “If I top up my GrabPay wallet with the AMEX True Cashback Card and then cash out the balance to my bank account, I’ll be earning 1.5% out of nowhere- who needs GME?”
Cute, but Grab’s obviously not that dumb. Your GrabPay wallet will be split into two categories: a non-transferrable balance, and a transferrable balance. Funds topped up from credit cards or foreign debit cards cannot be transferred out; they can only be spent within the Grab ecosystem (e.g on GrabFood and rides).
Funds from other sources, such as local debit cards and QR codes, can be transferred out.
|Non-Transferable Balance||Transferable Balance|
|Source of Balance|
|Balance can be used for|
|*This seems to suggest that you can no longer top-up your GrabPay account with a credit card, then send those funds to a friend|
Even though you can’t use this as an infinite loop for credit card rewards, this doesn’t mean it’s useless. I can think of three possible use cases here:
- You could use this to clock S$500 on the Singlife Visa Debit Card to trigger the bonus 0.5% p.a interest under the Save Spend Earn campaign
- You could top up S$10 using Google Pay and your GrabPay QR code, triggering 1x scratch card and 1x Huat Pal
- Mark this as speculative, but the Maybank Platinum Debit Card gives 0.4 miles per S$5 on all local spending, and I don’t see GrabPay top-ups under their exclusion list…
Unfortunately, the following won’t work:
- The Razer Prepaid Card offers 1% cashback on all purchases, but the T&Cs exclude GrabPay top-ups
- The UOB One Debit Card earns 1% cashback on Grab, but excludes GrabPay top-ups
- The OCBC Yes! Debit Card earns 1% cashback on Grab, but excludes GrabPay top-ups
- Spending S$800 per month on the HSBC Everyday Global Debit Card unlocks bonus interest of 0.14-0.34% p.a, but GrabPay top-ups are excluded
If you have any other bright ideas, do give a shout out below.
Where can I transfer GrabPay wallet funds?
Your GrabPay transferrable balance can be cashed out to:
- A PayNow-linked bank account
- A PayNow-registered mobile user
- Other bank accounts with the recipient’s bank name, account number and account holder’s name
- Other e-wallets in Singapore
Cash outs to other e-wallets are currently limited to LiquidPay, MatchMove, Razer Pay, Singtel Dash, and TransferWise.
The transfer feature will appear under your GrabPay Wallet tab in the Grab app. I don’t see it yet in mine, but here’s the screenshot provided by Grab. I assume it will be added with the next app update.
Before you can transfer any funds, you’ll need to verify your identity and upgrade to a Premium GrabPay wallet (the process is free). You’ll also be required to set up a GrabPIN, if you’ve not already done so.
A big day for GrabPay, as it moves towards a more open-ended ecosystem. While you won’t be able to use this as a means of churning credit card rewards, there may still be some use cases with certain debit cards in Singapore.
If nothing else, it brings GrabPay closer to a “true” cash solution.
Any other ideas come to mind?