Amaze Wallet to charge 2% fee for GrabPay and e-wallet top-ups

From 5 July 2023, Amaze will end fee-free cash outs by charging a 2% fee on all GrabPay/e-wallet top-ups, including those funded by the Amaze Wallet.

Back In February 2023, Amaze added a 2% transaction fee on GrabPay and other e-wallet top-ups. Fortunately, this fee only applied if a linked card was used as the source of funds. There would be no fee if an Amaze Wallet was used.

But that’s going to change from 5 July 2023, when Amaze extends this 2% fee for GrabPay/e-wallet top-ups to all transactions regardless of funding source.

Starting from July 5, 2023, a fee of 2% (minimum $0.50 SGD) will be applicable to domestic (SGD) transactions involving GrabPay, prepaid cards and other e-wallet top-ups, when using amaze linked to your wallet.

-Amaze

This, unfortunately, means the end of fee-free cash outs of Amaze Wallet balances. If you have any money in Amaze, it’d be a good time to start making exit plans. 

Amaze adding 2% fee for e-wallet transactions

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Use code 7HK2A2 for 225 bonus InstaPoints
💳 tl;dr: Amaze Card
  • Link up to five Mastercard credit/debit cards
  • Overseas transactions are converted into SGD (no FCY transaction fees, but subject to FX spread) and charged to the underlying credit/debit card
  • Transaction MCC remains the same, offline transactions charged to Amaze become online transactions for the underlying credit/debit card
  • Earn 1 InstaPoint per S$1 spent on FCY transactions of at least S$10 (except exclusion categories), capped at 500 InstaPoints per transaction
  • Redeem InstaPoints for cashback in blocks of 2,000 InstaPoints= S$20

First, some brief background. 

Amaze cardholders earn InstaPoints for spending and referrals. These InstaPoints can be redeemed for cashback at the following rates:

InstaPointsCashback
2,000S$20
10,000S$100
50,000S$500
A 400 InstaPoints = S$5 option exists, but that’s not cashback. Instead, it’s a discount voucher for your next Instarem FX transfer

Cashback earned is credited to your Amaze Wallet balance.

While you can’t cash out an Amaze Wallet balance directly to a bank account, there is a workaround:

  1. Use the Amaze Card (with the Amaze Wallet selected as the funding source) to top-up an e-wallet such as GrabPay
  2. Transfer the GrabPay balance out to your bank account

This is possible because the Amaze Card is a debit card; unlike credit cards, GrabPay allows balances originating from debit cards to be transferred to a bank account.

However, this workaround will no longer be free from 5 July 2023, when Amaze implements a 2% fee (min. S$0.50) on all SGD transactions involving GrabPay, prepaid cards and other e-wallet top-ups, when using the Amaze Wallet as a funding source. 

The transactions subject to the 2% fee include but are not limited to the following:

MCCExamples
6540 (Non-Financial Institutions- Stored Value Card Purchase/Load)GrabPay wallet, ShopeePay, Revolut, CRO, YouTrip
6211 (Security Brokers/Dealers)Xmglobal, Plus500, eToro, IG.com
6051 (Quasi Cash Merchants)Coinhako, Coinbase, Wirex, Kucoin
OthersEZ-Link wallet top-ups and TransitLink General Ticketing Machines

This will make it much harder to zero out an Amaze Wallet balance. While you can spend it on retail transactions via the Amaze Card, the problem is that funding sources cannot be combined. If my Amaze Wallet has a S$100 balance, for example, I won’t be able to use it for a transaction costing S$105 (it’s not possible to deduct S$100 from the Wallet and S$5 from a linked card).

It seems like Instarem is determined to nudge people to spend their Amaze Wallet balances within the Amaze ecosystem, by using sticks like this and carrots like 4X InstaPoints for Amaze Wallet spend. 

Tips for cashing out your balance

Fortunately, Amaze has given some notice here, so you have roughly 2.5 weeks left to zero out your Amaze Wallet balance via e-wallet top-ups. 

If you plan to do this via GrabPay, do note that each GrabPay top-up must be at least S$10 and in whole dollars (i.e. no cents). If you have an odd balance in your Amaze Wallet, don’t worry. You can top it up further using a credit card, then cash out the whole amount. 

For example, suppose I have S$8.29 in my Amaze Wallet. This is insufficient for a GrabPay top-up, but I can:

  1. Top-up S$21.71 using my credit card (Amaze requires a minimum top-up of S$20, and charges a 2% fee for Visa cards, so stick to Mastercard)
  2. Use the S$30 Amaze Wallet balance to top-up GrabPay
  3. Cash out S$30 from GrabPay to my bank account

For avoidance of doubt, Amaze Wallet top-ups code as MCC 6540 (POI Funding Transactions), and will not earn rewards with any card in Singapore

Conclusion

Amaze: really being drawn and quartered!

From 5 July 2023, Amaze will be applying a 2% fee to all GrabPay and e-wallet top-ups, regardless of funding source. This will add more friction to cashing out Amaze Wallet balances, and if you have any money left inside I’d recommend getting it out before the clock strikes 12.

(HT: Euphorius)

Aaron Wong
Aaron Wong
Aaron founded The Milelion to help people travel better for less and impress chiobu. He was 50% successful.

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