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  • Writer's pictureRagunandhan Senthil Kumar

Payment Innovations to Curb the Spread of COVID-19

It is a known fact that banknotes move from one person to another, bringing along germs with it, so it is possible for these notes to pass on the COVID-19 virus to whoever’s handling cash. So in an effort to curb the spread of COVID-19, the World Health Organization encouraged early on that people use digital payment options instead. Thanks to technological innovations brought about by financial institutions and the FinTech industry, there are numerous non-cash payment options to replace the traditional cash payment system. 

Credit and Debit Cards

Credit and debit cards are banking cards issued by banks that can be used for cashless payments. This is one of the most popular cashless payment methods around the world as it can be used in a variety of ways — via card details to shop at e-commerce platforms, via point of sales terminals where simply tapping a card will confirm the transaction, or via account details which can then be used to do online banking. Owning a banking card can result in a variety of non-cash payment options. 

QR Code Payments

A QR (Quick Response) code is a barcode that looks like scattered black squares arranged on a grid. These can be scanned on both paper and screens using a smartphone or mobile device with a built-in camera. QR codes can be used for merchant payments and bank transfers. The customer simply has to scan the QR code for this cashless payment to go through. 

Gift Cards

Even though the name has the word gift in it, gift cards or vouchers aren’t just a great gift because it’s also a way for you to go cashless. This ready-made card that can be purchased from select merchants or from banks is pre-loaded with a fixed amount of cash. 

Unstructured Supplementary Service Data 

The Unstructured Supplementary Service Data, also known as USSD, is for those who don’t have a smartphone but have a mobile phone. In this cashless payment method, a USSD code is dialed and used to pay for bills. However, the mobile phone of the user needs to be linked to a bank account for the transaction to go through. 

Mobile Wallets 

Mobile wallets are mobile applications on one’s mobile device that enables the user to transfer, receive, and store money by linking it to their bank accounts. The user can also use their phone number to send and receive money, and pay bills. Mobile wallets are secure and a very convenient way to do cashless payments due to its accessibility and numerous options. 

These payment innovations can be found all over the world. However, not every financial institution or merchant offers the above, and in the time of social distancing, these payment innovations are more important than ever to limit the spread of COVID-19. Financial institutions can partner with the FinTech industry to bring innovations to the forefront, and one such company is Bank-Genie

To support cashless transactions, Bank-Genie’s solutions can digitize the bank’s manual processes. Genie-Wallet is one such solution that facilitates numerous digital payment options all through a mobile application. 

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