PhonePe, which has the most market share by the number of UPI transactions, now supports international payments through which Indians travelling abroad can pay foreign merchants using UPI. This makes it the first fintech platform in the country to have such a facility.
The transactions would work just as they would with an international debit card, and the foreign currency will be deducted from the user’s bank account.
According to the company, international merchant outlets in the UAE, Singapore, Nepal, and Bhutan that have a local QR code are supported.
A PhonePe user can activate the bank account that is linked to UPI for UPI international on the app. The company said this can either be done at the location where they wish to make the payment or prior to the trip, and requires the user to enter the UPI pin to activate the service. With this facility, a customer wouldn't need a credit card or forex card for making payments outside India.
“UPI international is the first major step in letting the rest of the world experience UPI too. I am sure this launch will prove to be a gamechanger and will completely transform the way Indians traveling overseas pay at merchant outlets abroad,” said Rahul Chari, the company’s co-founder and CTO.
UPI International is expected to be rolled out to more countries. Last month, the National Payments Corporation of India said that NRIs from 10 countries—Singapore, Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Oman, Qatar, USA, Saudi Arabia, UAE and the United Kingdom—will soon be allowed to make UPI payments without an Indian phone number.