#NowYouCan. That’s right! Well, at least, shopping with the Visa experience without getting any Visa Card from any bank! So how’s that made possible?

Last week, PLDT and Smart Communications, through its digital financial innovations arm – Smart eMoney, Inc. – launched in Cebu its newest product and service called PayMaya.

So what is PayMaya?

PayMaya AppIn a nutshell, PayMaya through its mobile app, allows users to instantly sign up and activate a virtual Visa card. The Visa card is technically not a credit card, but a debit card. It can be used to pay purchases from online merchants which accept Visa payments.

PayMaya though, is not just limited to having a virtual Visa card. Users have an option to upgrade their account allowing them to have a physical Visa card linked to the same PayMaya account.
PayMaya Visa CardLike any Visa card, the physical Visa card can be used on any establishment that accepts Visa payments. But again, since it’s a debit card, users have to load-up the PayMaya account with funds before making any transaction. Load-up centres include selected Smart stores and Smart Padala Centers, Robinsons Business Centers, and soon, at any 7-Eleven convenience stores. Reloading PayMaya can also be done by transferring funds from a Smart money account.

Breakthrough

I personally thought PayMaya is a breakthrough product considering the limitations of current mobile payment solutions like GCash or Smart Money in the country. eCommerce is on the uptrend, but most merchants offer payment options which require customers to have credit cards and only few offers lesser-risk payment options like COD or Cash on Delivery. This is a serious challenge since a huge chunk of potential customers are either unbanked or underbanked, or while others have disposable income, it’s still difficult for them to get access to credit cards. But not anymore with PayMaya as this totally gives customers access to a Visa card at ease.

Needless to say, PayMaya’s value proposition is its deep integration with Visa, allowing just anyone to shop online without credit card. But it’s not just about shopping online. The PayMaya App itself can be used to pay bills, transfer money, or shop in-app virtual goods like telco’s airtime load, call and text packages, and internet data packages.

The PayMaya app is available as free download from Apple App Store and Google Play.