Sending Money to The Philippines? Consider an E-Wallet

By March 11, 2023 April 12th, 2023 uLink Blog
uLink Sending Money to The Philippines scaled

The digital revolution has forever changed the world.

While the transformation can be seen in many countries, few nations have evolved faster than the Philippines.

Just a few years ago, in the Philippines cash was king, and legacy payments methods were preferred.

Then the pandemic hit, and usage exploded.

E-wallets are more than a temporary fad: they’re the future of personal finance. As we’ll discuss below, they’re fast, reliable, and highly secure.

Read on to learn why e-wallets are so popular, and which are the best in the Philippines.

First Things First: What Is an E-Wallet?

Like a physical wallet, an e-wallet stores your most essential financial information.

Instead of using a leather billfold or purse, however, an e-wallet puts everything right on your mobile device. That’s why e-wallets are often referred to as “mobile-payment wallets” or “digital wallets,” though they all mean the same thing.

With the basics being your credit card, debit card, and banking data, your e-wallet can also store digital coupons, gift cards, hotel reservations, plane tickets, and much more.

In other words, an e-wallet turns your smartphone into a fully fledged financial tool.

That’s why e-wallets are heralded as the “digital life hack” of the 21st century.

The Benefits of E-Wallets 

When it comes to personal finance, e-wallets let you do almost everything.

You can use them to store funds, complete transactions, and invest in assets. You can also use an e-wallet for short-term needs like ordering food, booking a ride-share, or tracking expenses—all in a matter of seconds.

Thanks to their versatility, e-wallets have served “underbanked” users in ways traditional banks have often struggled.

In fact, e-wallets have helped make the banking world more accessible. Thanks to the digital revolution, over 56% of Filipino adults now have bank accounts—up from just 29% in 2019.

E-wallets also make it easier than ever to transfer funds around the world.

For example, let’s say you want to send money almost instantly to a friend that uses a GCash in the Philippines. All you have to do is log in to your uLink account, then:

  1. Add your beneficiary
  2. Select the currency you’d like to send, PHP or USD
  3. Select Delivery Method > Wallet
  4. Choose GCash or choose between maya, StarPay or
  5. Enter the amount
  6. Select a payment method
  7. Review your order and confirm

E-wallets are fast and affordable, and they’re also more secure than other payment methods. Plus, with uLink, you can send money to wallets in the Philippines with no fee. Simply pay using a bank account and get a $0 fee on your transfers to major wallets.

By leveraging advanced processes known as tokenization, e-wallets help protect your information from potential hackers and fraud.

The Top 3 E-Wallets in the Philippines

From 2017 to mid-2020, e-wallet usage nearly tripled in the Philippines. By 2025, over 75 million Filipinos will be using e-wallets to make payments, tip delivery drivers, and receive remittances from overseas.

While countless e-wallets compete for your attention, it’s important to choose providers with the best technology and reputation.

Though Google Pay and Apple Pay are among the best-known digital wallets in the U.S., they are not yet available in the Philippines.

Instead, these three e-wallets rank among the most popular options in the region—and they’re all supported by uLink.

1. GCash

We mentioned GCash earlier for a good reason: it’s immensely popular in the Philippines.

In fact, GCash has over 71 million registered usersover 90% of the Philippine adult population. To put that in perspective, there are more Filipinos using GCash than there are people living in the United Kingdom!

While e-wallets aren’t a popularity contest, the rise of GCash is undeniably well-deserved.

First launched in 2004 as an SMS-based domestic remittance service, GCash has been a household name in the Philippines for many years.

After affirming its reputation as the favorite Filipino e-wallet, GCash has since branched out to offer financial products beyond payments, including e-commerce tools, savings, loans, insurance, and even investment options.

The platform also has a host of lifestyle services, from booking movie tickets to shopping online.

If you’re sending money to the Philippines, GCash is a great way to go—and it works seamlessly with uLink.

2. Maya 

Maya is making moves.

With over 50 million registered users, Maya (formerly known as PayMaya) is rapidly catching up to industry leader GCash.

More than an e-wallet, Maya is an all-in-one money app that unlocks access to savings accounts, credit/debit cards, and even cryptocurrency exchanges.

But Maya isn’t stopping there.

Last year, Maya Bank entered the market and won over a million customers in just a few months. That makes Maya the fastest-growing digital bank in the Philippines.

According to Shailesh Baidwan, PayMaya Group President and Maya Bank co-founder, “Filipinos deserve reliable and seamless digital banking experiences, and we are delivering this with urgency and speed.”

3. Starpay

Last but not least, Starpay provides another convenient way for loved ones to receive money.

Backed by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), Starpay is quickly growing in popularity.

With approximately 8 million active users, the e-wallet services platform is steadily expanding its reach by providing niche financial services, like bill payment and Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL).

At uLink, we proudly provide money transfers to Starpay as well.

Ready to get started? Click here to get started.

Moving Forward

With uLink, you can send money to the Philippines to over 20,500 locations.

You can transfer funds to all bank accounts, or if your loved ones prefer to use an e-wallet, we have that too.

Whether you choose GCash, Maya, Starpay, or, uLink has you covered. In fact, when you send money to e-wallets, you’ll automatically get $0 fees AND a preferred exchange rate. All you need to do is pay using a bank account. That’s it!

Plus, let’s not forget that you also get gift cards worth $30 to major retailers nationwide across the United States on your first 5 transfers of $100 or more.

We’re truly committed to helping you send as much of your love back home as possible. All while, giving you access to great savings and perks!

Miles from home—just moments away with uLink.

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