PayLah vs PayNow vs Pay Anyone vs Google Pay – Comparison of the Top Peer-to-Peer Payment Services

In this day and age, funds transfers have never been more convenient!

Peer-to-peer payment (also known as P2P payment) services can be used from splitting a dinner tab to paying your bills. In Singapore, some of the top P2P payment services include PayLah, PayNow, Pay Anyone and Google Pay.

Typically, you can make a payment simply with a banking account or credit card through an online or mobile app. How convenient!

However, the trouble is that there are so many different P2P payments services out there. Sometimes, we don’t even know which to use!

What exactly are the differences between these P2P payment services? We know it can get overwhelming with so many options, which is why we are here to help!

If you want to find out the differences between PayLah, PayNow, Pay Anyone and Google Pay, keep reading to see how and when you should use each of these services!

1. PayLah

What is PayLah?

DBS PayLah is one of the top P2P payment services in Singapore. It is a mobile wallet where you can make funds transfers to your friends or merchants.

To transfer money using PayLah, you will need to use your password, touch or face ID to log in to the app.

Do note that there are limits in place. For DBS / POSB customers, your daily transfer limit is S$2,000. For customers of other banks, their limit is set at S$999. Apart from that, there is also a wallet limit, which caps the number of funds you can retain in your PayLah wallet at any given point. The wallet limit is the same as the transfer limit.

How to register?

Contrary to popular belief, you do not need to be a DBS / POSB account holder to use PayLah.

You can register by downloading the PayLah app and sign up via your digibank account or MyInfo. If you pick the former option, link your DBS / POSB bank account to your app (if you are an existing DBS / POSB customer).

Otherwise, allow PayLah to retrieve the necessary information from your MyInfo profile and you are good to go! However, do note that this applies only if you are a Singaporean or Permanent Resident.

Why you will love PayLah

Firstly, PayLah lets you do more than just pay. In fact, it provides endless new offers from an expanding list of partners such as buying tickets, booking shows, ordering meals and many more deals.

Secondly, PayLah offers a reward system where you can enjoy savings by earning points and redeeming them on payments you have made. This means that you can offset your purchases and bills instantly!

When to use?

For starters, one smart occasion where you should use PayLah is when you are making payments to integrated merchants. These include Golden Village, SISTIC and ChopeDeals. Why? Of course, it is to enjoy exclusive deals! This can be done by launching their page through the relevant icons within the app.

Furthermore, you should also use PayLah when you want to save the hassle of having to log into your internet banking account. All you need to do is link your Face ID to the app.

Finally, you should also use PayLah when you are dealing with smaller transactions that do not exceed your daily limits.

2. PayNow

What is PayNow?

PayNow is a free electronic funds transfer service that allows users to transfer funds immediately to a payee. Instead of requiring a bank account number, the transfer is done through the use of the payee’s registered mobile number or NRIC / FIN.

A payee simply requires the following to receive funds via PayNow:

  1. A Singapore bank account number with one of the participating banks, including DBS Bank / POSB, Citibank, HSBC, OCBC Bank and several others; and
  2. A registered mobile number or NRIC / FIN.

The maximum limit for PayNow transfers is the same as of your daily local transfer limit, which usually can be managed online. For DBS iBanking, you can transfer via PayNow up to a daily limit of S$1,000 (without the need of your iBanking token). For transfers above S$1,000, you will need to use your iBanking token to approve the change in limit.

How to register?

You can register your mobile number or NRIC / FIN for PayNow on the banking platforms of the various banks.

For example, here are the steps to register via POSB digibank:

  1. Select the DBS / POSB account that you want to link your PayNow with; and
  2. Set a PayNow Nickname for your registration. This way, people can identify you when receiving / sending funds from / to you.

Interestingly, registration is not required to transfer funds via PayNow. In fact, you can transfer money using either your bank’s internet banking facility or mobile banking service to a PayNow registered recipient.

However, you do need to register to receive funds via PayNow. After registration, you can receive payments by providing your NRIC or mobile number to the paying party.

Why you will love PayNow

Gone are the days where you have to go through a tedious process of adding someone as a payee through digibank. PayNow offers a fuss-free service that allows you to transfer money with just your recipient’s mobile number or NRIC / FIN number or a QR code. In addition, it does not matter which bank your recipient has as long as it is one of the nine participating banks in Singapore! In short, these major banks are DBS / POSB, HSBC, Bank of China, CitiBank, ICBC, Maybank, OCBC, Standard Chartered Bank and UOB.

Apart from that, PayNow has also launched PayNow Corporate to extend the service to corporates, businesses, government agencies and many more. Not many know of this but PayNow Corporate even supports salary crediting and insurance claims payouts!

When to use?

As you are generally free to set your own daily transfer limit, you should use PayNow when you are dealing with larger peer-to-peer transfers to participating banks or at merchants who accept PayNow.

3. Pay Anyone

What is Pay Anyone?

Pay Anyone allows OCBC customers to send money to literally anyone! In addition, you can make NETS QR purchases up to a daily limit of S$1,000. This means that you can pay for your meals, shopping, taxi rides at participating merchants and food centres.

How to register?

You can register for Pay Anyone by downloading the OCBC Pay Anyone app and activate the service with your OCBC online banking account, PIN and OTP sent to your registered mobile number.

Why you will love Pay Anyone

Firstly, OCBC Pay Anyone allows you to literally pay anyone through their mobile number or email address. No bank account number is required!

Secondly, you can request payment easily by generating a QR code. For example, with the new “bill splitting” option, you can send your friend their portion of the bill exactly how you want it. This makes splitting bills easy-peasy lemon squeezy!

When to use?

For starters, you can use it when you are making small purchases or funds transfers that are under S$1,000.

Furthermore, you can also use the Pay Anyone app to withdraw money, simply by scanning the QR code displayed on the ATM machine. This means that you only need your phone to withdraw cash!

Lastly, as mentioned above, you can use the “bill splitting” feature to ease the hassle of splitting bills with your friends.

4. Google Pay

What is Google Pay?

Google Pay is a quick and simple way to pay in millions of places wherever you are. You can do so in stores, apps, on the web and on Google.

How to register?

Firstly, you need to download the app on Google Play or the App Store. Alternatively, you can visit And we know what you are thinking. No, you do not need an Android phone to use Google Pay since the app is available on both iOS and Android.

Secondly, sign in to your Google account. We’re pretty sure everyone has one of those!

Thirdly, add a payment method. For example, you can add your debit or credit card and you can start paying in stores, apps, websites or for transit using your phone. Tadah! You do not need to add money to Google Pay in order to pay. It is exactly like paying with your card.

Why you will love Google Pay

Google Pay is touted to keep everything you need in one secure place. For example, your debit and credit cards, tickets and boarding passes, loyalty, gift cards and more.

In addition, Google Pay protects your payment info to help keep your account safe. Fun fact! When you pay in stores, Google Pay does not actually share your card number. This ensures that your information remains secure!

When to use?

Firstly, you can use Google Pay to pay for your transport. No more fishing your bag for your EZ-Link card or worse, forgetting to top it up and delaying your entire journey!

Secondly, you can pay at any merchants that accept contactless payments for your debit or credit card. Yes, you still enjoy the same card rewards, even when you are not physically using your card!


Quick summary

 PayLahPayNowPay AnyoneGoogle Pay
Who can register?Singaporeans or Permanent ResidentsDBS / POSB, HSBC, Bank of China, CitiBank, ICBC, Maybank, OCBC, Standard Chartered Bank and UOB customersOCBC customersAnyone with a Google Account
Required information to make payment Mobile number or QR codeMobile number, NRIC or QR codeMobile number, email address or QR code Mobile number or QR code (for P2P payments)
Supports PayNow?YesYesYesYes
RecipientsPeers and participating merchantsPeers and participating merchantsPeers and participating merchantsPeers (according to PayNow) and any merchant that accepts contactless payments for your debit / credit cards

Cash payments are almost a thing of the past.

Now, there are so many other P2P payment services out there for you to explore, making transactions much more convenient for each of us. Whether we like it or not, these systems have become an integral part of our lives. Thus, it is important to keep yourself up-to-date with trendy P2P payment services to not only make your life easier but to also spend your money wisely.

As can be seen, some apps allow you to chalk up points and rewards, which helps you to maximise savings. Other apps offer exclusive deals and promotions to help you make the most of every purchase as compared to cash payments.

If you like what you read, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Telegram to get the latest updates. Also, here are more money tips that you may find useful!

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