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Paying online has been one of the easiest and most convenient ways to shop. All you need to do is install an app, choose a biller, and pay right away. Spending virtually made it easier for customers and businesses to transact more straightforwardly, and it has never been this easy.
When you choose to pay online, you either get an e-Wallet account or a virtual payment card. Virtual payment cards are similar to the physical ones that we usually have. However, the difference is you don’t need to have a physical card to transact.
In this article, you will learn more about virtual payment cards, how it works, its benefits, and more. We also included the best virtual pay cards you can acquire in the Philippines. So without further ado, let’s get started.
What are Virtual Payment Cards?
Virtual payment cards are non-physical debit or credit cards created for online purchases You may acquire one from a bank or a financial application.
The main difference between virtual payment cards to physical ones is you don’t have to go to a bank to make an account. Instead, all you need to do is go to their website and apply for a virtual card.
This virtual card comes with a 16-digit number, a verification number, and an expiry date similar to your ordinary bank card.
Virtual payment cards are also issued by the same companies that offer physical cards. It can come as Visa, Mastercard, or American Express.
Just like your debit or credit card, virtual cards are accepted anywhere as long as they support the type of card you have.
The other difference you can see between virtual and physical cards is that owners are given more control.
With virtual payment cards, you can choose your currency depending on what you need. The same can’t be said for physical cards, as it only supports your country’s currency.
You can also set the spending limit on your own.
For example, there are bank accounts where a spending limit is established depending on the type of card issued to the client. With virtual pay cards, your spending limit is in your hands.
The best thing about virtual pay cards is it provides an easy and convenient way for businesses and customers to transact without the need for an actual physical card.
It gives individuals another way to pay for their purchases if they don’t have a credit/debit card or if cash payment is not an option.
How do virtual pay cards work?
Virtual pay cards work similarly to physical bank cards. You can pay your bills and purchase stuff with it. However, the difference is in the process of acquiring one.
If you wish to have a virtual payment card, you will need to log in to your online bank or any other bank you prefer. Next, you have to send an application for a virtual payment card.
Then, the app will generate a card number, expiration date, and security code connected to your existing account.
Once you have the virtual card details, you may log in on the app or their online banking website to use it. You can also generate as many random numbers as you like for use in your online purchases.
You can also set a spending limit per day or week on that card number.
Benefits of virtual pay cards:
Aside from having complete control over your spending limit and the convenience it provides, virtual payment cards come with other benefits. In this section, we will discuss the advantages of virtual payment cards:
1. Virtual payment cards are secure.
Unlike physical cards, cash, and check payments, virtual payment cards guarantee more security.
Why? It’s because you do not need to share your bank account number.
When you do transactions using virtual payment cards, you only need to generate a 16-digit card number and use it. This way, the information you provide for the transaction will never be tied to your bank account.
However, the generated code is for one-time use only, and it can only assign an amount to a specific virtual payment card.
Not only that, but virtual payment cards are locked down to a specific amount, time limit, and maximum spending limit.
It means that if someone tries to steal your virtual card number out of the time frame or without the amount of information, they cannot use it for a transaction.
Lastly, the generated number for the virtual payment card is not linked to any physical card. This makes it safer and more secure for clients to make transactions online.
Also, it has real-time protection, providing a crucial layer of protection necessary when dealing with financial transactions online.
Virtual payment cards can be issued to multiple people.
Business owners can benefit a lot from virtual payment cards. Aside from providing another way to accept payments, you can also issue them to your team members and employees.
With that, anyone in your company who uses the company’s bank account daily can use the virtual card. Instead of asking the accounting head for access to the physical card, they can simply issue a virtual payment card.
As a business owner, you are responsible for keeping an eye on your finances and expenses. With virtual payment cards, you can control a spending limit according to your team’s estimated budget.
You won’t have to worry about overspending since your team can easily check how much they have available to spend.
2. Financial transactions are easy to track and manage
Compared to physical cards and similar modes of payments, assigning virtual payment cards to your team, vendors, and suppliers is easier.
In addition, you can track each transaction as generated numbers are always unique. Keep in mind that all purchases and payments made with your virtual card will automatically appear on your card management system.
There’s tremendous potential here to cut down on the number of times your accounting manager spends hunting down expenditure invoices.
It’s simple to track and settle transactions since each payment is assigned to the specific team person who made the transaction.
3. Virtual payment cards are easy to set up.
Applying for a virtual pay card is an easy and straightforward process.
Enrollment is done online, everything you’ll be required to provide and submit can be completed on the vendor’s website.
4. Virtual payment cards improve financial reconciliation.
Due to the ease of which you can track and manage transactions, virtual payment cards make it easier for accounting staff to maintain your financial books.
No need to commit time, money, and energy to find out the details of certain transactions as all reports can easily be accessed online.
You can even assign virtual payment cards to a particular individual, a specific division, supplier, merchant, customer, or local expenditure number.
This feature helps in keeping all transactions transparent and easy to track.Virtual payment cards allow real-time authorization for transactions
Virtual payment cards provide you with the ability to approve or deny transaction requests in real time, eliminating purchasing bottlenecks in your company’s workflow.
And since urgent purchases/transactions can be authorized in real-time, your employees won’t be forced to make out-of-pocket expenses just to complete the transaction.
As a result, reimbursements (which can be a hassle to process for both company and employee) can be significantly reduced and even avoided completely.
Benefits of virtual payment cards to businesses and corporations:
As mentioned, firms and corporations can also benefit from virtual payment cards. Here are three reasons why businesses should consider using virtual pay cards:
It increases working capital.
Compared to B2B transactions done using physical checks, virtual cards allow for a more tactical approach. The conventional procedure of printing, packing, stamping, and mailing money to suppliers takes multiple days. Transactions with a virtual card can be made right away.
Quicker settlement entails receiving more payments on time.
The faster you pay your vendors’ purchase orders, the healthier your partnership will be. Some may even provide initial incentives, which may help you save cash by lowering transaction expenses.
Provides less manual labor.
Purchasing with virtual cards may help increase productivity as it frees up resources usually allocated for financial tasks that require manual labor.
This approach additionally aids in the reduction of human inaccuracy.
Top Virtual Pay Cards in the Philippines
In the Philippines, there are plenty of virtual payment cards you can choose from. Most of them are not issued by banks but by e-wallet companies.
This section will show you the top virtual pay cards in the Philippines that you can check out.
1. Gcash AMEX Virtual Pay
GCash American Express Virtual Pay is a reloadable digital wallet that lets you purchase online and checkout for memberships on sites like Amazon, Lazada, Netflix, Spotify, and more.
Generally, you may use your GCash Amex Virtual Pay card on any site or online retailer that takes American Express.
How to activate Gcash AMEX Pay?
Before you can access Gcash AMEX, you first need to have a Gcash account. You can easily open a Gcash account using a mobile number and a valid ID for verification. Once you have a verified Gcash account, you can activate Gcash AMEX Pay.
To activate your Gcash AMEX Pay, all you need to do is follow these steps:
- Open your Gcash app and log in using your MPIN.
- Once you’re on the home screen, click on “Show More.”
- Scroll down and click on “Lifestyle and Shopping” and click on Pay Online.
- Next, click on Pay with American Express Virtual Pay. Once you’re in, click on Register to sign up for AMEX Pay.
- Your application for Gcash AMEX Pay will be processed immediately. You will receive a text message to confirm your Gcash AMEX Card has been activated.
- Once you have your Gcash AMEX Card activated, you can click on My Linked Accounts. Then, click on American Express Virtual Pay.
- From there, you can now see your virtual card number, expiry date, and CVV. You will also see your US address and phone number.
In seven steps, you can easily activate your Gcash AMEX Pay in no time. Online shopping and other cashless transactions abroad will always be safe and secure too.
If you wish to change your CVV, you may do so anytime by clicking “Get New Code.” You will receive the code via SMS right away.
How to use Gcash AMEX Pay Card?
The best thing about Gcash AMEX Pay Card is you can pay for different subscriptions online. Such subscriptions include Apple, Google Play, Grab, PayPal, Lazada, Shopee, Zalora, Netflix, Amazon, and more.
For you to use Gcash AMEX, all you need to do is enter your 15-digit card number, the CVV code, and expiry date. Then, the amount you made for the transaction will automatically deduct from your Gcash wallet. With that, before making any transactions online, make sure you have enough funds on your account.
Gcash AMEX Card vs. Gcash Mastercard
The difference between the Gcash Mastercard and Gcash AMEX Cardis that the Gcash Mastercard is an actual physical debit card, while the Gcash AMEX card, is a virtual pay card that can only be used online.
Another thing is you can own multiple Gcash Mastercards to your account. Meanwhile, you can only have one Gcash AMEX card per account.
Also, Gcash Mastercards have fixed CVV codes, while you can generate or change your CVV code for AMEX cards.
What makes the Gcash AMEX Card different from other virtual cards?
The GCash AMEX Pay card, unlike other digital wallets and debit cards authorized in the Philippines, has a postal address in the USA.
It implies you may use the account to buy online and make purchases on Amazon and other American websites. If you wish to purchase at Amazon and other US-based platforms, the GCash AMEX card is advantageous.
Merchants of Gcash AMEX Pay Card
- Google Play
2. Grab Pay Card
GrabPay is a digital payment wallet integrated into the Grab application that allows you to pay for Grab operations without leaving the app.
They have introduced new tools to make it a more comprehensive digital wallet. The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) has granted GrabPay a registration.
What can you do with Grab Pay?
Initially, GrabPay was only made for Grab users to pay for its offered services. Such services include booking a ride, food delivery, and goods delivery.
This mobile wallet allows you to pay for these services easily together with their discount offers and promos.
Now, you can also use GrabPay to pay for any purchases, as long as it’s a merchant of Grab. You may also pay your bills using the app, as they have a long list of billers you can choose from.
Buying prepaid load is also available on Grab, and you can use GrabPay to pay for it.
Lastly, GrabPay allows its users to gain Grab Rewards. These points are acquired whenever you book rides and paying them using GrabPay.
So with that, you should always use GrabPay to pay for Grab services to earn more rewards and points.
Before you get verified and use GrabPay for purchases, you will need to register on the Grab app first. Then, install the app on your smartphone and activate your GrabPay wallet. This will not take more than five minutes to do.
To apply for GrabPay, you will need to have at least one (1) government-issued valid ID. Accepted valid IDs are as follows:
Once you have these submitted, Grab will then activate your GrabPay Wallet into a basic one. In the Basic Wallet, you will earn more reward points for discounts, buy mobile loads, and save money on rides and food with subscription plans.
You may also upgrade your Basic Wallet to GrabPay’s Premium Wallet. In the Premium Wallet, you can cash in up to 1.2 million pesos per year, cash out your GrabPay balance, and send, receive money from abroad.
How can I access my GrabPay Card?
When you already have your GrabPay Wallet upgraded to Premium, you now have access to your GrabPay Card.
Keep in mind that you will need to have a Premium Wallet first before getting a GrabPay Card. This will also serve as your debit card for additional online payments.
To access your GrabPay Card, here’s what you need to do:
- Go to your dashboard on the Grab App and select the Payment icon.
- Click on Settings which is located at the upper right corner of the screen.
- Click on GrabPay Card and access it by typing in your card number and CVV.
If you wish to secure your GrabPay Card, you may also do so on the app. All you need to do is follow these steps:
- Click the Account icon on the lower right corner of the screen once you are in the Grab App.
- Click on Settings and select Set Up a Pin
- Make your pin and confirm it.
- Your PIN is now active and ready for use.
How can I cash into my GrabPay Card?
Similar to other e-wallets, you may cash in your GrabPay Card in several ways. For example, you can cash in with your credit and debit card, online banking, partner outlets, or have a Grab Driver do it for you.
When cashing in using a debit or credit card, all you need to do is link your card to your GrabPay Card. Then, enter the amount you wish to put in your GrabPay Card. It should be at least 200 PHP.
You may also choose to auto-cash in your GrabPay Card. Set an amount you wish to cash in automatically to your GrabPay wallet. You may select your debit or credit card for this option as well.
If you wish to cash in via online banking, choose the Online Banking and ATM option. Next, select your bank and provide your email address.
Your payment reference code will then arrive, and you need to use it to cash in from your online banking app.
Grab also has partner outlets where users can cash in their GrabPay Card. The most visited partner outlet is 7-Eleven. From their kiosk, you can select to cash in GrabPay.
Then, all you need to do is enter your GrabPay details, the amount you wish to cash in, and pay at the counter.
Keep in mind that all cash-in options will automatically reflect in your GrabPay Card in a few minutes. Therefore, cashing in is quicker and more convenient with GrabPay.
How to pay using GrabPay?
If you are paying for Grab services such as rides, food delivery, grocery delivery, and express services, all you need to do is access the app.
From there, you can choose your service and select GrabPay as a form of payment method. GrabPay payments will automatically process once the transaction is complete.
GrabPay does not only cater to Grab services payment, but you can also pay for online purchases with it.
Just make sure that the online store you are purchasing from offers GrabPay as a payment option. From there, you will receive a six-digit code to complete your payment transaction.
If you are shopping in a physical store, you may also use GrabPay. As long as they offer GrabPay as a payment option, you can pay through the app.
Ask the store if they have a QR code that you can scan for payment.
You may also pay by generating your QR code on your Grab App. All you need to do is show your QR code to the cashier, and they will do the scanning.
All transactions via GrabPay QR Scan will automatically reflect on your account.
- SM Cinema
- Razer Gold
- ABS-CBN Store
- Coda Shop
- WalterMart Delivery
3. BDO Virtual Card
Banco de Oro (BDO) is one of the most prestigious banks in the Philippines. Aside from their wide selection of accounts, (debit, savings, etc.,) the company also offers the BDO Virtual Card to their clients, which is an excellent card for online shopping.
How to Apply for a BDO Virtual Card?
Applying for a BDO Virtual Card is more straightforward than applying for a debit or credit account in BDO.
You don’t have to go to a BDO branch to apply for a BDO Virtual Card. All you need to do is download their mobile banking app.
Here are the following steps to do when applying for a BDO Virtual Card:
- When applying for a BDO Virtual Card, you first need to have an active BDO Mastercard or Visa Credit Card. Eligible clients for the BDO Virtual Card application should have either any (Classic, Gold, Titanium, or Platinum) BDO Mastercard and Visa (Classic, Gold, & Platinum) credit cards.
- Once you have at least one of these BDO cards, you may proceed to apply for BDO Virtual Card.
- To start the application, log on to your BDO Credit Card account. You should be enrolled in the BDO Credit Card Online Facility to access it. If you’re not yet registered, visit BDO’s site or contact their customer service hotline.
- When you log on to your page, tap on Customer Service.
- Once you’re on the Customer Service Page, select a card you want to apply for. For this instance, you need to click on BDO Virtual Card.
- Tap on Select a Request from the drop-down button.
- From there, tap on “Apply for a BDO Virtual Card.”
What can you do with a BDO Virtual Card?
Aside from seamless and convenient online shopping, you can do lots more things with BDO Virtual Pay Card. You can use it for almost any online use, such as purchases and payment transactions.
It is also easier and more secure to use because it can protect your account information from the public.
Each card number made by BDO Virtual Card is unique. It also comes with different numbers and CVV codes that are far from your primary BDO card.
Moreover, you have more control with a BDO Virtual Card compared to your BDO Mastercard or Visa card. For example, you can set a credit limit for your spending.
The credit limit is adjustable, and you can customize it per week or month. Make sure to contact BDO’s Customer Support to request a limit adjustment.
Tracking your purchases will also be more transparent with BDO Virtual Card. All transactions will reflect on your account in real-time.
You may also earn Peso Rewards whenever you use your BDO Virtual Card for your online transactions.
BDO Virtual Card Reminders
- When applying for BDO Virtual Card, you will need an active BDO Mastercard or Visa Card.
- Keep in mind that your BDO Virtual Card limit is also linked to your regular credit limit. It means that when you make a purchase using your BDO Virtual Card, your regular credit limit will also reduce.
- All BDO Virtual Card transactions will reflect your BDO Mastercard or Visa Card in your Statement of Account. It also shared the same Statement and Payment Due Date.
- Always keep your mobile number updated on your BDO records. You may also require one-time passwords (OTPs) whenever you make a purchase transaction.
4. ING Virtual Card
ING Philippines has been in the Philippines for three decades. They established the Philippines’ first digital and online banking option in 2018, allowing clients to create a bank account from the comfort of their mobile.
Clients can accomplish anything on their smartphones, from registration to financial transactions.
How does the ING Virtual Card work?
ING Philippines introduced and launched its newest bank account called ING Pay. This is a virtual bank account that allows users to make payments in just one click. It also focuses on secured payments anytime and anywhere.
Before you acquire an ING Virtual Card, you must have an ING Pay account first. The virtual card is connected to your ING Pay account, so you must have ING Pay before applying for the virtual card.
Just like any other virtual card, ING Virtual Card works well for online purchases and transactions. You can use your ING Virtual Card to pay at any online store. But you need to make sure that they accept Visa cards.
With the ING Virtual Card, you can make online payments and transactions of up to 50,000 PHP per day. Moreover, whenever you want to secure your virtual card, you can also freeze your card whenever you want.
ING Pay, unlike alternative digital banks and e-wallets, does not impose any processing fees.
Therefore, there are no transaction costs for bills payment. In addition, there are no transaction costs while transferring funds in actual time.
How to apply for ING Virtual Card
To apply for ING Virtual Card, here are the steps to follow:
- Open your ING App.
- Make sure you have enough funds on your ING Pay account before using your Virtual Card.
- Click the Card Icon on the bottom part of the menu.
- Once you’re on the account’s dashboard, click on the Arrowhead at the bottom part of the card icon.
- Use your ING Virtual Card’s details and start making your online payments.
5. PayMaya Virtual Card
Like Gcash, PayMaya is among the most used e-wallet in the Philippines. With PayMaya, you can pay bills, make online purchases, and cash in anywhere.
PayMaya also has their PayMaya Virtual Card, which is a fantastic tool to use for online shopping.
How does PayMaya Virtual Card work?
Like other virtual cards, PayMaya Virtual Card lets shop online and pay without using a physical card.
Instead, the virtual card is built-in in the app, and you will get a different card number and CVV for every transaction. This feature is also more secure than using physical cards for transactions.
You may also generate a QR code from your PayMaya app and let physical stores scan your code for payment.
If the store you are purchasing offers PayMaya as a payment method, you can also ask for their merchant QR code and scan it from your app.
All transactions via the PayMaya QR code will automatically be processed in real-time.
How can I activate my PayMaya Virtual Card?
Aside from the physical ATM card, you can get it from PayMaya. You can also apply for their Virtual Card. To do so, here’s what you need to do:
- Download the PayMaya app on your smartphone.
- Once you have the app, tap on Register and make an account. You will need to input your name, mobile number and come up with a strong password.
- Enter your email address for a more secure account.
- Tap on Continue.
- Wait for an SMS verification code on your phone. Once you have it, type it in your PayMaya app.
- Once you have your PayMaya account set up, you need to upgrade your account to use PayMaya Virtual Card.
- Tap on Online Payment Card.
- Next, indicate your birthday, work, and home address, and hit Next.
- Cash in at least 100 PHP and tap on View Card. You will now see your virtual card from the PayMaya app. You can also start using it for online purchases.
Keep in mind that you can only get a PayMaya Virtual Card if you have a regular PayMaya account.
All you need to do is upgrade your basic PayMaya account for you to get the virtual card.
How can I put funds on my PayMaya Virtual Card?
Just like putting funds on your regular PayMaya account, you may cash-in in any PayMaya partner outlets. You may also transfer funds from your physical PayMaya card to your virtual card whenever you want.
6. BPI Virtual Card
Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) is one of the top banks in the Philippines, trusted by many Filipinos. This is because they have some of the best credit and debit card offers and savings accounts for young adults, adults, and businesses.
BPI also offers a BPI Virtual Card that can be used for online and cashless transactions.
What are the features of the BPI Virtual Prepaid Card?
Like other virtual cards, BPI Virtual Cards make it easier for people to pay for their online purchases.
Among the best features that BPI Virtual Card has to offer is hassle-free card application. When you have a savings account with BPI, you can get a free virtual card along with it. This allows you easy access to your card details within the BPI App.
You can see your virtual card details when you log into your BPI Mobile App. However, with that, you will need to download the app first.
Your BPI Virtual Card can be used anytime and anywhere. As long as the store you are purchasing accepts Mastercard payments, you can use it for the transaction.
You can also cash into your virtual card up to 100,000 PHP through your online bank app or partner channels.
The best thing about BPI Virtual Card is it has no maintaining balance and loading fees. You can cash in as often as you like, and you don’t have to worry if you end up with a zero balance.
Lastly, you can generate a one-time pin (OTP) with your virtual card for added security.
How can I apply for a BPI Virtual Card?
Before applying for a BPI Virtual Card, you first need to have a #SaveUp account with BPI Online. The virtual card will come free once you register for that account.
If you are already registered to #SaveUp, you can now follow the steps below:
- Open your BPI Mobile App.
- Click on Open a New Account. Then, go through the options and click on Create a Bank Account.
- Follow the steps provided by the app. Fill out all necessary details.
- Click on “I’d like to get the BPI ePay Mastercard.”
- Once you’ve received a confirmation email from BPI, your BPI Virtual Card is now ready to use. You may check all the virtual card transactions and balances on the mobile app.
How can I put funds on my BPI Virtual Card?
Here’s how you can cash-in your BPI Virtual Card via BPI Online:
- Open your BPI Online.
- Click on Transfer Money and then choose Prepaid Load Card.
- Input the amount you wish to transfer.
- Tap on Load to 3rd party prepaid card.
- Type in your 16-digit BPI Virtual Card number. Once done, click on Next.
- Confirm the transaction details.
- Once done, a 6-digit code will be sent to you on your account’s registered mobile number.
- Enter the 6-digit code and tap Submit.
- After that, you will have to wait for your confirmation receipt via email.
- When you already have the email, the transaction will automatically credit the amount to your BPI Virtual Card.
Cash-in via BPI Mobile App:
- Log in to your BPI Mobile App to start.
- Click on the Side Menu Icon located at the upper left corner of the screen.
- Click on Transfer and choose Prepaid Load Card.
- Fill in the blanks with your details and click on Next.
- A One-Time Pin (OTP) will be generated. Click on Yes, Send Me The Code to confirm.
- Once you have the OTP, enter it on the app and click Submit.
- The amount you transferred will automatically reflect on your BPI Virtual Card balance.
How can I use my BPI Virtual Card?
You may use your BPI Virtual Card locally and abroad. As long as the store you make a transaction with accepts Mastercard payments; you can use the Virtual Card.
To use your BPI Virtual Card, you may pay online or link it to your PayPal account. Here’s how to do it:
Similar to how you use your debit or credit card for online purchases, all you need to do is:
- Select Mastercard Credit Card as your mode of payment.
- Input your virtual card details, such as the 16-digit card number, CVV, and card expiry date.
- Confirm the transaction.
You may also link your BPI Virtual Card to your PayPal account. However, keep in mind that charges may apply. When you connect your BPI Virtual Card to PayPal, you will need to have at least 150 PHP on your virtual card.
PayPal charges often have fees up to 1 USD when you link your card to your PayPal account. In addition, they will also deduct a 100 PHP fee when you verify it. However, once your card is verified, PayPal will refund the 100 PHP charge that they removed.
Here’s how you can link your BPI Virtual Card to PayPal:
- Log in to your PayPal account.
- Tap on Profile.
- Click on Add/Edit Credit Card.
- Click on Mastercard as the card type.
- Input your BPI Virtual Card details.
- Add the card to your PayPal account.
- Your BPI Virtual Card will now appear on your PayPal list of cards. You may confirm your card with PayPal by clicking Confirm My Card.
- Once you click on that, a 4-digit verification code will be sent to your BPI Virtual Card statement. You can view this code on your BPI app under transaction history.
To sum it all up, virtual cards are a big help for both individuals and businesses..
You won’t have to use or bring a physical card all the time since you can easily make purchases with a virtual card.
And if you are considering getting one, we hope our list above can help in making your decision.