Programmatic Lunch

Uber's Asian rival Grab now lets you pay for food through its app

Tyrone Stewart

GrabAlmost a year ago, Southeast Asian ride hailing company Grab took its first steps toward becoming a digital payments company when it introduced GrabPay credits. Now, it has become the payment service it set out to be.

Grab’s mobile wallet service, GrabPay, can now be used to pay for goods and services in certain shops. Currently, 25 restaurants and food stalls in Singapore are signed up to accept cashless payments through the service.  

The Uber rival says that it hopes to reach around 20,000 merchants in Singapore and businesses across Southeast Asia.

Transactions work via the Grab app. From here, users tap the ‘GrabPay’ button, and then scan the QR code at the store. After scanning the code, users enter the amount due and complete the payment via the navigation bar. Both the buyer and seller are notified upon completion of the transaction.

“This is an important part of the journey,” Hooi Ling Tan, co-founder of Grab, told TechCrunch. “We’ve been talking and executing on our plan but today is a significant milestone for making GrabPay truly a cash replacement.

“If I leave my wallet at home, I can still pay for breakfast, lunch and dinner. In time I’ll be able to buy goods like hardware or groceries using GrabPay.”

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