What is DuitNow and how to use it in Malaysia

Hannes Ausmees

DuitNow¹ launched first in Malaysia back in 2018, but as more banks, providers and users have signed up - and more services have been added - it’s getting more and more common. If you’ve never used DuitNow you’re probably wondering: what is DuitNow and how does it work?

This guide has you covered with all about how to use DuitNow, the different services on offer and a look at how to set up DuitNow with a few of our biggest banks.

Table of contents

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What is DuitNow?

DuitNow is a Malaysian money transfer service which allows real time payments between locally registered bank accounts.

It’s operated by PayNet², which is Malaysia’s national payments network, responsible for everything from ATM networks and FPX, to supporting bill payments, direct debits and cheque clearing. Bank Negara Malaysia is the biggest shareholder of PayNet, so you know it’s a well organised and fully regulated provider.

With DuitNow you can send an instant transfer to a friend or business, using just a mobile phone number, IC or business registration number. That means no need to carry cash and no need to look for bank account details when you need to make a payment. You can also pay merchants by scanning a simple QR, request money, and receive payments right to your bank account. More on the key DuitNow services available in Malaysia coming right up.

How to use DuitNow

Let’s move on to how DuitNow works. As we mentioned, there are several DuitNow services available:

  • DuitNow transfer
  • DuitNow QR
  • DuitNow request³
  • DuitNow cross-border⁴

We’ll look at DuitNow transfers, how to use a DuitNow QR code and how to receive money from DuitNow in more detail in a moment, as these are key services. Aside from these options, there’s also a cross-border service which is currently being rolled out.

At the time of writing the cross-border option is limited to allowing Malaysian merchants to take payments from Thai bank account holders using DuitNow - but if this service is successful, it’s likely more banks and more countries will be brought into the fold.

And if you’re wondering more generally - where can I use DuitNow? There’s good news. DuitNow is supported by an impressive range of providers, covering all the major banks in Malaysia, as well as Touch 'n Go wallet. GrabPay and ShopeePay are coming soon, too.

DuitNow transfer⁵

To make a DuitNow transfer all you’ll need to do is link your bank account to your mobile phone number, IC or other unique identifier. And best of all, the Duitnow transfer time is pretty much instant, so your money arrives almost as soon as you confirm the payment.

Most banks then have DuitNow embedded into their online and mobile banking systems, so making a payment is as simple as logging into your account and following a few steps. We’ll look at the processes with a few banks later - but this is the basic outline of what you’ll need to do:

  1. Log into online or mobile banking
  2. Find DuitNow under Funds Transfer or Send Money (depending on your bank)
  3. Enter your recipient’s ID - usually a phone number is easiest
  4. Add the payment amount
  5. Check everything over, confirm, and you’re done

DuitNow transfers are free to use for payments up to 5,000 MYR, and land instantly in the recipient’s account. If you’re sending more than 5,000 MYR there may be a small fee - but many banks waive this charge.

DuitNow transfer limits do apply. Individuals can transfer up to 50,000 MYR per transaction - although your own bank and account may have lower limits than this.

DuitNow QR⁶

When you’re paying a merchant you can also do so through the DuitNow QR. In this case, you’ll simply need to scan the merchant’s DuitNow QR to make a payment through your preferred bank account or e-wallet.

DuitNow QRs are compatible with lots of different banks and e-wallets so merchants don’t need to display multiple QRs to get paid. For you as the consumer it’s even easier:

  1. Open the banking app or e-wallet you want to pay with
  2. Scan the merchant’s DuitNow QR
  3. Check the details and confirm to pay
  4. You’ll get a confirmation the payment has gone through successfully

How to receive money from DuitNow

Before you can receive a payment through DuitNow you’ll need to register your account by adding your phone number, IC or other unique identifier to your preferred bank account. We’ll look at how to do that in more detail later.

Once your account is set up, you don’t actually need to take any action to get paid through DuitNow. Give the sender your phone number or IC information and your money will be automatically, and instantly, deposited into your account.


Sending money internationally? Wise is up to 3x cheaper than Malaysian banks

DuitNow is super convenient for payments within Malaysia. However, it’s not the solution if you want to send or receive money in a foreign currency. To cut the costs of foreign payments, and get your money moving faster, you need Wise.

Wise international money transfers use the real exchange rate with no markup and no hidden fees. There’s just a low, transparent charge per transaction - and you’ll instantly be able to see how much your recipient will get and when your money is likely to arrive.

If you travel a lot or shop internationally, you can save even more with the Wise multi-currency account and card. Open your account online to hold and exchange 50+ currencies, and spend all over the world with the real exchange rate. You can even get paid in MYR to your Wise account with DuitNow. Add funds yourself, or have someone else send you a DuitNow payment which you can then convert and spend or send on as you wish.

The true cost of sending MYR to USD


How to register DuitNow

Let’s take a look now at how to register DuitNow, and use the service at some of the most popular partnering banks.

DuitNow Maybank⁷

Let’s look first at how to register for DuitNow on the Maybank app:

  1. Open the Maybank app
  2. Select Me on the side menu
  3. Tap DuitNow, then Register
  4. Enter the details following the prompts, and choose the account you want to link
  5. Tap Done

Once you have registered your DuitNow account, you can make payments in just a few taps, too:

  1. Open the Maybank app
  2. Click Transfer, then Transfer via DuitNow
  3. Choose the account you want to pay from
  4. Tap New Transfer follow the prompts to add your recipient’s phone number or IC information
  5. Enter the amount you want to transfer amount and a payment reference
  6. Tap Continue
  7. Complete the verification step to complete the payment

DuitNow CIMB⁸

Use DuitNow easily with the CIMB Clicks app, or through the online banking service. Here’s how to register with the CIMB app:

  1. Open the CIMB Clicks app
  2. Tap App settings, then DuitNow ID
  3. Enter your phone number or IC information to link
  4. Choose the account you want to link to
  5. Check, confirm and you’re done

To make a payment you’ll need to:

  1. Open the CIMB Clicks app
  2. Tap the DuitNow logo
  3. Enter the payment amount and the recipient’s information
  4. Check and tap Approve

RHB DuitNow⁹

Here’s how to use RHS DuitNow in the RHB banking app. First you’ll need to register:

  1. Log into the DuitNow app
  2. Tap the menu button and go to My Settings
  3. Select DuitNow and follow the prompts to add your details
  4. Once your account is approved you can start sending money

And then to make a payment, all you have to do is:

  1. Log into the DuitNow app
  2. Go to the Action Menu and select Pay
  3. Tap Make New Payment and then Individual
  4. Enter the recipient’s mobile number and the payment details
  5. Check everything over and submit

Summary

DuitNow is a very easy way to send local payments to friends, family, businesses and even government organisations. Getting set up is easy, and it’s supported by pretty much all Malaysia’s large banks.

You can also use DuitNow to pay merchants and request payments - but you won’t really be able to use it to send and receive international transfers. For that you need Wise. Take a look at Wise for low cost international payments and spending - and see how much you can save.

Get a Wise account today!


Sources:

  1. Duitnow
  2. PayNet
  3. DuitNow request
  4. DuitNow cross border
  5. DuitNow transfer
  6. DuitNow QR
  7. DuitNow Maybank
  8. DuitNow CIMB
  9. RHB DuitNow

Sources checked on 23.08.2022


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This publication is provided for general information purposes and does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from Wise Payments Limited or its subsidiaries and its affiliates, and it is not intended as a substitute for obtaining advice from a financial advisor or any other professional.

We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether expressed or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.

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