This Digital transformation brought by the internet and online banking services has completely revolutionized online shopping and E-commerce industry. Gone are those days when we used to visit different on-ground shops and compare different prices since all of this can be done now with a few clicks sitting at home. Online shopping saves a lot of our time and all the credit goes to the banks who provide convenient methods of E-payments using our current Debit cards. Due to the secured internet banking facilities provided by the banks, the users are now quite comfortable in making online transactions. Moreover, the banks are upgrading online payment services to facilitate the existing Debit card holders in case they don’t own a Credit card. Following article is a complete guide to assist about the hassle-free procedures of online payments using the Debit cards.
Due to the recent security breach in Bank Islami and hacking of users’ information via data skimming, the banks have taken some security measures in order to ensure secure online remittances while facilitating their customers with online payment services via Debit cards. These security measures include One-time password (OTP) sent to the users to intimate regarding the online payment or the activation of online payment services via the bank’s helpline for a pre-defined duration to ensure security as well as transparency. The following list is about which Debit Cards can be used for online payments in Pakistan and more importantly, how.
HBL definitely tops the list of most convenient Debit cards that can be used for online shopping in Pakistan. They have state-of-the-art 3-D secure service that allow the users to shop online by authorizing the payments via SMS or email verification passwords. The users can avail the facility of SMS or e-mail alerts so that they are intimated before making any online payment. In order to buy online, after selecting the payment option to “Pay via HBL Debit card”, then the user will be prompted to enter the bank account number and the owner’s CNIC number. There is also a timer on the secured websites for the payment and checkout. Below screenshots are taken from the “Easytickets” app to buy movie tickets. Once the user inputs the information, he/she will receive an OTP via SMS and will be instructed to input for the final confirmation of payments before the timer expires. Otherwise, one has to repeat the process since the OTP is applicable only within the session window. All these steps are necessary for secured online payments.
For most of the online retailing shops, the payment methods have got an additional section dedicated for payments via HBL cards since they have got a different online payment method than rest of the banks.
Meezan Bank provides the facility of an already activated Debit Card for online payments so saving the users’ time to call and activate the card. However, it has got an OTP mechanism similar to the HBL Debit Card. Once the users do the online shopping with Meezan Bank Debit Card, they get a OTP for the verification of the payment and the online payment is complete.
The MCB debit card holders have to activate their Debit Cards for online payment by calling the helpline. This is another procedure implemented by various banks to keep a check on the online payments. The users can call the helpline to activate the Debit Card by providing the required information regarding the account. Then the user specifies a time interval during which the card will be used. The banks then activate the MCB Debit Card for a certain time period and the user has to make sure to use the card within the given time frame otherwise, the card has to be re-activated again. It’s a bit a lengthy procedure but it is for the security of the Debit card users.
Faysal Bank / Allied Bank
Both of the banks follow MCB’s mechanism for their online payments via cards and the users have to activate them via helpline before using them for online shopping.
Well, Bank Alfalah Debit Cards have got a bit complicated process of online payments since some of the cards come activated like their Platinum cards while rest of the cards have to be activated before doing any online payments. Since there are some additional Alfa orbit points linked with payments via different Debit Cards so one has to check with the helpline about the details of the Debit Card before doing any online shopping.
UBL has got a variety of Debit cards and just like Bank Alfalah, some of their Debit cards are already activated while some of them require activation before doing online transactions for shopping.
It is a well-established fact that standard chartered provide best banking services including the most user-friendly mobile banking facility. They have got one of the most banking network and it doesn’t require any pre-activation request for using the Debit Card before online shopping. Well, the best services definitely come with more charges and standard chartered bank has got additional charges for online remittances.
Prepaid Visa Debit Cards
Another term has been coined by the banks named as Prepaid Visa Debit Cards in order to facilitate the customers with online shopping. These Debit Cards are actually a combination of a mobile app account and a Debit Card linked with it. This is another convenient way to shop online since they account is accessible via mobile and the Debit Card gives additional benefits of money withdrawal. Following are some examples of Prepaid Visa Debit Cards:
- MCB Lite
- UBL Wiz Card
- Jazz Cash Visa Debit Card
All of these cards have an associated mobile account that is used to for the payments and transactions. All of the above cards except Jazz Cash have to be activated for online payments by calling the helpline. Once activated, the customers can easily shop online locally as well as internationally. These Prepaid Debit Cards have got an edge over the rest of the Debit Cards because of easy maintenance of the bank account on the mobile phone as well as international online payments.
The Debit Card holders have been reluctant in the past for using their Debit Cards for online payments because of the tedious procedure to use them online. However, the banks are trying their best to streamline the entire online payments process while keeping the transactions secured. It is a Digital Era where everything is done online so majority of the banks in Pakistan have implemented well-secured yet convenient procedures for online shopping via their Debit Cards.