Digital Banking In Pakistan (A Complete Guide)

digital banking in pakistan

If you’re wondering about the digital future of banking in Pakistan, this is the article for you! Once we’ve outlined the advantages digital banks can offer Pakistanis, we’ll guide you through all of the digital banking options available in Pakistan. 

TAG is the first digital bank to open in Pakistan. TAG is currently allowing early access to their digital banking services to users, which includes fund transfers, bill payments, and financial management tools. For non-resident Pakistanis, a Roshan Digital Account can be digitally opened. 

The Digital Future Of Banking In Pakistan 

As of 2020, Pakistan has a population of 220.9 million people. However, did you know that only an estimated 50.5 million bank accounts were open in Pakistan as recently as 2018? However, as the landscape of digital banking grows in Pakistan, this is slowly changing. 

A shift away from traditional banking, digital banks are becoming increasingly popular across the globe. Many countries are now embracing digital banking and its benefits – including Pakistan. However, digital banking should not be confused with online banking. There’s an important distinction between these two types of banking. 

Online banking is generally linked to an account at a traditional bank. With this type of account, you’d need to open the account in person and activate online banking features. However, these features are often limited, resulting in customers needing to visit their bank in-person to complete certain transactions. 

In Pakistan, there are plenty of traditional banks that offer online services. These include the National Bank of Pakistan, Meezan Bank, Habib Bank, and Standard Charter. Now, you might be wondering how these banks differ from digital banks. Let us explain! 

With digital banks, customers are able to handle their finances online from the comfort of their home – or wherever they are. Of course, this is comparable to online banking features. Among the major differences is the process of opening a digital bank account. 

Digital bank accounts are created online without needing to visit a physical bank branch. Upon registering and verifying their digital bank accounts, users may begin using their new banking features. 

In 2021, the first digital bank was launched in Pakistan. In a country where only an estimated 30% of adults have bank accounts, digital banking might be the shift needed to revolutionize the country’s banking landscape. After all, there are many advantages this type of account can offer the residents of Pakistan!

The Advantages Of Digital Banking In Pakistan 

Digital banking is revolutionizing the way people across the world manage their finances. As these modern banks are introduced in Pakistan, it’s important for residents to be aware of the benefits offered by these digital banks. In this section, we’ll go into more depth about the benefits of these digital bank accounts! 

#1: Digital Bank Accounts Are At Your Fingertips   

Digital banking has set a new standard for banking convenience, surpassing even online banking services offered by traditional banks. Registering a new bank account has never been easier! Digital bank accounts can be set up remotely and are paper-free. Ultimately, the registration process for a digital bank account will vary between countries. 

However, these processes are either completed on a computer or through the digital bank’s dedicated mobile application. Generally, the registration process will only take a few minutes, and users will have full access to their digital accounts within a day. Digital banks will even provide users with digital bank cards, usually at no extra cost! 

#2: All The Banking Features You Need In One Place

All digital banks are linked to a dedicated website or mobile application. When these are downloaded by users, they’ll be able to access their digital bank account and features from this online platform or application. With a digital account, all the features you need are in one place. 

Typically, the features offered by digital banks include fund transfers, bill payments, access to transaction statements, and more. These features will vary between digital bank accounts. It’s important to consider the different features offered when choosing a digital bank account that’s right for your banking needs. 

#3: It’s Accessible To More People 

As mentioned earlier, only an estimated 30% of adults in Pakistan have access to a bank account. Digital banking, however, should increase this statistic. That’s because digital banks are more accessible to people, regardless of where you live. Ultimately, all that’s needed is access to the internet and a mobile device. 

The accessibility and reach offered by digital banking means people in rural areas do not have to travel far distances in order to create a bank account. Instead, they can simply create a digital account from wherever they happen to be. As digital banking is integrated into Pakistan’s banking sector, banking will become more accessible to the residents of Pakistan. 

#4: Digital Banks Gives People Control Over Their Finances  

Due to the digital nature of these banks, your banking service technically becomes self-service. This means that you have more control over your finances. Technology is allowing people to take control of their finances with these digital bank accounts. 

In terms of fees, digital banks are more upfront. With traditional banks, there are often many hidden fees, such as transaction costs. When signing up for a digital bank account, fees are clearly discussed. With some digital banks, there will be different account options to suit every customer’s needs. 

#5: There Are Discount And Rewards Programs 

Another fantastic advantage of digital banks is the rewards and discounts they offer. Often these banks partner with certain vendors and retailers. Digital bank account holders will then be subject to certain discounts when they use either their digital or physical bank card linked to their digital account. 

Many digital banks also have rewards programs, whereby people can collect reward points as they go about their banking and spend money. In time, these points can be used to unlock certain rewards. While these programs will vary between digital banks, it’s certainly a great benefit! 

#6: Digital Banks Are Highly Secure 

When it comes to banking, security is always an important consideration. Luckily, security remains a high priority for all banks – even the digital ones! Typically the mobile applications linked to digital bank accounts will offer various security options. 

Many of these banking applications allow users to enable two-factor authentication. By doing this, you can add an additional layer of security to your bank account. Your mobile device’s biometric features, such as fingerprint readers or Face ID, can be used as part of this authentication. 

TAG: Pakistan’s First Digital Bank 

tagme bank

The first of its kind in Pakistan, TAG is determined to change the way people in Pakistan bank. Designed to be transparent, this banking app will truly put you in control of your finances. Registration is completely digital and only takes a few moments on TAG’s official website. 

With many digital banks, there is usually a stipulated minimum balance. However, for TAG users, there is no minimum balance. With no monthly fees, the service is free to use for those located in Pakistan. Let’s explore the features you’ll unlock by creating an account with this digital bank. 

Once you’ve registered with TAG, you’ll have access to the TAG Visa Debit Card. With this, users can make secure payments whenever they need to. Prospective TAG users will be delighted to find out this card is accepted by retail and online merchants across the globe. Moreover, this card can be used at any ATM in Pakistan! 

Registered TAG users will be provided with a personal IBAN account number. This will allow users to digitally receive funds from people around the globe. Furthermore, with TAG’s transfer features, TAG users will be able to transfer funds to any bank or virtual wallet in Pakistan. When funds are transferred between two TAG users, transfers are instant and free of charge. 

When you need to pay your utility bill, you’ll be able to do it right from TAG’s robust digital platform. Account holders will also be able to top up their mobile balance and pay internet device bills as needed. With TAG’s app, people in Pakistan will be able to complete all of their banking on their electronic devices wherever they are. 

With digital banks, security is another important consideration. Prospective customers will be glad to know that TAG is considered an Electronic Money Institution and is therefore regulated by The State Bank of Pakistan. To ensure the highest level of security for users, TAG utilizes features such as 128-bit AES encryption, access control, and push notifications regarding transactions. 

Currently, TAG is allowing users to register for early access to this digital bank. To do this, users can sign up on their official website. Once registrations open fully, users will be able to download the dedicated TAG app from Google Play and the Apple App Store. 

Roshan Digital Accounts For Non-Resident Pakistanis 

While TAG is the first digital bank in Pakistan, there are other digital account options available. These digital accounts are known as Roshan Digital Accounts and are aimed at non-resident Pakistanis. This initiative was started by the State Bank of Pakistan to offer digital onboarding and banking facilities to non-resident Pakistanis. 

Of course, non-residents are those Pakistanis who live abroad. According to the tax laws in Pakistan, an individual is considered a non-resident when they have not been present in Pakistan for at least 183 consecutive days. Thanks to the Roshan Digital Account initiative, Pakistanis living abroad will be able to create and manage their bank accounts digitally. 

Although onboarding is done digitally for these accounts, and users will have access to banking features, these users are still joining traditional banks. Unlike TAG, which is Pakistan’s first digital bank, these Roshan Digital Accounts are digital account options from established banks in Pakistan for non-residents. 

Meezan Bank Roshan Digital Account 

Meezan Bank is Pakistan’s oldest and largest Islamic bank. For Pakistani non-residents across the world, Meezan Bank now offers a Roshan Digital Account option. From their official website, non-resident Pakistanis will be able to digitally create their bank account from anywhere in the world. Within 48 hours, account holders will be able to begin using their accounts.  

Prospective users will have the option of creating a digital current or savings account. This can be done in PKR or foreign currencies such as dollars, euros, and pounds. Users can also get a debit card or checkbook linked to their digital account. From paying utility bills to making local fund transfers in Pakistan, Meezan’s digital account has it all! 

United Bank Limited Roshan Digital Account 

united bank limited

United Bank Limited in Pakistan offers another Roshan Digital Account for non-resident Pakistanis. When opening this account, users will be able to choose between an Islamic or Conventional account, as well as between current and savings account options. There are also different account currency options. 

Overall, account verification will take up to 48 hours. Upon successful registration, account holders will be able to transfer funds, pay bills, invest in stocks, and even make equity investments. UBL offers great digital account options for non-resident Pakistanis! 

Habib Bank Limited Roshan Digital Account 

hbl bank

Founded in 1940, Habib Bank Limited (HBL) is well-established in Pakistan. As technology has evolved, HBL has continually provided users with new features. While remaining a traditional bank, HBL has expanded the digital services it offers to account holders. This includes the Roshan Digital Account, which can be remotely opened by Overseas Pakistanis. 

Users of this account will have access to a debit card and checkbook linked to their digital HBL account. Their accounts are also available in PKR, as well as various foreign currencies. Account-holders will be able to manage their finances, invest in stocks, make real estate investments, and more with this digital account from HBL. 

Standard Chartered Pakistan Roshan Digital Account 

standard chartered

Standard Chartered Bank in Pakistan now allows non-resident Pakistanis to open a Roshan Digital Account wherever they’re located abroad. Not only is no initial deposit required to open this digital account, but there’s no minimum average balance requirement at all. Both current and savings account options are available in numerous currency options. 

Prospective users will also be able to opt for an Islamic or Conventional bank account. A linked checkbook is available to all Standard Chartered digital account holders. Furthermore, these accounts will have debit and credit card options for account holders. Providing users with permanent access to their finances through online and mobile banking, this is a great digital banking option for non-resident Pakistanis!   

Summary

Regardless of your specific financial needs, there’s likely a digital bank account suited to them. For those residing in Pakistan, TAG is the first digital bank to go public. For non-resident Pakistanis, there are many Roshan Digital Account options that can also be opened remotely. 

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As a Current mobile banking app affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.