Cashless Payments – UnionPay’s Response to the Global Pandemic

Phnom Penh, Cambodia. With the present global pandemic caused by COVID-19, personal hygiene and observing social distancing are critical as safety measures. However, we still need to move around to meet the requirements of our daily lives. In order to better protect our health, it is only wise and safe to use cashless payment methods when it comes to paying at the supermarket, pay for electricity, water, phone, house rents, to mitigate the possibility of exposure to the deadly virus.

UnionPay International aims to continuously deliver world-class quality financial solutions that offer security over financial handlings of its customer based on innovation and adaptation to the current business trends. UnionPay offers diverse payment methods that adapt to the evolving situation, like the global health crisis that we are facing right now. These payment platforms are tailored to the needs of its customers.

Indeed, UnionPay customers can opt for several cashless payments available in Cambodia to support their daily payment needs. These cashless payments include several payment modes that reduce the need for physical transactions like handling bank notes, and face-to-face contact.

UnionPay Online Payment offers convenience through multiple security technology and risk monitoring, to ensure the safety of online payment, regardless of purchasing from local e-commerce merchants or cross-border ones for essential goods, without leaving the comfort of our homes. Currently, UnionPay is accepted by more than 20 million online merchants worldwide. These merchants are based in 200 countries and regions, including here in Cambodia, in Thailand, Japan, USA, South Korea, Hong Kong, Europe and more, covering wide and varying fields of retail, healthcare, online food, grocery deliveries and more. For example UnionPay customers can order pizza from The Pizza Company or food delivery from Nham24 and Muuve so that they need not go out to queue and pack food. If they want to stay health, they can stay fit at home by ordering sportswear and sports goods from Decathlon at

If you really need to go out for a quick grocery run, UnionPay cards are widely accepted at major supermarket chains like AEON MaxValu, Lucky Supermarket, Bayon Supermarket, Thai Huot Market and more. At AEON MaxValu market, you even get to enjoy 5% off with UnionPay.

When paying at merchant physical stores, use an UnionPay Debit or Credit card instead of bank notes, which may have a lot of germs and bacteria. Working with local partners like ABA Bank, Acleda and PPC Bank, UnionPay has been actively deploying Contactless terminals at merchants like Smart Shops and Lucky Supermarkets – just a tap of the UnionPay card on the merchant terminal will authorize the purchase, there is even no need to hand the card to the cashier, allowing our customers to further reduce physical contact.

It is no surprise that bank notes are unhygienic, given the nature of its usage and that money is one of the most frequently exchanged items in the world. Therefore, they collect significant number of bacteria and even viruses.

A team of researchers from New York University have conducted the first comprehensive DNA study* on $1 bills from USA, and found 3,000 different types of bacteria that cause acne, staphylococcus infections that cause meningitis (which is the inflammation of the lining of the brain), pneumonia, gastric ulcers, food poisoning, and antibiotic resistance. These bacteria could be ingested when we directly rub our eyes or eat food using our hands, after handling money without washing or sanitizing it thoroughly. Distinctively, the US dollar bill is prone to bacteria, because it’s printed on cotton-based paper, which is more absorbent than the plastic polymer notes used in Australia, Thailand, Singapore and Malaysia. Another study conducted in Singapore also supported the above findings.

From an economic point of view, cotton-based paper makes money less durable, with an average lifetime of only 21 months. Cambodian Riel is now printed on cotton-based paper.

It’s little wonder that government and associations in surrounding nations are advocating cashless payments. In Thailand, the Thai Bankers’ Association urged the general public to use e-payment channels to minimize the risk of any infection. Singapore’s central bank also urged the use of digital payment to support safe distancing measures.   

Similarly in Cambodia, the National Bank of Cambodia has also urged government ministries, financial institutions and the public to use electronic payment where possible to combat the spread of Covid-19.

By utilizing UnionPay’s electronic payment solutions, our health is better protected against possible exposure to different diseases and viruses.

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