How to use BigPay in Thailand? -2024

Claire Millard
Minami Ishii
Last updated
25 June 2024

Paying with a card when you travel is convenient and usually safer than carrying lots of cash. If you’re planning the best way to manage your travel money during your trip to Thailand you might be considering getting a BigPay account and card. Using a specific card for your overseas payments can be a smart move and may help you cut costs overall - this guide walks through how to use BigPay in Thailand, and also a few other alternatives you may want to look into, like the Wise account and card - if BigPay isn’t right for you.

Go to Wise

How to use BigPay in Thailand 

BigPay offers a pretty broad range of services which you can use at home and abroad. For day to day use, you could use BigPay to split bills with friends, to pay local bills, scan and pay with QR, or to send local and international transfers. When you travel BigPay can be helpful thanks to its physical and virtual payment cards and easy to navigate app.

Here’s how you can use BigPay during your trip to Thailand:

  • Use your BigPay virtual card to make mobile payments

  • Use your BigPay physical card to make Paywave payments, or to make ATM withdrawals

  • View your account and transactions in the BigPay app

  • Freeze or unfreeze your card in the BigPay app

How to pay with BigPay in Thailand 

BigPay offers both a virtual and physical card you can use for payments while you’re in Thailand. To get started with BigPay you’ll first need to add money. You can add money in MYR before your trip, using a bank transfer or card - or by making a cash deposit in select outlets of stores like 7-Eleven. Once you have a balance in MYR in your account, you can use your BigPay virtual card with a wallet like Apple Pay to make mobile payments, or you can order a physical plastic card instead. Your plastic card offers contactless and chip & PIN payments, and can also be used for cash withdrawals.

When you spend in Thailand your transaction will be converted back to MYR using the network exchange rate plus a BigPay fee of 1%. Other network charges may also apply. If you make a cash withdrawal while you’re overseas, there’s also a 10 MYR fee peer withdrawal.

How to withdraw money with  BigPay at ATM in Thailand

If you choose to order a BigPay plastic card, you can use it to withdraw cash using Bigpay in Thailand. Plastic cards don’t automatically come with your BigPay account - there’s a virtual card instead. If you want to get your physical card you’ll need to enter your shipping information and pay a 20 MYR card order fee. Your card will then be delivered to you in the post.

Once you have your physical BigPay card you can use it in an ATM in Thailand, wherever you see the Visa logo. Here’s what to do:

  1. Look out for the Visa logo on an ATM

  2. Insert your card and enter your PIN when prompted

  3. Enter the withdrawal amount

  4. Confirm the withdrawal and wait for your money

  5. Take your money and your card

How to get a BigPay card

When you open a BigPay account online or in the BigPay app, you’ll be automatically issued a BigPay virtual card. As part of the account opening process you can also order a physical BigPay card. Simply follow the prompts to enter your shipping address and pay the 20 MYR issue fee, and your card will be delivered to you by post.

BigPay fees

There’s no fee to sign up with BigPay, but you may run into some BigPay fees when you’re using your account in Thailand or here in Malaysia. Here are some of the important costs to know about:

BigPay fee
Get a virtual cardNo fee
Get a physical card20 MYR
Top up fees

1 MYR + 2% for cash top ups

1% for credit card top ups

ATM fees

6 MYR locally

10 MYR internationally

Foreign transaction feeUp to 1% + network fee
Fees to send money overseasUp to 22 MYR based on destination

Exchange rate

If you’re using BigPay in Thailand you’ll need to know about the exchange rate used to convert your THB spending back to MYR. Your overseas purchases and withdrawals will be converted back to ringgit using the card’s network rate, with a BigPay fee of 1% of the transaction value. Some other card network fees may apply.

You can see the Visa network rate by searching online for the Visa exchange rate calculator, and entering the date your purchase was processed. You’ll also need to add the 1% BigPay fee where the calculator asks you to enter the bank fee. Bear in mind that the exchange rate you’re looking for is the one on the day the transaction was processed, which may not be the same day that you physically used your card in a store - the processing date may be slightly later.

What is BigPay?

BigPay is available for customers living in Malaysia or Singapore, and offers a digital wallet which comes with a free virtual card for mobile and online payments. You can also choose to pay to get a physical card for cash withdrawals. BigPay digital wallet services include local and international card payments,  ways to split bills, pay with a QR code, manage your budget, and send money in Malaysia or overseas.

How does BigPay work

With BigPay you’ll need to register an account online or in the BigPay app, and add a balance in MYR. Once you hold a balance in your digital wallet you can instantly access a virtual card to make mobile payments using a service like Apple Pay, or you could use your funds to send money to others, pay bills or split bills between friends. You’ll be able to order a physical plastic card for a 20 MYR fee, which you can use to make cash withdrawals. Whenever you spend or make a withdrawal overseas your MYR balance is converted to the currency you need with a 1% foreign transaction fee plus any applicable network charges.

Alternatives to BigPay for your trip to Thailand

BigPay isn’t your only option for spending conveniently in Thai baht when you’re on your trip to Thailand. You may also want to consider a multi-currency account and card from a provider like Wise.

Wise lets you hold and exchange 40+ currencies including MYR and THB. This means you can add money in ringgit and convert it to baht in the app if you’d like to, so you’ll know exactly what you have to spend while you’re on your trip. If you’d prefer to leave your money in MYR you can also do that - the Wise card will simply calculate the conversion for you when you pay. In each case, you get the mid-market exchange rate with a low fee from 0.33%, which can mean your money goes further when you’re in Thailand.

Go to Wise

BigPay personal account opening procedure

The easiest way to register with BigPay is to download their app and apply using your smartphone. That way you can complete the whole process - including verification - pretty quickly. Here’s how to open a BigPay personal account:

  1. Download the BigPay app

  2. Click Sign up and confirm you have a Malaysian residential address

  3. Enter your phone number for verification using an SMS

  4. Add your personal details and address, including shipping address for your card

  5. Complete the verification process

  6. Your account will be ready to use in about 48 hours

Once your account has been verified, you’ll need to add a 20 MYR opening deposit from your bank, or using a card. You can also order your physical card which will be delivered to your preferred shipping address.

How do I get verified on BigPay?

Before you can use your BigPay account you must complete a verification process. This is an important part of how providers like BigPay keep their customers and their accounts secure. To get verified with BigPay you’ll be prompted to upload a clear image of your identity card or passport, and then take a video selfie. The video selfie is used to ensure that your image matches that on the ID. The BigPay team will look at your application and aim to approve it within 48 hours.

Advantages and disadvantages of BigPay

Not sure about BigPay? Here are a few more pros and cons to consider:


  • Trusted local provider which is safe to use at home and abroad

  • BigPay’s digital wallet has lots of features like ways to split your bill with friends

  • Earn AirAsia rewards as you spend and get access to exclusive AirAsia sales

  • BigPay cards are issued on the Visa network which is globally supported


  • All overseas spending attracts a 1% BigPay fee, plus any applicable network costs

  • International ATM withdrawals cost 10 MYR each

  • No foreign currency balance options

  • You’ll pay 20 MYR if you want a physical BigPay card to use in an ATM

If you’d prefer to hold foreign currencies in your account, you may want to look at a provider like Wise which has options to hold and exchange Thai baht alongside many other currencies. Wise doesn’t charge a foreign transaction fee when you spend overseas - instead, if currency conversion is needed you get the mid-market exchange rate with a low conversion fee from around 0.33%.

Go to Wise

BigPay mobile app

BigPay has a mobile app you can download on both Apple and Android phones. You’ll be able to use the app to view and manage your account and transactions, to add a balance, freeze or unfreeze your card, pay bills, and more. You can download the BigPay app from Google Play or the Apple App Store.

BigPay Use limits

Your BigPay wallet has a maximum balance limit of 20,000 MYR. There are also another few important transaction limits, including the following:

Transaction typeBigPay limit
Maximum account balance20,000 MYR
Maximum paywave transactions1,000 MYR/day
Maximum POS payment10,000 MYR/transaction
Maximum transfer amount

Local payments: 5,000 MYR/day or 10,000 MYR/month

International payments have varied limits which are shown in the app

Maximum ATM  limits10 withdrawals/day OR 10,000 MYR

Can you use BigPay without a bank?

You don’t necessarily need a bank to add money to BigPay, although using BigPay with a bank is usually the cheapest option. You can add money to your BigPay account with a credit card or in cash if you’d prefer not to use a bank. However, there are fees for this - to add cash you pay 1 MYR + 2% of the value topped up, and for a credit card you’ll pay 1% of the value added to the account as a fee.


Is BigPay safe?

Yes. BigPay is safe to use, and licensed in Malaysia by the Central Bank. BigPay is also available to residents of Singapore, and is licensed there though MAS. As with all financial products and services, you’ll need to use common sense when using your BigPay account to keep your details secure and your money safe.

Conclusion: Using BigPay in Thailand

If you’d prefer to use a card to pay when you’re travelling in Thailand, BigPay can be an attractive choice. You can add your money to BigPay in MYR and then spend in THB with the Visa exchange rate + a fee of 1%. This is cheaper than the foreign transaction fee used by many banks. BigPay also comes with extra features like ways to pay bills, pay by QR, send money to others, and manage your budget.

The main downside to using BigPay in Thailand is the extra fee that foreign spending attracts - plus you’ll pay 10 MYR every time you use an overseas ATM. If you’d rather compare other products, take a look at the Wise account and card as a good alternative. Wise offers some free ATM withdrawals every month, and lets you add money in MYR and convert to THB or many other currencies in advance of spending if you’d like to. You can also just leave your balance in ringgit and let the card convert for you when you spend or withdraw. In both cases you’ll get the mid-market exchange rate with a low conversion fee from 0.33%, keeping down costs overall.

Go to Wise

How to use BigPay FAQs

How do I use BigPay for the first time?

To use BigPay you’ll need to register an account and get verified, which usually takes a couple of days. Add money in MYR from your bank, using a card, or even in cash. You can then transact with your BigPay virtual card, and order a physical card for cash withdrawals.

How can I pay with BigPay in Thailand?

Use BigPay in Thailand to check and manage your account, spend with your virtual or physical BigPay card, and to make cash withdrawals if you have a BigPay plastic card. Make sure you have some money in your account in MYR, and simply tap and pay as you would at home.

Is the BigPay account free?

There’s no fee to open a BigPay account, but you must make a 20 MYR opening deposit when your account is verified. There’s also a 20 MYR fee to get a physical BigPay card, and some transaction fees depending on how you spend.

Can you use BigPay without a bank?

You don’t necessarily need a bank to add money to BigPay. You can add money to your BigPay account with a credit card or in cash if you’d prefer not to use a bank.

What are the conditions to register a BigPay account?

To register for BigPay you’ll need a residential address in Malaysia or Singapore, and you’ll have to provide ID or a passport for verification purposes.