SINGAPORE – Over a million PayLah! hawker meal subsidies have been redeemed in less than three months since DBS and POSB launched the "5 Million Hawker Meals" scheme on 10 February.
The scheme, which aims to subsidise five million meals over 12 months – from 10 February to 19 January 2024 – offers cashback to the first 100,000 diners who use the PayLah! app to scan and pay for their meals every Friday in at least 11,600 stalls with SGQR codes islandwide. Users will then receive cashback of up to S$3.
In a statement on Monday (1 May), DBS said that the cashback rewards for Friday (28 April) "were fully redeemed at about 1pm". "Users are informed on the PayLah! app when all meal cashback rewards have been redeemed," the bank said.
Among those who redeemed their cashback rewards, about 12 per cent were senior citizens while 24 per cent earned less than S$2,500 a month.
PayLah! transactions, which "currently make up more than half of all digital payments in hawker centres", also more than doubled, the bank said.
Additionally, "hawker stallholders also observed a boost in their business, with some reporting an increase of between 15 per cent and 25 per cent in their weekly earnings".
The three most popular hawker centres where people redeemed their meal cashback were Amoy Street Food Centre, Ghim Moh Food Centre and Kampung Admiralty Hawker Centre. The top three hawker stalls were Yam Mee Teochew Fishball Noodles (Kovan Food Centre), Ding Yee Super Soup (Yi Jia Food Centre), Coffee Break at Amoy Street (Amoy Street Food Centre).
Jeremy Soo, head of DBS' consumer banking group, said, "Besides diners, hawkers have also been great advocates who have been spreading the word and encouraging their customers to use pay digitally to enjoy the cashback. While this scheme is a small gesture of encouragement, it underscores our purpose of serving the needs of our customers and the community, and making a positive impact on society."