Airtel Payments Bank

Airtel Payments Bank Ltd. or Airtel Bank has become the India’s first payments bank to start operations and to offer basic banking services as a pilot basis in Rajasthan. Now, customers across Rajasthan will be able to open bank accounts at 10,000 Airtel retail outlets.

This initiative is one of the step for the financial inclusion and Digital India campaign. It will be a boon to residents in far flung areas who are yet to have access to formal banking. The combination of such efforts shall lead to digital revolution at every corner of India.

Shashi Arora, MD & CEO, Airtel Payments Bank, said

“Airtel Payments Bank is fully committed to the Government’s vision of financial inclusion and banking for all. Airtel Payments Bank will play an important role in taking banking services to the last mile in a quick and efficient manner and benefit millions of unbanked citizens of this country.”

Airtel Payments Bank Services’ Important Information

  1. Digital Banking: The Airtel Bank is a fully digital and paperless bank.
  2. Bank Account: The bank accounts can be opened by customers (non-airtel customers also) by using Aadhaar based e-KYC (Know Your Customer). Beside this, no other documents required for this purpose.
  3. Bank Account No.: Customer’s Airtel mobile number would function as a bank account number.
  4. Money: Money can be transfer to any bank account in India (Free money transfer from Airtel to Airtel numbers within Airtel Bank).
  5. Interest Rate: Offering 7.25% interest rate on deposits in savings accounts.
  6. Insurance: Personal accidental insurance of 1 Lac with every savings account.
  7. Deposit & Withdrawal: Easy deposit and withdrawal facility across a network of Airtel retail outlets.
  8. ATM/Debit Card: Initially, there will not be any credit or debit card facility in this banking. Customers can deposit or withdraw cash at any designated Airtel retail outlets, which will function as Airtel banking points.

How to Use Airtel Bank

Airtel Customers

  1. Airtel Money App through Google Play Store and iOS App Store.
  2. USSD by dialing *400#; or via a simple IVR by dialing 400.
  3. Both the USSD & IVR options are available in Hindi and English language and work on simple feature phones as well.

Non-Airtel Customers

  1. The non-Airtel customers can access Airtel Bank’s services by dialing “8800688006“.

In general, customers can also visit any designated Airtel retail outlet to access services (and not just the outlet where they have opened the account).

Payments Bank

The payments bank are part of financial inclusion. The purpose of payments banks is to provide small savings accounts and payments/remittance services to migrant labour workforce, low income households, small businesses, other un-organised sector entities and other users.

Excerpts of Payments Banks Features

  1. Acceptance of Demand Deposits: Initially, restricted to holding a maximum balance of 1,00,000 per individual customer.
  2. Issuance of ATM/Debit Cards: Can issue debit cards and ATM cards, though cannot issue credit cards.
  3. Services:  Offer services such as automatic payments of bills and purchases in cashless, chequeless transactions through a phone.
  4. Loans:  Cannot undertake lending activities.
  5. Banking Correspondent (BC): Can become Banking Correspondent (BC) of another bank and offer all products / services which a BC can offer.
  6. Financial Products: Can distribute non-risk sharing financial products viz. mutual fund units and insurance products, etc.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has granted ‘in principle’ approval for payments banks to 11 entities viz.  Airtel M Commerce Services,  India Post, Vijay Shekhar Sharma (Paytm),  Reliance Industries, Aditya Birla Nuvo, Tech Mahindra, Vodafone M-Pesa, etc.

Megha Jain

Engg & Freelance Author

Straight forward