Behind every successful trip is meticulous, logistical labor. From deciding what to wear, where to go and what to do, a journey out of town is not without its struggles. We tend to hold on to our security blankets, often in the form of our wallets, where our cash and cards are kept. So it may seem daunting to embark on a “cashless adventure” — one where you surrender your wallet and go on a four-day trip to Baguio with a little group of strangers — but that’s the premise that PayMaya presented in an effort to power Panagbenga as the Philippine’s first “cashless festival.”
For starters, PayMaya is an app that also serves as a virtual prepaid card for shopping online, paying bills, and more. You can also opt to get a physical PayMaya card that you can link to your account online. Of its many features, one highlight is the PayMaya QR which allows you to just scan the QR code of the merchant and pay using your app, all within a few seconds. With the festival rush in Baguio, its efficiency is something that managed to surprise me — the QR availability can be seen sprinkled around the city, from small merchants like a taho vendor to established enterprises like a bar.