The travel freaks from India have something to cheer about. On his two-day visit to France, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that Indians will soon be able to use UPI (Unified Payments Interface) during their visit to France.
“India and France have agreed to use UPI in France. In the coming days, it will begin from the Eiffel Tower, which means Indian tourists will now be able to pay in rupees,” PM Modi said, referring to the Unified Payments Interface, or UPI.
Rolling out cross-country digital payment systems will enable Indian tourists to make payments without having to carry forex cards or foreign currency.
UPI integrates multiple bank accounts into a single mobile application into a single mobile application.
The National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI) that runs UPI signed an MoU with France’s Lyra nearly a year ago. Under the mutual arrangement, the Indian digital payment system will work on the Lyra network of France.
This effectively means when someone has to make a payment in euro (France’s official currency) in Paris, one can make payment via UPI in Indian rupee and the amount equivalent to the sum in euros will get deducted.
Prior to this, a similar agreement was signed between UPI and Singapore’s PayNow, enabling citizens in both the countries to carry out cross-border transactions.
Buying a ticket for Eiffel Tower
1. You go to Eiffel Tower and want to buy a ticket (with access to lift to the top) costing €28. This is equivalent to ₹2,576 (at the rate of ₹92/ euro).
2. After the UPI service becomes active in France, Indian tourists will be able to keep Indian currency in foreign denomination in a mobile wallet meant to carry out transactions in France.
3. Now, let us suppose you have already transferred ₹20,000 to this wallet from your UPI account. This means you have access to 217 euros in the wallet (assuming one euro equals ₹92).
4. As you make payment of €28 for a ticket to Eiffel tower from that wallet, the balance will reduce by 28 euros, leaving behind €189 euros in the wallet.
However, one must be aware that although this announcement has been made by PM Modi, the final modalities are yet to be worked out before the actual rollout of services takes place. Until then, the wait is on. And so are speculations!