Unlike any other years when DBS / POSB would announce their new or good-as-new notes, this year is a tad different.
Their press release was sent on the same day that MAS (Monetary Authority of Singapore) released their own press release.
And the subtext for both press releases is similar: go contactless if possible.
But since we’ve clickbaited you into this article with a headline that promises information about the new and good-as-new notes, let’s start with that.
Reservations for New & Good-as-New Notes to Open from 18 Jan
Our friendly neighbourhood bank has just released information about their new and good-as-new notes.
Unless you’re 60 and above, or you’re a customer with disabilities, you can’t walk into any bank to get those notes; instead, you’ll need to secure a slot via DBS’ online reservation system prior to visiting a branch for these services.
DBS/POSB will double the number of online reservation slots this CNY to accommodate more customers. Dedicated new notes collection hours for customers with reservation slots will also be extended to two hours per day, up from one hour per day.
The online reservation slots will be organised by two timing windows, with reservation periods commencing on 18 January for the first window and 24 January for the second. Collection of new notes will then begin on 25 January and 1 February respectively.
To ensure as many customers as possible are able to access the service, each customer will have a maximum of one reservation slot.
Simply put, if you reserve between 18 Jan to 23 Jan, you’ll collect between 25 Jan to 29 Jan. If you reserve between 24 Jan to 5 Feb, you’ll collect between 26 Jan to 10 Feb.
Reservations must be made at least two days before collection date, e.g.: If you reserve a slot on 26 Jan, your earliest available collection date will be on 28 Jan.
Customers will be able to choose from denominations of SGD 2, SGD 10 and SGD 50 via the online reservation system, as well as their preferred date, timing and branch from which to collect their new and good-as-new CNY notes. To reserve a slot, visit https://go.dbs.com/sg-cny2021.
Withdrawal from ATMs
But of course, if you want to withdraw those notes from ATMs, that option is available, too. In fact, there would be more ATMs for this specific purpose.
To prevent potential crowding during the new notes exchange period, DBS/POSB will further boost access to new notes withdrawal services. This CNY, 61 ATMs disbursing new and good-as-new notes will be available across 41 locations island-wide – up significantly from last year’s 40 ATMs across 20 locations.
This includes 40 POSB new notes pop-up ATMs, which have become a CNY mainstay since their introduction in 2015. In partnership with People’s Association (PA), DBS/POSB is the sole bank to provide this service, which has been highly popular with customers – over 450,000 transactions were processed at POSB new notes pop-up ATMs last year.
For the first time, DBS/POSB will also be converting 21 existing ATMs across select self-service branches to service customers’ needs for CNY new notes. These 21 self-service touchpoints will be dedicated to disbursing new and good-as-new notes this CNY.
From 25 January to 11 February (CNY eve), all 61 POSB new notes pop-up ATMs and self-service touchpoints will be operational from 10am to 10pm daily (10am to 1pm on 11 February). Each customer is limited to three withdrawals throughout this period.
Customers will be able to withdraw new notes in sums of SGD 100 (SGD 2 x 50), SGD 300 (SGD 10 x 30), SGD 500 (SGD 50 x 10) and SGD 600 (SGD 10 x 20 + SGD 50 x 8).
To help customers avoid crowded areas, DBS/POSB has revamped its new notes ATM map locator to include guidance on estimated wait times at each location.
Here’s full list of POSB new notes pop-up ATMs and self-service touchpoints: https://www.dbs.com/pop-up-atm/index.html
But here’s the thing: while the bank is doing its best to ensure that there are enough notes, you’re encouraged to give e-hongbao instead.
Today, MAS released its own statement, encouraging “Singaporeans to use e-hong baos during the coming Lunar New Year as they will help to reduce queues for physical notes and are more environmentally friendly. The Association of Banks in Singapore will actively promote e-gifting for the festive season.”
In fact, E-hong baos are part of a larger shift towards e-gifting that MAS and ABS are promoting. MAS also encourages FinTech firms to develop e-gifting solutions for different purposes, including gifting during festive periods. The most innovative FinTech e-gifting solution will receive special recognition at the Singapore FinTech Festival in November 2021.
MAS’ Assistant Managing Director, Finance, Risk & Currency, Mr Bernard Wee said, “The adoption of e-payments grew significantly this past year as it is more convenient than cash. The coming Lunar New Year offers an opportunity for us to build on this momentum, to spread the benefits of e-gifting, and to forge new traditions with our families and friends.
“E-gifting helps to reduce the queues at banks, and also helps to reduce the carbon emissions generated by the production of new notes for each Lunar New Year, estimated to be about 330 tonnes currently. This is equivalent to emissions from charging 5.7 million smart phones or one smart phone for every Singaporean resident for five days.”
Interesting enough, the central bank didn’t mention anything about COVID-19.
Maybe by 12 February, we would be at DORSCON Yellow?
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Featured Image: Travel_Adventure / Shutterstock.com (Image is for illustration purpose only)