MBway - useful or not?

Hi All, any feedback on the usefulness of MBway in Portugal?
Do it allow for some unique features?
Particularly any use-cases for GV holders?

I am trying to open a bank account in PT and have a dilemma of registering a non-PT phone number (i.e. more convenient as my primary phone but will miss MBway) or a PT phone number (which would be less convenient to carry around but will have MBway).

I registered successfully my non-pt phone number with MBway, but have not tried.

I use MBway often in PT (it facilitates all sorts of payments), and it is part of the bank app (Millenniumbcp). The bank app (on iphone) is downloadable with a PT or non-PT number but the phone number is/must be linked to your PT account. MBway scammers exist so be careful - a downside.
I have an eSIM for PT, so the same phone takes more than one number (ie no need for 2 phones).
If you want to use MBway sometimes, perhaps download the PT bank app on the non-PT phone or switch to eSIM on your primary phone?

I have MBway on the BPI app using my overseas number, no problem.

I don’t find it useful however - in fact it’s annoying - takes much longer than Applepay (the benefits seem to be the merchant’s bank in lower fees) but most shops/kiosks that accept MBway will also take contactless/Applepay etc which is more convenient to use.

With free instant SEPA payments now doesn’t seem to add much for domestic IMHO.

Thanks everyone! The bank rep told me it would only work with a PT number… :smirk:

I guess I’d need some special phone for that?
Or any new phone takes unlimited number of eSIMs?

After several years I got a new iphone last year. In Europe, the iphone 15 can take one physical SIM and x number of eSIMs. I prefer carrying only one phone so transited from physical SIMs to eSIMs so that I can use physical SIMs when really necessary (eg on travel).
Not familiar with other phones, but they may be the same.

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OK that’s great, thanks.
But you only can use 2 SIMs simultaneously as ‘live’ connections on the same iphone, right?

Right. You can keep both on (roaming or not), and choose which one responds to a particular call/ or from which you respond to a message. Only 1 for WhatsApp & other apps, I believe.

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FWIW, I use Nokia 105 with 2 physical sims, but that phone does not do much else than call/sms :face_with_monocle:

May I shake your hand, and escort you to the 21st Century? :joy:

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I use MBWay with my PT number and yeah it’s super useful, particularly for paying other people. Think of it like both Venmo and Apple Pay for Portugal, along with some other useful stuff. You’ll want it if you plan to live or spend a lot of time here.

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Honestly good on @tommigun for going low-tech. It’s unironically probably better for your brain from what I’ve seen, I’ve tried a few halfhearted attempts at it but it’s hard


Yeah, only two live at the same time. But what I do for some numbers where I need to receive text messages/2FA codes only is I put the SIM or eSIM in an iPhone SE (2020 version or newer) and stick it in a drawer (but plugged in/turned on). You’ll then receive all texts to all your active iPhones (just enable SMS forwarding or whatever it’s called).

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Oh I agree. Hats off to @tommigun (and my OH)!
My comment was tongue-in-cheek…

lol how many eSIMs do you have Thomas? International man of mystery over here!

Haha, not quite! I’ve just got five or six SIMs/eSIMs that I need or want to keep active for various reasons. I’ve lived in quite a few countries, and for some of them I still need a local SIM to access certain services.

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Hi Onward,
What Esim company do you suggest for PT that also gives you a phone # in addition to data?

For the other poster, here is a list of Esim compatible phones: What devices support eSIM? - Airalo Help Center

Here is a link to a previous post giving more information on the main options: Postpaid or prepaid cellphone plans - #2 by Onward.

I have MB way installed on a US iPhone 15 and find it useful at cashless places like music festivals, and the occasional restaurant that does not accept non-PT debit/credit cards.

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