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What Are the Key Differences between UPI and UPI Lite

UPI transaction

UPI vs UPI Lite

United Payments Interface (UPI) and UPI Lite represent two facets of digital payment systems. UPI, a comprehensive platform, enables seamless transactions, linking multiple bank accounts, and offers a wide range of services. On the other hand, UPI Lite is a simplified version, catering to users seeking basic functionality. It’s like a basic mobile phone with call and text capabilities.

Outlined below are the differences between UPI (Unified Payments Interface) and UPI Lite.

ParticularsUPIUPI Lite
ProductThis is a 24×7 payment system for real-time transfer of money between two bank accountsThis is an on-device account where the transaction takes place between the sender’s UPI Lite account and the receiver’s bank account in real time.
Transaction limitThe maximum amount that can be transferred in a day from a Bank account is Rs. 2 Lakhs. A total of 20 transactions can be done from a Bank account in a span of 24 hours.Maximum amount that can be transferred from a UPI Lite account in a span of 24 hours is Rs. 4000. There is NO limit to the number of transactions done through UPI Lite.The maximum limit of a transaction is Rs 200.
Fund transferMoney can be sent and received through UPICurrently, only money can be sent using UPI Lite. Any credit or refund will be made to the user’s linked bank account. 
Use of PINFor every transaction, the user has to key in the 4 or 6-digit PINNo PIN is required to send money using UPI Lite
Checking transaction historyEvery transaction will be recorded in the Bank’s passbook and also in Paytm’s Balance and History sectionThe Paytm’s Balance and History section enables users to review all of their transaction records. Additionally, on a daily basis, users will receive an SMS from the bank that consolidates a statement of all transactions performed during the day.
Availability300+ banks and all major payment appsCurrently, 9 banks and only 2 payment apps, namely Paytm and BHIM 

What is UPI Lite

UPI Lite is an on-device wallet feature that allows users to make real-time small-value payments.

“UPI and UPI Lite are both revolutionary in their own right. While UPI has transformed the digital payment landscape in India, UPI Lite is set to take it a step further by making digital transactions accessible to every Indian, irrespective of their internet connectivity. UPI Lite will give more wings to UPI transactions, expanding the reach and impact of digital payments. It’s not about one versus the other, but about how both can coexist to accelerate financial inclusion in our country,” said Amit Nigam, Executive Director & COO at BANKIT.

To make payments through UPI Lite, money has to be loaded to UPI Lite Account from the user’s linked bank account. This UPI Lite balance can be used to make small transactions of Re 1 to Rs 200.

  • How UPI Lite works: UPI Lite works by adding money to the UPI Lite account through the linked bank account. once done, the user can complete transactions of upto Rs. 200 using the UPI Lite account balance. Users can add up to Rs 2,000 twice a day to UPI Lite account, resulting in a cumulative daily usage limit of up to Rs 4,000.
  • Transaction limit: When using UPI Lite, you can make real-time transactions up to Rs 200. The maximum you can keep in your UPI Lite account at any time is Rs 2000, but you can add up to Rs 2000 twice a day, which brings the maximum daily limit to Rs 4000.
  • Fund credit: Currently, debits, i.e., payments, can be made using UPI Lite. The amount will be transferred directly to the user’s bank account for credit and refunds.
  • Viewing UPI Lite transaction history: The transfer of funds from the linked bank account and UPI Lite account will be available on the payment app transaction history.  Additionally, users will receive a daily SMS statement summarizing all UPI Lite transactions conducted during the day.

Note: Lite users have the option to close their account at any time or transfer funds from their Lite account to their bank account with a single click, and without incurring any fees.

What is UPI

UPI is an around-the-clock payment system that can be used to transfer funds in real time. As per the data estimates of the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), there are currently more than 385 UPI live members comprising banks and Prepaid Payment Instruments (PPIs) that facilitate UPI payments in the country.

To transfer money through UPI, a user needs a smartphone, a reliable UPI application such as Paytm and a virtual ID. This UPI ID allows for real-time transfer of funds through multiple methods such as bank account details, mobile number, or QR code scanning.

  • How UPI works: To perform transactions using UPI, it is necessary for the user to have a reliable UPI application, such as Paytm. Upon opening the application, the user can then choose to enter the recipient’s mobile number, UPI ID, or scan their QR code. Once that’s done, the user needs to specify the amount and select a payment option from the available ones, and then proceed to complete the transaction.
  • Transaction limit: Currently, the upper limit of fund transfers in UPI is Rs 2 lakh.
  • Transfer Funds: Sending or receiving money through UPI is possible by simply using a mobile number. However, users can also opt to use their UPI ID or bank details to complete transactions. In this way, UPI provides multiple options for users to conveniently transfer funds.
  • Viewing UPI transaction history: Users can check the transaction history in the UPI-supporting app on their smartphones by clicking on the “transaction history” tab.


Identifying the difference between UPI and UPI Lite reflects that while UPI remains one of the most popular instruments of digital payments, UPI Lite adds to it. It not only allows faster and hassle-free transactions but also augments the bandwidth of UPI. While the operational process, transaction limits, and purpose of the feature differ, it is interesting to note how UPI Lite compliments UPI and streamlines the whole payment process making it more efficient and seamless.

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