Alipay+, a global cross-border digital payment and marketing solutions provider, is striving to provide cash-free and mobile-friendly travel experiences for Asian tourists in the Chinese mainland, as it seeks to partner with merchants and enable greater QR code connectivity.
As of January 8, AlipayHK users can pay for metro rides in Shenzhen using their local app to enhance a seamless travel experience for Hong Kong visitors in the mainland. The service is enabled through efforts between Alipay+ and the city’s subway operator, following a similar payment system integration with bus operators in major cities across Guangdong province.
What does this mean for Chinese mainland?
Venetia Lee, General Manager of Ant Group Greater China International Business, said, “As a pioneer in digital life, we hope to play a bigger role in building digital infrastructure to enhance connectivity in the Greater Bay Area, and contribute to better development of the region.”
This development comes as China begins to optimize regulations on travel between mainland and Hong Kong, lifting quarantine requirements that were in place for almost three years.
“As the demand for travels between mainland and Hong Kong remains strong and cross-bound activities begin to normalize, we expect to witness the wide adoption of AlipayHK on the Chinese mainland, where Alipay+ solutions have already been adopted by millions of merchants that are ready for the return of international travelers,” Lee further commented.
Powered by Alipay+ solutions, AlipayHK, one of the most popular e-wallets in Hong Kong, is widely accepted in the mainland by retailers, convenient stores, supermarkets, restaurants, cafes, bubble tea shops, hotels and other tourist spots, where users can scan the same local merchant’s QR code or present their in-app QR code to be scanned for payment.
The connectivity with merchants across China is not limited to AlipayHK. Last November, Alipay+ announced on the sideline of the Singapore Fintech Festival that its partners like South Korea’s Kakao Pay and Malaysia’s Touch ‘n Go eWallet would be accepted in mainland, in a drive to facilitate payments from global visitors ahead of the Hangzhou Asian Games.
After a trial run in Yiwu, Zhejiang province, users of Kakao Pay and Touch ‘n Go eWallet are expected to pay in a seamless way with their respective apps while getting around in Hangzhou and its neighboring cities where the Hangzhou Asian Games will take place, in addition to other major Chinese cities including Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen.
Alipay+ offers unified global mobile payment and marketing solutions that ultimately connect merchants with multiple e-wallets and payment methods. In addition, consumers can conveniently use their preferred local payment methods while transacting seamlessly in a different market and be able to enjoy marketing offers by the merchants through Alipay+.
What is the market reach of Alipay+?
Globally, over the past year Alipay+’s merchant coverage has more than doubled since last year to over 2.5 million, which includes digital entertainment providers, lifestyle services, e-commerce platforms and a wide range of brick-and-mortar businesses that cover major airports, duty free shops, convenience stores, cafes, restaurants and tourism facilities.
Businesses across Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Malaysia and other Southeast Asian markets are embracing Alipay+ to connect with over 15 digital payment methods through one-time integration, and better engage with over 1 billion consumers.
Alipay+’s merchant coverage includes over 1,000 online platforms, over 10 major airports, over 90,000 convenience stores, over 360,000 restaurants, nearly 200,000 taxis and major hotel brands, department stores, duty-free shops and tourist facilities in Asia and Europe.