Visiting China? You can soon pay for your purchases with Alipay.
According to a report on the South China Morning Post, Ant Financial Services Group “will give foreign visitors to the mainland” access to Alipay.
This is a pretty big move, given that previously, foreign visitors couldn’t use any of China’s mobile payment systems because a local phone number and Chinese bank account were needed.
In a statement released today (5 Nov), Ant Financial mentioned that it will allow foreign visitors “up to 90 days’ usage of its Alipay smartphone application”.
There is no need for the account to be tied to a Chinese bank account.
How It Works
Via its Alipay app (available for download and use on iOS and Android devices), visitors will be able to register for the international version of the app with their overseas phone numbers.
Referring to it as an “international e-wallet”, funds can be loaded onto a prepaid card provided by the Bank of Shanghai with international debit or credit cards.
The minimum top-up amount for each card is 100 yuan (~S$19.37), with the balance capped at 2,000 yuan (~S$387.44).
The card is valid for 90 days, and any balance will be refunded after.