In a significant move to facilitate foreign visitors in China, Ant Group and Tencent have announced new developments in their mobile wallet services, Alipay and WeChat Pay, respectively.
Ant Group, the official payment partner for the Hangzhou Asian Games, announced that Alipay had completed the support for overseas users to use mobile payment services in China.
Athletes and tourists from around the world can now enjoy various convenient services across the country using Alipay, including shopping, hailing a taxi, taking the subway, and visiting tourist attractions.
To use these services, users must download the Alipay app, click “Register Account”, and select the “International Version”. After completing the registration, users can click on “Add Now” to enter the card binding page and follow the prompts to complete the card binding operation.
Alipay now supports international card organizations such as Visa, Mastercard, and Discover Global Network (including Diners Club). Furthermore, the usage of Alipay after binding an international card is no different from using a domestic bank card, supporting both QR code payment and payment code payment.
Similarly, Tencent announced a deepened cooperation with international card organizations such as Visa, Discover Global Network (including Diners Club), JCB, and Mastercard.
This collaboration aims to systematically open up WeChat Pay’s merchant network in various cities in China. Inbound individuals can activate WeChat Pay by using their passport, Hong Kong and Macau Residents Travel Permit (Home Return Permit), Taiwan Residents Travel Permit (Taiwan Compatriot Permit), Hong Kong and Macau Residents Residence Permit, Taiwan Residents Residence Permit, and Foreign Permanent Resident ID.
After binding an international bank card, they can conveniently consume at millions of small and medium-sized merchants.
These developments mark a significant step towards making mobile payments more accessible to foreigners in China, providing them the same convenience that local residents enjoy. It is expected to significantly enhance the experience of foreign visitors in China, especially in the context of the upcoming Hangzhou Asian Games.