International Card Networks, Alipay to Enhance Mobile Payments Experience

International card networks, including Visa, Mastercard, JCB, and Discover Global Network, are launching a major campaign with Alipay, the digital payment and lifestyle service platform in China, “to further enhance international visitors’ mobile payment and travel experience in the country on the 30-day countdown to the Asian Games.”

Under the campaign, which will run “from September 15 to October 31, 2023, overseas tourists can win the opportunity to earn a discount of up to 100 RMB per transaction when making payments with their Alipay account linked to an international card of Visa, Mastercard, JCB, Discover®, and Diners Club International at Chinese mainland merchants within the extensive Alipay merchant network during the Asian Games.”

Since 2022, Alipay has partnered “with international card networks to further upgrade its payment service for international travelers.”

After downloading the Alipay app, overseas tourists can sign up and link an international credit or debit card from Visa, Mastercard, JCB, Discover, and Diners Club “to pay at tens of millions of Alipay partner merchants across China, including restaurants, cafes, tourist attractions, shopping malls, street stalls and public transport.”

Recently, the Alipay app also “updated travel services for international travelers to China.”

Shirley Yu, Group General Manager at Visa Greater China, said:

“Visa is glad to work with Alipay to provide in-bound international travelers with convenient and seamless mobile payment experiences, as the international tourism market continues to recover. Visa is committed to enabling the acceleration of global travel recovery, which means more tourism spending in local economies, and more international people-to-people exchanges through travel and cooperation in sports, culture and cross sectors.”

Dennis Chang, Executive Vice President and Division President, Greater China, Mastercard, said:

“Mastercard affirms its commitment to the China market, as well as to its mission of powering economies and empowering people through its continued partnership with Alipay. As travel and tourism rebound, Mastercard is delighted to work with its partners to provide enhanced digital payment solutions that address the evolving needs of international travelers and enable cardholders, worldwide, to pay like a local, ensuring peace of mind throughout their journey.”

According to the latest Mastercard data insights, consumer spending has “shown resilience with a continued focus on experiences and travel.”

Globally, during the 2nd quarter of 2023, cross-border travel “was robust, reaching 154% of 2019 levels, up 6% from the previous quarter.” Meanwhile, China’s inbound cross-border travel market “is also improving.”

Osamu Hino, President of JCB International China, said:

“We are delighted to work with Alipay to provide convenient, secure and safe mobile payment services in the Chinese mainland to JCB Card holders worldwide. In the wave of digitalization, together with Alipay, we will continue to strengthen payment technologies and services, explore more possibilities in the payment area, and offer more convenient and diverse payment solutions to users.”

Chris Winter, Managing Director, International Markets, Asia Pacific, Discover Global Network, said:

“By partnering with Alipay, the leading digital payment and services platform in China, we greatly enhance shopping convenience and accessibility for our valued cardholders from around the world. Through this partnership, visitors can effortlessly explore the wonders of China, from shopping and dining to embarking on exciting explorations, while immersing themselves in the rich local culture. We are dedicated to ensuring that every moment of our cardholders’ stay in China is filled with payment convenience, enjoyment, and memorable experiences.”

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