Alipay, the world’s leading payment platform, today announced a new agreement with Barclaycard, a multinational credit card and payment services provider that processes nearly half of the UK’s credit and debit card transactions. The partnership will aollow retailers to accept Alipay transactions in stores across the UK.
The new agreement will enable UK retailers to take advantage of the growing volume and buying power of Chinese visitors.
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“Through this strategic partnership, Alipay will now be able to offer many more UK merchants the opportunity to connect and engage with a growing number of Chinese visitors. This is another step forwards in our vision to offer Chinese tourists a seamless travel and payment experience when travelling overseas,” said Roland Palmer, Head of Europe, Middle East and Africa at Alipay.
With Alipay, UK retailers will be able to accept in-store Alipay payments without replacing their existing system. Retailers will also benefit from being at the fingertips of hundreds of millions of highly-engaged Alipay users, who can also search for outlets near their location to find out details such as opening hours, directions, and whether there are any discounts available.
Feedback from retailers has been incredibly positive; Barclaycard is already in discussions with around 70 clients interested in becoming early adopters.
For Chinese tourists, this means they get to retain the familiar mobile payment and lifestyle experience they enjoy at home, as well as benefits from Alipay’s competitive foreign exchange rate.
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In addition to the UK’s 488,000 Chinese residents and students, tourists from China represent an increasingly important customer group. In the past year, the number of Alipay users in the UK has doubled. VisitBritain, UK’s official tourism website, is expecting 483,000 visits from China in 2019, with Chinese visitors expected to spend 50 percent more this year, reaching £1 billion.
Featured photo credit to Bloomberg