Alipay spreads its wing to tourism hotspots

If you want a piece of the action in China’s outbound tourism market, you may want to accept Alipay as one of the payment options for your services and products. Some of London’s attractions, including London Eye, Madame Tussauds London and the London Dungeon have done so already, in an effort to boost sales to Chinese tourists.

China’s outbound tourism market has become the largest in the world, with more than 130 million overseas visits being made last year alone. To enable Chinese tourists to pay for entrance tickets, UK Merlin Entertainments (tourist attraction operator) recently decided to partner with Alipay, China’s largest mobile payment platform.

According to China Daily, there is a growing trend for tourism destinations targeting the Chinese market to adopt mobile payment systems such as Alipay and WeChat Pay. Experts say that adopting the payment system that is familiar to Chinese tourists will potentially be effective in increasing their spending. Retailers such as Harrods, Selfridges, Holland and Barrett have made the same step as Merlin. Alipay is now available for Chinese visitors to use at retail outlets in 18 European countries. Its tax-refund service is supported at 76 European airports.

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