Convenient Alipay Guide

Convenient Alipay Guide

Table of Contents:

  1. Introduction
  2. How to Download and Install Alipay
  3. Setting Up Alipay with Your International Bank Card
  4. Using Alipay for Electronic Payments in China
  5. Tour Pass Feature
  6. Prepaid Card System
  7. Managing Your Alipay Balance
  8. Enabling Scan to Pay Feature
  9. Daily Transaction Limits
  10. Additional Features of Alipay
  11. Conclusion



Are you planning a trip to China and wondering how you can conveniently make payments without opening a bank account or having a work visa? Look no further! In this guide, I will walk you through setting up Alipay with your international bank card, allowing you to use electronic payments immediately in China. Alipay is one of the top e-payment platforms in the country, alongside WeChat Pay, and offers a wide range of payment options, from high-end retail stores to local markets. Say goodbye to carrying cash and embrace the ease of mobile payments with Alipay.

How to Download and Install Alipay

To begin, you will need to download and install the Alipay application on your mobile device. If you are using an Android device, simply go to the Play Store, search for "Alipay," and install the app. Apple users can find the app in the App Store. Once installed, open the application and click on the "Agree" button to proceed. Grant any necessary permissions, such as access to location services, and change the language settings to English.

Setting Up Alipay with Your International Bank Card

After selecting English as your preferred language, navigate to the "Me" tab and click on "Settings." From there, go to the "Region" section and choose "International." This ensures that you can use Alipay outside of China. Once your region is set, you will be prompted to sign up by entering your mobile phone number, which should include the area code of your home country. Alipay will send you a one-time password via SMS for verification purposes. Confirm your international status when prompted, and you will be redirected to the home screen.

To make electronic payments using Alipay, you need to set up your payment method. Think of this process as acquiring a prepaid card rather than opening a bank account. Proceed by selecting the "Tour Pass" option, which is specifically designed for tourists. Through the Tour Pass, you can load a specific amount of money into your Alipay account, allowing you to make payments during your trip. Choose the desired amount, fill in your personal details, including your passport information and card details (Visa or Mastercard), and agree to the terms and conditions of the prepaid card system.

Using Alipay for Electronic Payments in China

With your tour pass activated, you now have a prepaid card in your Alipay account. This card is valid for 90 days, making it ideal for tourists. You can check your card balance on the Alipay home screen, along with the expiration date. Remember, once you load money into your Alipay account, it will stay there until you spend it. Therefore, it's important to be mindful of your spending and reload the card as needed.

To make a payment using Alipay, you have two options: scanning a QR code provided by the merchant or allowing the merchant to scan your QR code. To initiate the payment process, simply click on the "Scan" button in the app and follow the instructions. You may be asked to enter your PIN for security purposes. It's crucial to remember your PIN as it is required for every transaction. Alipay has a daily transaction limit of 2,000 RMB and a higher limit for the total daily spending, typically around 5,000 RMB. Please note that these limits may vary, so it's advisable to test the app yourself.

Tour Pass Feature

The Tour Pass feature offered by Alipay is a game-changer for tourists visiting China. It allows you to enjoy the convenience of electronic payments without the need for a Chinese bank account or work visa. With the Tour Pass, you have the freedom to explore China and make cashless transactions seamlessly. This feature is only available for 30 to 90 days, depending on your selection during the setup process. It's essential to take advantage of this convenient payment option and travel hassle-free.

Prepaid Card System

Alipay's prepaid card system provides tourists with a flexible and secure way to make payments in China. Unlike traditional bank accounts, you can think of your Alipay account balance as a prepaid debit card. You load a specific amount of money onto your account and use it for transactions within the card's validity period. This ensures that you have control over your expenditures and do not have to worry about managing a bank account while traveling in China.

Managing Your Alipay Balance

Monitoring and managing your Alipay balance is crucial for a smooth payment experience. The Alipay app provides a clear overview of your current balance, along with the expiration date of your tour pass. It's important to note that the money you load into your Alipay account will not automatically be transferred back to your bank account. Therefore, it's important to be strategic with your reloading decisions. If you are a tourist, it's advisable to load money only when needed and avoid keeping large sums in your Alipay account.

Enabling Scan to Pay Feature

To ensure the security of your Alipay account, you need to enable the "Scan to Pay" feature. This feature adds an extra layer of protection by requiring a personal password to authorize payments. To enable this feature, navigate to the Alipay homepage and click on either of the two bottom buttons. Choose "Scan" to initiate the payment process or allow a merchant to scan your QR code. Follow the prompts to set up your personal password, which will prevent unauthorized transactions.

Daily Transaction Limits

Alipay enforces daily transaction limits to protect user accounts from fraudulent activities. Currently, the transaction limit for individual payments is set at 2,000 RMB, which should be more than sufficient for everyday expenses. The app also imposes a higher limit on the total daily spending, typically around 5,000 RMB. As a user, it's essential to be aware of these limits and plan your transactions accordingly to avoid any inconvenience.

Additional Features of Alipay

Apart from its primary function as an e-payment platform, Alipay offers numerous features that make life easier for foreigners living in China. From booking plane tickets and train tickets to hailing a taxi, Alipay provides a comprehensive range of services, catering to the needs of both tourists and expatriates. Stay tuned for future videos that delve deeper into these features, providing you with invaluable insights to make the most out of your time in China.


In conclusion, if you plan to visit China and require a convenient payment option without the need for a Chinese bank account or work visa, Alipay is the perfect solution. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can set up Alipay with your international bank card and unlock the freedom of cashless transactions throughout your trip. Enjoy the ease, convenience, and security that Alipay offers, while immersing yourself in the vibrant culture of China.

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