The new and updated version of WeChat now opens the Wechat Pay China wallet for Foreigners to add money to their account, even if they don’t operate a local account, find out more here:
If you are business travellers to or tourist in China, it should come as no surprise that paying for products or services with your private credit card is closed impossible, this is no doubt connected to the Chinese government regulations and resolve to boost the local financial payment space. The only option available is to open a Chinese bank account which requires documentation, verifications and approval. With that, you would be able to buy credit on the WeChat payment platform.
WeChat Pay, a close rival to Alipay, ranks as one of the most used payment methods in China with millions of users settling their transactions using the barcode on their smartphone. The payment solution, as of this update, isn’t a stand-alone application but integrated into the popular messaging application, WeChat.
All you to do is download the WeChat app and activate WeChat Pay to verify your identity when linking and unlinking credit cards to the app. No other service fees or commission are charged during the payment process.
Before now, most stores and merchants in China do not accept credit cards originating from foreign service providers like Visa or MasterCard which makes it highly difficult for tourists to have flexible payment options, it is either they pay with the Chinese official currency, Yuan or operate a local bank account in China which many might not really need for their few days visit.
For instance, if you were visiting China as a tourist, you would have to visit one of the Chinese banks, apply for a bank account, tender your visa documents for identity verifications and wait for the approval, all these were considered stressful and rigid.
“Ask someone to transfer RMB to you in exchange for USD. Unless it’s a friend, expect to pay a premium because there is a fee to exchange those Dollars back into RMB for the other person.
I myself do this from time to time but typically face to face and with cash upfront. Basically they have to hand me the cash before I transfer RMB to them from my Wallet and I use the Forex to get the current exchange rate, which can vary even over the course of a day.
Typically for a non-friend expect to pay a 15% premium. Possibly less if you exchange a larger amount. Assuming a CNY 6.8 exchange rate than $100 US = CNY 680 Less 15% you will only receive CNY 578 with the other person receiving CNY 102 for their fee. This is not unreasonable because that only equals $14.90 USD.”
You Can Now Add Money to your WeChat Wallet Without Chinese Bank Account:
Going forward, you don’t have to pay that high fees or go through the additional stress of operating a Chinese bank account as foreigners in China, WeChat pay now allows users to top up their wallet foreign cards.
You would be able to use your Visa card, MasterCard at millions of merchant stores where WeChat Pay is accepted, hence bypass the use of cash.
Here are the following features of WeChat Pay.
- Money transfer- through the WeChat app, you can not only transfer money to your friends but also keep track of your transaction histories.
- Lifestyle services – It provides you with instant messaging on latest offers on various merchant stores and discount available when you pay with WeChat pay.
- Travel services – The app lets you book flight tickets and pay conveniently.
- Charitable donation – You can make the world a better place by donating to various causes on the app.
How to get started on WeChat Pay as a Tourist
You will enjoy the simplest process of downloading this amazing app on your mobile phone. Just like you download other financial or non-financial apps into your mobile phone, you can download this app as well.
- To do so, visit the play store app icon or app store icon in your smartphone.
- Once this app opens, click on the search box and type the name, “WeChat”. The app will be seen in the search results.
- Tap on the icon to download it onto your smartphone. Once the download is finished, click to launch the app into your mobile. Then, go through the signup process and complete the verification. Then, use your username and password to sign in to your account.
- After logging in to your account, you can easily navigate through the app to use its different features. However, make sure that you never share your password or transaction pin with any other person. Otherwise, anyone can sign in to your account and make a transfer from your app.