China’s Golden Week appeared to be good for Alipay, the digital payment unit of Alibaba, which saw a big uptick of in-store transactions outside China compared to a year ago.
According to a news release, Alipay stated that its Chinese users engaged in eight times the in-store transactions overseas than they did in 2016 during Golden Week. What’s more, Alipay said Asia led the way in terms of main travel destinations based on transaction volume. Of the Asian countries that saw the most robust digital payments, Alipay said Hong Kong led the way, followed by Thailand, Taiwan, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Macau, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand.
In Singapore, the spending volumes increased by a factor of 30, while in Japan transaction volumes were 16 times last year’s amounts. Meanwhile, Hong Kong and Taiwan volumes were 13 times the 2016 figure, the digital payment company said. Thailand saw six times the transaction volume of last year, Alipay said.
Usage also jumped in other parts of the world, with transactions increasing 20 times in Australia and six times in New Zealand. Europe saw volume jump six times last year with Germany, the U.K. and France accounting for 40 percent, 23 percent and 22 percent of European spending volumes, respectively. Italy, where Alipay launched in April, accounted for a further 5 percent of transactions.
Other statistics to come out of Alipay during Golden Week include the fact that per capita spend increased by 50 percent to 1,301 yuan, with the spend much higher than average in destinations outside Asia, namely Europe, leading the way. Users spent an average of 3,150 yuan through Alipay, while Switzerland saw the highest per capita spend of 36,298 yuan of any country or region, well over 10 times the average for Europe as a whole. And finally, the U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand had above average global spend via Alipay.