Home rental firm Airbnb is now accepting Alipay, the huge Chinese Internet payment offering, on its site, reports ReCode.
This isn’t necessarily the beginning of mainstream U.S. acceptance of Alipay, as it might be little more than an attempt to make Chinese travelers more comfortable. “Airbnb has been slowly rolling out the Alipay option since the summer for people who visit its site from a Chinese IP address,” the story said. “One big reason: It felt it was missing out on business from Chinese travelers who didn’t have a dual-currency credit card or the PayPal account necessary to purchase a stay through Airbnb, according to its global payments head, Lex Bayer.”
Now that travel from China is a footnote. Business travel from China alone “has grown more than 250 percent year over year at Airbnb, Bayer said. Since Airbnb added the Alipay option, 60 percent of new users have chosen to pay with it.”