Alipay is making its way into the sky (again), with help from United Airlines.
While the payment option is already available for Delta, United Airlines announced Thursday (Jan. 14) that it has partnered with Ant Financial to offer Alipay as an official payment on its site. United noted in its news release that Alipay provides its customers access to"more efficient and secure online payments."
“This exciting new partnership with Ant Financial’s Alipay is another good example of our strong commitment as the most-friendly U.S. airline in China, as we prepare to celebrate 30 years of doing business in China in 2016. I am confident that this service enhancement will offer more Chinese consumers the chance to travel to the U.S. along with our convenient China-U.S. flight schedules and Chinese services, both on the ground and in the air," said Walter Dias, United's managing director for Greater China and Korea sales.
Because Alipay's online payment platform has over 400 million registered users — and is the largest payment platform in China — this partnership opens up United's potential customer base in China to an entirely new audience. By adding this digital payment option to its site, it adds a faster way for Chinese consumers to pay, since it enables them to click "pay with Alipay," which connects to a debit card, credit card or a preloaded balance on their account.
“We are very pleased to partner with United and help them make online booking from China a hassle-free experience. By enabling the option to use China’s most trusted and secure payment system, Chinese travelers using United’s website can expect the safe, easy and consistent experience they have come to expect, while avoiding any currency barriers," said Jingming Li, President of Alipay U.S.