Alipay, a mobile payment company in China, said on Monday (Sept. 12) that it will beginning charging a withdrawal fee due to rising costs.
According to a report covering the announcement, the withdrawal fee will kick in on Oct. 12. Alipay users will have a withdrawal quota of 20,000 yuan (around $3,000). When the customer reaches that quota, they will be charged a fee of 0.1 percent for each withdrawal. Other forms of payment and money transfers will still be free. Withdrawing happens when the money is transferred out of Alipay and put back into a bank account. Alipay noted customers can use their bonus points from Ant Financial to exchange the withdrawal quotas. Alipay didn’t put any limits on the number of exchanges. Bonus points are accumulated in Ant Financial when customers use Alipay to make automatic payments.
The latest move by Alipay comes as the competition in the payments market is heating up, even for the leading digital payment service in China. In May, it announced a deal with Uber in which users can tap the service to hail an Uber ride wherever they are and pay. Going forward, the 450 million Alipay customers can use their preferred digital payments app to hail a cab in all 69 countries in which Uber operates. Currently, riders can use Alipay in mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau. The financial deal behind the partnership remains not fully disclosed, though Uber confirms that Alipay will be a piece of each transaction it powers.
The Alipay tie-in also wraps up India’s Paytm. “There are very few partnerships that have the scale,” Emil Michael, Uber’s senior vice president of business, told reporters on a call, referring to the partnership as “one of the most important tie-ups Uber has ever done.”