Payment services company Verifone and digital payment service Alipay, owned by China’s Alibaba, announced Tuesday (Oct. 17) they have formed a partnership that will bring the Alipay mobile wallet to U.S. taxis.
In a press release, Alipay said it is extending an existing global partnership to Verifone Taxi Solutions. Under the expanded agreement, Chinese consumers — and others on the platform — in New York and Las Vegas will be able to pay for taxi rides via the Alipay mobile wallet. Approximately 2,100 taxis in Las Vegas will accept Alipay by the end of October, and an additional 14,000 taxis in New York City will do the same by the end of November.
“Paying for taxis can be one of the most stressful elements of traveling abroad, particularly if you don’t speak the language,” said Souheil Badran, president of Alipay North America, in the press release. “By extending our partnership with Verifone to taxis in New York and Las Vegas, two of the most popular destinations in America for Chinese tourists, we are giving greater confidence to Chinese travelers that they will be able to pay for their taxi ride[s] using the same convenient payment method they use at home, without language barriers.”
According to the companies, Alipay is currently the leading online payment provider in China and the main way Chinese consumers make online and mobile payments. With millions of Chinese tourists expected to visit the U.S., particularly New York and Las Vegas, the deal enables them to easily hail and pay for taxis.
“Chinese visitors to the U.S. are increasing in number every year and we are continuing to elevate the cashless payment experience by making it easy to pay inside American taxicabs,” said Amos Tamam, senior vice president of global taxi systems at Verifone, in the same press release. “Enabling Alipay acceptance is yet another example of leveraging our smart transportation platform to drive utilization of traditional taxis which offer the safety of licensed and professional drivers along with predictable pricing.”