China has been a provider of so many commodities for the western world that it has become common practice to feature exclusive services for them. One of the industries that have been bombarded by the Chinese is the tourism industry. Ever since the mainland saw some kind of economic growth and fewer restrictions. The residents started to funnel out of the country on luxurious vacations, bringing even more business to the westerners. What’s more important is that Chinese people rarely go on budget vacations. They save enough money in order to have a real blast, the moment they visit a European country. The UK may not feature the best tourism industry, but it has seen so many Chinese tourists that it decided to adopt some of their payment methods.
SafeCharge International Group Ltd, which is a payments services and technologies provider decided that this new wave of Chinese tourists was so profitable, that it needed to get its foot in the door as soon as possible. As a result, they partnered with World Duty Free at the London Heathrow Airport. This partnership will now give Chinese travelers the ability to use their WeChat to conduct payments within the borders of the airport. WeChat is pretty much everything digital combined within one application. It serves as a social media and has recently become the most used e-wallet payment solution in China. World Duty Free will now start working with SafeCharge’s POS application in order to help merchant accept QR code-based payments. All of this will convenient the Chinese travelers and help them adapt to the payment methods within the UK border, at least in the airport.
VisitBritain has documented the number of Chinese travelers in the UK last year, which amount to about 330,000 within 2017 alone. What’s important about these numbers is that just there 330,000 tourists managed to contribute over one billion pounds to the UK economy. WeChat has already caught up with the massive Chinese tourism boom in the world and is now offering partnerships with various tourist destinations, in order to make payments for their citizens a lot easier. Plus, they get to use the transaction fees outside of the country as well. Any merchant that features WeChat as a payment method can expect quite a lot of business with these tourists. WeChat actually provides marketing services to the partners as well, which further increases the tourist’s desire to visit them.
What the future holds
World Duty Free has already commented on the partnership, stating that there has already been an increase in the transaction values in Terminal 4. Other Heathrow terminals will soon be seeing the addition to further maximize the capability of the partnership. SafeCharge was the key player within all of this, by supporting the deployment and quality support.
Chinese tourist may not be aware of their impact yet, but they are making waves in terms of digitalization of the payment methods way over in the west. The reason behind this is that Chinese shoppers are the probably one of the most tech-adjusted customers in the world. The fact that Chinese tourism is growing at a massive rate 20% every year, makes some merchants reconsider their, local market adapted business models and start implementing digital payments to accommodate the wealthy tourists coming their way.