Malaysia sees increased cross-border transactions via Alipay+ and PayNet

  • 5th most popular destination for Chinese, 6th amongst other Asian tourists
  • Enabled 13 international e-wallets & bank apps for seamless travel experience

Malaysia sees increased cross-border transactions via Alipay+ and PayNet

Data from Alipay+ and PayNet shows a robust rebound of consumer spending during the first back-to-normal Chinese New Year (CNY) travel season after the Covid-19 pandemic, especially in cross-border tourism in Malaysia.

For CNY 2024, data from Alipay+ shows that Malaysia is the fifth most popular destination globally for Chinese tourists, with spending in Malaysia in the first seven days of CNY at two times that of CNY 2019 and more than ten times compared to 2023


Growing Alipay+ ecosystem in Malaysia to welcome tourists

Since Nov 2023, Alipay+ has been accepted by more than 1.9 million DuitNow QR merchants (Alipay has an 80 million merchant network in China). At the same time Alipay+ has enabled 13 international e-wallets and bank apps that can now be used in Malaysia: Alipay (Chinese mainland), AlipayHK (Hong Kong SAR, China), Kakao Pay, Naver Pay and Toss Pay (South Korea), Changi Pay and OCBC Digital (Singapore), GCash and HelloMoney by AUB (Philippines), Hipay (Mongolia), MPay (Macao SAR, China), TrueMoney (Thailand) and Tinaba (Italy).

The addition of new e-wallets provides added convenience to tourists while bringing more growth opportunities to Malaysian merchants where Alipay+ has also partnered with top merchants across multiple tourism-focused industries in retail, F&B and everyday conveniences.

Malaysia sees increased cross-border transactions via Alipay+ and PayNet"With its use spreading across age and income groups, mobile payment is increasingly becoming an important promoter of local and cross-border commerce in Asia and beyond," said Dr Cherry Huang (pic), General Manager of Alipay+ Offline Merchant Services, Ant International. "Particularly through our partnership with PayNet, we have seen a significant increase in Alipay+ transactions on the DuitNow QR network, which shows that it not only provides great convenience to tourists but also brings more opportunities to local businesses, both big and small. We look forward to strengthening our collaborations with local partners to contribute to the vibrant tourism sector in Malaysia."

Besides Chinese tourists, Malaysia ranks as the sixth most popular destination amongst Asian tourists (ex-Chinese). Via transactions from Alipay+ payment partner apps, tourists from Hong Kong SAR, the Philippines and Thailand are the top spenders in Malaysia, aside from tourists from the Chinese mainland.

Additionally, in Nov 2023, Alipay+ and PayNet enabled travellers with 8 Alipay+ supported e-wallets to make QR payments seamlessly at DuitNow QR merchants’ touchpoints across Malaysia. The impact has been clear. In the four-month period since launch, compared to Dec 2023, in Feb 2024, the number of average daily transactions via Alipay+ on DuitNow QR has increased by 2.5 times, while spending via Alipay+ partner users at DuitNow QR merchants has also increased 2.5 times.

"As the national payments network and a pivotal infrastructure for Malaysia, we are immensely proud to be part of this transformative journey with Alipay+,” said Gary Yeoh (pic), Chief Commercial Officer ofMalaysia sees increased cross-border transactions via Alipay+ and PayNet PayNet. “This partnership, exemplifying how strategic collaborations can drive economic growth and enhance the tourism experience, has facilitated easy payment for international visitors and opened up a world of opportunities for local merchants."

As Malaysian marks 50 years of partnership between Malaysia and China, various initiatives have been introduced to promote tourism in Malaysia, including visa-free travel and ongoing discussions about establishing direct flights between smaller provinces in China and Malaysia.

With the government working to boost tourism, particularly in preparation for Visit Malaysia 2026, PayNet’s focus remains on enhancing travellers’ cashless experiences.

“Looking ahead, PayNet is committed to innovating and expanding our services to support the dynamic needs of tourists and merchants alike, reinforcing Malaysia's position as a top-tier global destination," Yeoh said.


Robust recovery, diversified destinations for outbound Chinese tourists using Alipay

Hong Kong SAR, Japan, Macao SAR, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, France, Australia and Canada are the top destinations for Chinese travellers by their Alipay spending. Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore combined saw a 7.5% increase over 2019 and a 580% leap over 2023, with Thailand leading in total volume and Malaysia showing the most significant growth. New visa-free policies from major Southeast Asia destinations, including Malaysia, are critical enablers of the cross-border travel boom.

A global campaign to attract Chinese tourists has been in full swing on the Alipay+ merchant network since Dec 2023. In the CNY holiday week between Feb 9th and 12th, the number of transactions made by Alipay users overseas surpassed 2019 by 7%, while consumer spending recovered to 82% of the 2019 level, or 2.4 times that of 2023.


Promoting outbound travel among Alipay+ partner e-wallets and bank apps

With new partnerships in 2023 and increased travel, total cross-border spending on the region's leading e-wallets powered by Alipay+ increased by 252% year-on-year. Daily average transactions increased by 304%. Japan, South Korea, Macao SAR, Thailand and Singapore are the top 5 most popular destinations for Alipay+ consumers besides the Chinese mainland.

International e-wallets and cards-enabled Alipay accounts in the Chinese mainland saw multi-fold expansion. During CNY 2024, international travellers to China spent 500% more on their international card-enabled Alipay accounts at merchants in the Chinese mainland compared to 2023. Chinese restaurants, tourist attractions and public transportation are the most popular use cases for international visitors travelling in China and experiencing the festival. Since Sept 2023, Alipay+ has supported ten leading e-wallets and payment apps in Asia, including Touch ‘n Go eWallet, to serve their roaming users across Alipay's 80-million merchant network in China.


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