Golden Week | Macau among most popular places for Alipay transactions

Alipay transactions throughout the eight-day Golden Week holiday numbered eight times as many as in last year’s seven-day period, according to data released by service operator, Ant Financial Services Group, with Asia dominating the list of top-ten destinations in terms of in- store transaction volume.

Hong Kong topped the list in terms of destination transaction volume, followed by Thailand, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Macau, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand.

Despite the high spending in Macau, among the other listed countries and territories, the eight-day holiday was reportedly a disappointment for the local gaming industry even as tourism authorities assured visitor figures were up.

Nevertheless, Ant Financial Services noted that Asia saw considerable growth in the use of Alipay this year, with Singapore in the lead, where transaction volumes increased by a factor of 30.

In Japan, transaction volumes were 16 times higher than last year’s figure, while Hong Kong and Taiwan saw 13-fold growth. Thailand registered six times the transaction volume of last year.

Meanwhile, in Australia, transaction volumes increased 20 times, and New Zealand saw a six-fold increase.

Similar growth was seen in Europe, where six times as many transactions were also recorded this year. Germany, the UK and France accounted for 40 percent, 23 percent and 22 percent of European transaction volumes. Italy, where Alipay launched just this April, accounted for a further 5 percent.

Average per capita spend through Alipay increased by about 50 percent compared with 2016, to RMB1,301, according to the company. Per capita spending was considerably higher in destinations outside of Asia, particularly Europe, where users spent an average of RMB3,150 through Alipay.

Switzerland posted the highest per-capita spend of any country or region at RMB36,298, well over ten times the average for Europe as a whole.

Ant Financial Services Group is an affiliate company of the Chinese Alibaba Group responsible for operating Alipay, the world’s largest mobile and online payments platform.

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