As we already mentioned in a post from last week, Wechat is becoming a great platform for online payment. But unfortunately there are always uncertainties about online shopping for foreigners in China. Chinese customers use Taobao and Wechat payments, but for the creation of the bank account they provide their own Chinese ID.  That becomes an issue for foreigners that plan to stay longer in China, and blocks them from all the benefits of cheap online shopping.

We can inform you that there is a way around this. For WeChat payment a foreigner can create account in some banks and enjoy the freedom that this creates. Not all banks allow people from abroad to sign-up for WeChat payment. Some of them require a Chinese ID and the process gets you stuck. Here are a few options that will allow this procedure:

Chinese Merchants Bank – for both debit and credit cards

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Agricultural Bank of China – credit cards only

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These are the banks that we know of so far. We are certain that in the future this operation will increase as China becomes more open towards the foreign markets and many foreigners come to live here.

As mentioned in our earlier article, a person can add his credit or debit cards through the “Wallet” menu in WeChat. Simply press the “Add Card” option and follow the procedure.

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The next menu will just ask for your card details and then if needed it will require the Chinese ID. But for the banks that we suggested there won’t be a requirement for Chinese ID.

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WeChat offers a lot of extremely convenient functions which benefit everyone. After the credit/debit card is set up, a person can get access to each of these features:

  • Mobile Top Up – top up your credit for the phone. Very convenient and easy.
  • Wealth – Track your spending and savings in the account.
  • Lottery – who feels like some gabling? It’s on the tip of your fingers.
  • Order Taxi – Easy way to get a taxi if you are in a big city.
  • Specials – Online shopping mall for any kind of products.
  • QQ Coins – buy currency for your QQ account with an ease.
  • Lucky Money – Send and receive money from friends or contacts.
  • Group Buying – special offers for meals in restaurants. Reduced prices and promotions.
  • Credit Card – send money to another card or account.
  • Tencent Charity – Donate money for charity.
  • Movie Tickets – Buy tickets for the cinema.
  • Go Dutch – find a dining place, choose how much you would like to pay and meet new people on that table using the same program.
  • Air Ticket – Buy plane tickets.

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All these awesome features are easier and easier to access. Tencent is creating a dominant platform for online shopping and is challenging Alibaba on its own territory. But this struggle between giants benefits only us the simple customers, because we receive more special offers and reduced prices. Hopefully this article was helpful for every foreigner that plans to stay for a longer period of time in China.

Make sure you check our Blog for more amazing news and opportunities in China!