Chinese tourists can now apply for and immediately receive tax refunds through mobile Alipay app. Alipay, the world’s leading mobile payment and lifestyle platform operated by Ant Financial Services Group, announced that it has partnered with Global Tax Free (“GTF”), a tax refund agency, to launch the world’s first paperless mobile tax refund function in South Korea.
Alipay has consistently been at the forefront of innovation that supports mobile tax refund solutions globally. In early 2017, Alipay initiated a real-time tax refund service in Europe which enabled users to instantly receive tax rebates in their Alipay accounts after scanning their Alipay QR code at airport tax counters.
“Since 2013, Alipay has continuously explored ways to expedite tax refunds for Chinese tourists to enhance the outbound travel experience. Alipay users can already receive tax refunds at more than 80 airports and a growing number of in-city shops globally after processing at a tax counter,” said Danny Chung, General Manager of Alipay Korea.
“With this unique new function, Alipay users can skip the queue and process tax refunds on their mobiles, without filling out and submitting any paper work. This will both save time and make it easier to claim refunds. We look forward to working with our partners and leveraging our technological capabilities to bring more convenient tax refund solutions to outbound Alipay users,” added Mr. Chung.
South Korea is the world’s most convenient destination for tourists to claim tax refunds and approximately 10,000 merchants in South Korea support the GTF tax refund service. The introduction of the mobile service will expedite the tax refund process in South Korea. Alipay and GTF have plans to expand the tax refund service to more merchants and other countries in Asia in the future.
Operated by Ant Financial Services Group, Alipay is the world’s largest mobile and online payment platform. Launched in 2004, Alipay currently works with over 200 domestic financial institution partners. Over the years, Alipay has evolved from a digital wallet to a lifestyle enabler. Users can hail a taxi, book a hotel, buy movie tickets, pay utility bills, make appointments with doctors, or purchase wealth management products directly from within the app. In addition to online payments, Alipay is expanding to in-store offline payments both inside and outside of China. Alipay’s in-store payment service covers over 40 countries and regions across the world, and tax reimbursement via Alipay is supported in 29 countries and regions. Alipay works with over 250 overseas financial institutions and payment solution providers to enable cross-border payments for Chinese travelling overseas and overseas customers who purchase products from Chinese e-commerce sites. Alipay currently supports 27 currencies.