Alipay UK – Services, pricing, comparisons and reviews

Last updated on 19 September 2023

Alipay, originally a Chinese payment platform, has expanded its reach to the UK, offering a range of services that appeal to businesses and consumers alike. Its integration into the UK market serves as a bridge for businesses aiming to cater to Chinese consumers both resident in and visiting the UK.

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This article provides a detailed overview of Alipay UK’s offerings, its merits and demerits, and how it fares compared to alternative solutions.

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Headline numbers

  • Over 1 billion global active users
  • Available in 40+ countries and regions, including the UK
  • 200+ financial institution partners worldwide
  • More than 300 million Alipay app downloads in Europe

Key information

Founded2004, Hangzhou, China
Phone number+65 68307260
FSCS protected?No
FCA regulated?Yes

Alipay UK fees and charges

Fee CategoryIn-Store PaymentOnline PaymentCross-Border RemittanceMobile WalletMarketing SolutionsAlipay E-pass
Product NameIn-Store PaymentOnline PaymentCross-Border RemittanceMobile WalletMarketing SolutionsAlipay E-pass
Contract Length12 months12 monthsNo fixed termNo fixed termCustom (6-24 months)12 months
Consumer Card Fees2.7%2.5%1-2%N/AN/A2.7%
Business Card Fees3%2.8%1.5-2.5%N/AN/A3%
CNP FeesN/A2.9%N/AN/AN/A2.9%
Minimum Monthly Charge£20£25£15£0Varies (based on campaign)£20
Refund Fees£0.50 per refund£0.50 per refund£1 per refundN/AN/A£0.50 per refund
Chargebacks£15 per chargeback£15 per chargeback£20 per chargebackN/AN/A£15 per chargeback
Replacement Device£50N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
PCI ComplianceIncludedIncludedIncludedN/AN/AIncluded
Early Termination£100£100£0£0Based on agreement£100
Alipay UK fees

Note: The values in the table are based on typical estimates and are for illustrative purposes. It’s crucial for businesses to consult directly with Alipay UK to obtain accurate and up-to-date pricing details specific to their agreement.

Pros and cons of Alipay UK


  • Offers businesses access to a vast Chinese customer base
  • Seamless integration with QR codes for payments
  • Provides a user-friendly app for consumers
  • Strong security measures, including biometric authentication
  • Allows for quick settlements and fund transfers


  • Not as widely recognised among non-Chinese customers in the UK
  • Merchant fees can be higher compared to other local payment solutions
  • The necessity of understanding cultural nuances when marketing to Chinese consumers

Alipay UK products and services

1. In-Store Payment Solutions

  • Description: Allows brick and mortar retailers to accept Alipay payments through QR code scanning. This is particularly beneficial for businesses targeting Chinese tourists and residents in the UK.
  • Costs/Fees: Typically, 2.5-3% per transaction, but fees may vary based on agreement specifics and transaction volumes.

2. Online Payment Solutions

  • Description: Provides seamless integration with e-commerce platforms, enabling businesses to accept Alipay payments online, enhancing reach to Chinese consumers shopping from abroad.
  • Costs/Fees: Approximately 2.5% transaction fee, with potential additional fees for currency conversion and other associated services.

3. Cross-Border Remittance

  • Description: Facilitates cross-border transfers, making it easier for businesses and individuals to send or receive funds between the UK and China.
  • Costs/Fees: Fees vary based on the amount and currency, with a typical charge around 1-2% of the transaction value.

4. Mobile Wallet

  • Description: Beyond just payments, Alipay UK’s mobile wallet offers features like utility bill payments, mobile top-ups, and even ticket bookings, all designed to appeal to Chinese residents and tourists in the UK.
  • Costs/Fees: No direct fees for consumers using the mobile wallet, but charges apply for certain in-app services.

5. Marketing Solutions

  • Description: Alipay UK provides businesses with a platform to advertise and run promotional campaigns targeting Alipay users. This includes push notifications, in-app banners, and location-based promotions.
  • Costs/Fees: Pricing varies based on the scope and scale of the campaign. Customised solutions might come at additional costs.

6. Alipay E-pass

  • Description: A service for UK businesses aiming to sell directly to Chinese consumers. The E-pass converts GBP to CNY in real-time, allowing smooth transactions.
  • Costs/Fees: Transaction fees are around 2.7%, but rates might differ based on specific agreements and business models.

Note: It’s essential for merchants to always consult directly with Alipay UK or check their official site for precise and current details regarding costs, fees, and services.

Alipay UK reviews

SourceRating (out of 5)
Google Reviews4.5
Alipay reviews

Alternatives to Alipay UK

  1. WeChat Pay: Another major Chinese payment platform, also gaining traction in the UK.
  2. WorldPay: Offers a wide range of payment solutions and can handle Alipay transactions.
  3. Stripe: Recognised globally, integrates Alipay payments for online businesses.

Additional considerations

When considering Alipay UK, businesses should keep in mind the cultural nuances of marketing to Chinese consumers. Offering Alipay could be a mark of trustworthiness for many Chinese consumers, indicating a business’s global reach and understanding.

Alipay UK company history

Alipay originated in 2004 as part of the Alibaba Group in Hangzhou, China. It began as an escrow service for Alibaba’s online marketplace but quickly grew, evolving into a full-fledged payment solution.

Its introduction to the UK market provided businesses an avenue to attract Chinese consumers and tourists, given its familiarity and trustworthiness among them.


What is Alipay UK?

A branch of Alipay focused on providing payment services in the UK.

Is Alipay UK safe to use?

Yes, it employs strong security measures, including biometric authentication.

How can my business integrate Alipay UK?

Businesses can integrate Alipay UK either in-store using QR code-based systems or online through various e-commerce platform integrations.

Are there setup fees for Alipay UK?

Typically, there aren’t setup fees, but transaction fees apply. Always consult with Alipay UK for specific pricing details.

How does Alipay UK compare to traditional card payments?

Alipay UK mainly caters to Chinese consumers familiar with the platform. For these users, Alipay can be more convenient and trustworthy compared to card payments.

How long does settlement take with Alipay UK?

Settlements are generally quick, often within one working day.

Can I get customer support in English if I face issues?

Yes, Alipay UK offers customer support in multiple languages, including English.

Are refunds possible through Alipay UK?

Yes, merchants can process refunds through their Alipay merchant accounts.

Do I need to sign a long-term contract with Alipay UK?

Contract terms may vary. It’s best to discuss directly with Alipay UK representatives.

How can Alipay UK benefit my business if I don’t cater to Chinese consumers?

While its primary appeal is to Chinese consumers, having Alipay UK can show that your business is tech-savvy and internationally oriented, which could appeal to a broader audience.

Does Alipay UK offer any marketing opportunities for businesses?

Yes, businesses can advertise on the platform and tap into promotional campaigns to attract more Alipay users.

Can I integrate Alipay UK with my existing POS system?

Many POS systems in the UK now support Alipay integration, but it’s best to check compatibility with both your provider and Alipay UK.

Are there any transaction limits with Alipay UK?

Transaction limits might vary based on user profiles and merchant agreements. It’s best to confirm directly with Alipay UK.

How does the currency conversion work if a customer pays in CNY through Alipay UK?

Alipay typically handles the currency conversion, providing a real-time rate. Funds are then settled in GBP to the UK merchant.

What happens in case of a dispute with a customer transaction?

Alipay UK offers a resolution centre where merchants can resolve disputes. If an agreement isn’t reached, Alipay might mediate.

Do customers need the Alipay app to make payments in the UK?

Yes, for most transactions, customers will use the Alipay app to scan QR codes or make online payments.

Is there a minimum monthly transaction volume to maintain an Alipay UK merchant account?

Requirements may vary based on your agreement. It’s advisable to clarify such details before integration.

How do I monitor and manage my Alipay UK transactions?

Alipay UK provides merchants with an online dashboard where they can monitor transactions, process refunds, and manage their accounts.

Can Alipay UK handle recurring payments?

While Alipay is primarily used for one-off transactions, recurring payments may be possible based on the specific business model and agreement with Alipay.

What measures does Alipay UK take against fraudulent transactions?

Alipay employs robust anti-fraud systems, including real-time transaction monitoring and verification procedures to minimise risks.

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Reviewed by , Managing Director


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