Alipay, the online payment service run by an affiliate of Alibaba, is being launched in Europe as the e-commerce giant looks to tap into the growing number of Chinese tourists coming to the continent.
Alipay is run by Ant Financial and allows people to pay for items in stores and online across China. Ant Financial has struck a deal with Wirecard, a German payment processing company, which will let merchants using Wirecard's point-of-sales terminals accept Chinese visitors' purchases made with Alipay.
Stores currently using Wirecard's technology will require a software update rather than a new machine and will scan a barcode on an Alipay user's smartphone to process a payment.
The Chinese are the top global spenders abroad and France, Italy and the U.K. are the countries in which foreign tourists spend the most money, according to Global Blue.