How to Use WeChat Pay?

Authors: Katherine Kocen

2019-02-15

A universal payment app in China, WeChat is super convenient. However, it seems a bit complicated for foreigners to set up the WeChat Pay without knowing what’s involved, and this article will show you how to navigate the whole WeChat Pay process.
What you need:
Your passport + A Chinese phone plan + A Chinese bank card
Get a Chinese Phone Number+
WeChat Pay does not link to foreign banks, and in order to get a Chinese bank account, you'll need a Chinese phone number.
The three main providers are China Telecom, China Mobile and China Unicom. Just bring your passport to one of the providers' locations and you can get a Chinese phone number.
Open a Chinese Bank Account
Once you've gotten a Chinese phone plan, you'll be able to sign up for a Chinese bank account. Bring your passport there too, and be ready for a bit of paperwork. If your Chinese isn't good, it will be a good idea to bring a friend who can translate, while someone at the bank will be able to help.
Link Your Bank Card with WeChat Pay
If you download WeChat outside of China, the option to use WeChat Pay won't appear by default. Follow these steps to start using WeChat Pay:
1. Open WeChat and tap "Me," then "Wallet";
2. Tap "Bank Card";
3. Tap "Add a Card";
4. Enter your Chinese bank card number;
5. Enter your personal information as prompted.
How to use WeChat Pay?
WeChat Pay is based on QR codes. There are two main ways that you can use WeChat Pay. You can scan a QR code that's been posted in a shop. You'll be prompted for the payment amount and your Chinese bank account's PIN. Show the vendor the confirmation screen to show that the transaction is finished.
You can also present your own WeChat Money QR code to be scanned. Chain locations, convenience stores and restaurants often use a special type of scanner instead of posting WeChat QR codes.
Instead of typing in the payment amount yourself, this will charge your account for the price of your transaction.
Congratulations! You're now ready to use WeChat Pay wherever you go.

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