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ComfortDelGro taxis now accept Alipay for e-payment of fares

SINGAPORE — Commuters taking ComfortDelGro’s taxis have another mobile payment option, after the taxi operator offered Alipay on its fleet of 15,000 taxis in July.

Taxi drivers will also receive a S$1 incentive in their bank accounts by the next working day for every successful Alipay transaction they accept. TODAY file photo

Taxi drivers will also receive a S$1 incentive in their bank accounts by the next working day for every successful Alipay transaction they accept. TODAY file photo

SINGAPORE — Commuters taking ComfortDelGro’s taxis have another mobile payment option, after the taxi operator offered Alipay on its fleet of 15,000 taxis in July.

Alipay, a popular digital payment system and smartphone application, is run by Ant Financial, the financial affiliate of China’s e-commerce giant Alibaba.

In a press release announcing the official launch on Friday (Aug 18), ComfortDelGro said that, in slightly more than a month since it was made available in the cabs on July 12, more than 10,000 transactions have been made through the platform.

An administrative fee for using Alipay will be waived from Sept 1 to Dec 31 this year, the taxi company said, and commuters using the e-wallet app can get discounts of up to 20 yuan (S$4) every month.

Taxi drivers will also receive a S$1 incentive in their bank accounts by the next working day for every successful Alipay transaction they accept.

Alipay has more than 520 million active users and most are Chinese nationals.

Mr Ang Wei Neng, chief executive officer of ComfortDelGro Taxi, said: “The tourists from China have increased significantly over the years, and we want to make it easier for them to pay taxi fare with a wallet that they are familiar with ... We are already seeing hundreds of Alipay transactions daily, and with the official launch, we expect to see thousands.”

To pay for their fares with the app, passengers have to inform the taxi driver, who will select the option from the in-vehicle cashless payment terminal. A QR code will appear and the passenger will have to scan the code using the Alipay app before keying in a password to confirm the payment.

Warehouse supervisor Wang Chun Yu, 31, who is from Shandong, China, and in Singapore on a long-term visit pass, noted that the e-payment process is “as easy as the process in China”.

“Having Alipay available on board taxis will be convenient for my family and friends who visit from China. They can still travel on taxis when they don’t have enough Singapore currency,” he said.

Taxi driver Loh Kia Chin, 62, who has accepted a number of Alipay transactions, agreed: “Now, when I pick up tourists from China, I don’t have to worry about not having small change or that the tourists will not have Singapore currency.”

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