What is Alipay, and How Can You Use it to Send Money?

Last updated on March 5th, 2024 at 09:51 pm

If you support loved ones, make investments, or send money to yourself via Alipay, you’re like millions of other Chinese nationals who are living abroad. But are you wondering how to send money with Alipay safely? Look no further than online money transfer services such as Remitly.

The Alipay app is the largest third-party mobile and online payment system in China. Globally, it ranks as the third popular mobile payment provider, after PayPal and Google Pay.

You use Alipay because it has earned your trust—and that’s why Remitly makes it easy for you to send money to Alipay so that more of your money makes it back home.

Remitly’s app allows you to send money to Alipay-connected bank accounts, right from your phone. Learn what Alipay is, as well as the five steps you should follow to effortlessly send money to Alipay through Remitly.

What is Alipay?

Created in 2004 in Hangzhou, China, by the Alibaba Group, Alipay is one of the most popular payment methods in the world. Alipay members come from over 110 countries, including the United States, Spain, Israel, Singapore, and Brazil. As of the first quarter of 2022, Alibaba has over 1.3 billion active customers.

Alipay customers can send and receive money through the app, which functions as a digital wallet stored on their mobile devices.

As a “super-app” Alipay has plenty of additional features, including:

With an Alipay account, you can also use Taobao, a popular e-commerce platform that integrates with Alipay payments.

If you’re living outside of China but would like to send money back home to your friends and family, Alipay’s mobile payment service makes it easy to send money abroad. Instead of struggling to send money through financial institutions, Chinese nationals can use Alipay and Remitly to easily send money to loved ones back home.

Sending money with Alipay in 5 easy steps

Happy Chinese family in a cart

Are you wondering how Alipay works? It’s easy to send funds to family and friends in Asia using Alipay and mobile payment apps like Remitly:

  1. For first-time customers, download the Remitly app and create an account. Then select China as your destination country. To do a transfer to Alipay, you and your recipient will need to set up an Alipay account, if you haven’t already. Where you live affects how you can sign up and use Alipay, but the platform does allow foreigners to set up an account.
  2. Enter the amount you wish to send, and choose the date to send your transfer.
  3. Select Alipay as your preferred payment method.
  4. Enter your recipient’s name, address, and the email associated with their Alipay bank account.
  5. Select your method of payment (credit or debit card), and enter your payment information.

And that’s it! Give your details a quick review and press send. Then rest easy knowing that your money is on its way to your loved ones. Your recipient can track the transfer on their end, too.

Why should I use Remitly to send money to Alipay?

With Remitly, it’s easy to send money at any time, from any place, using your mobile device. We offer excellent exchange rates so your loved ones get more CNY per USD.

When you use Remitly to send money to Alipay from the U.S. to China for the first time, you can get an extra $15 when you send $100 or more.

Not only that, but Remitly’s 100% satisfaction guarantee ensures peace of mind. If there’s an issue with your transfer, you’ll get your money back.

How quickly will my money arrive?

With Remitly, sending money to Alipay is quick and efficient. Senders who pay with a debit or credit card can transfer money in real time.

If you’re not in a hurry, transfers via bank account take three to five days.

How much money can I send to Alipay with Remitly?

Yuan bills

Remitly is dedicated to helping all of its customers send money safely. At the same time, we prioritize safety by following international regulations that protect your information and your assets.

To that end, Remitly has sending limits based on the information provided by a customer. With Alipay, there are a few additional details to keep in mind:

  • When sending money to China, a strict limit of ¥50,000 per transfer applies to all transfers regardless of the service being used.
  • Recipients in China must have a Chinese national ID or a Foreigner’s Permanent Resident Identity card (FPRID) to receive transfers via Remitly.
  • Remitly transfer fees will apply for Chinese bank accounts.

Is Alipay safe to use with Remitly?

Yes, Alipay is safe to use with Remitly, which has proven itself to be a trusted payment platform for millions of people around the world. In addition to following international banking standards, Remitly prioritizes customer safety.

All of your logins and transactions are safe with Remitly, thanks to two-factor authentication and advanced encryption. Remitly can also send you SMS notifications when you make a transfer, so you’re aware of the process at every step of the way. If anything goes wrong during the transaction, Remitly will refund your money.

How to pay using Alipay in Singapore

What is Alipay: woman wearing a sunhat, looking at Singapore City's buildings

Since Singapore is moving toward a cash-free future, digital payments like Alipay are becoming more common.

Alipay is offered by some merchants throughout Singapore, particularly in areas where Chinese tourists and residents frequently visit.

Alipay is now available to both Chinese nationals and foreign customers. If you’ve never used Alipay before, you can download the app, enter your information, and link your bank details. Alipay will now work with foreign bank accounts, as well as major credit cards like Mastercard and Visa.

When you’re ready to pay for your purchases at a grocery store, retail shop, or restaurant, look for the Alipay logo and pay using a contact-free option, such as QR code scanning.

Other international retailers, including those in the U.S. and the U.K., have also started to accept Alipay, which simplifies the checkout process by reducing language and payment barriers.

If you want to send money to Alipay, Remitly makes mobile payments simple and secure. Our excellent exchange rates mean you will get the most out of your money, too.

What is Alipay: woman at a rooftop checking her phone

Send money to Alipay with Remitly

Established by Alibaba Group, Alipay’s explosive growth is a testament to the quality of this payment solution. In China, it has become so common to use digital payments that many people prefer them over cash or cards. Now that you know what Alipay is, you can see how it makes it easy to pay for e-commerce goods in China, even if you’re just visiting.

Apps like Alipay also make it easy for Chinese nationals who live overseas to send money directly into the e-wallets of friends, family, and associates.

Now more than ever, you want to support your family back home, and Remitly is here to help. With the Remitly app, you can send funds in minutes to Alipay and track your transfer every step of the way.