UK. Heathrow Airport has become the first UK airport to offer Chinese mobile payment platform WeChat Pay, following an agreement between SafeCharge and Dufry-owned travel retailer World Duty Free,

Chinese shoppers can now procure goods using the QR code-based WeChat Pay e-wallet payment system at points of sale.

SafeCharge’s mobile POS application, adopted by World Duty Free, allows retailers to accept QR code-based payment methods.

World Duty Free enjoys strong business at Heathrow Airport with Chinese travellers, as reflected here in the digital signage for its ‘new-generation’ store recently opened at Terminal 3.

World Duty Free UK Financial Controller Tony O’Donnell said, “Since the initial roll-out in Terminal 4 we have seen a steady increase in transaction volumes and are currently in the process of extending this capability across the other Heathrow terminals.

“SafeCharge has been instrumental in supporting our fast deployment with high-level quality support and we look forward to working closely with the team as we continue to expand across more locations and concessions.”

“Chinese shoppers are among the most tech-savvy in the world, and take the ability to go cashless and make mobile payments at home for granted.”  – SafeCharge CEO David Avgi. [Image: SafeCharge]

According to VisitBritain, over 330,000 Chinese travellers visited the UK last year, injecting over £1 billion (US$1.29 billion) into the economy.

WeChat also offers a range of online marketing opportunities to increase interaction with consumers, via coupons, cash-back promotions and other features.

Brands such as Estée Lauder have geared up their efforts to engage with Chinese shoppers at Heathrow. [Image: World Duty Free]

The SafeCharge Point of Sale app is a downloadable application downloadable available for both iOS and Android devices. Using an intuitive interface, it connects to the SafeCharge payments engine, allowing merchants to generate a QR code either on the seller’s side, or a scanning one on the buyer’s device. The app requires no technical integration and provides a frictionless tap-and-go shopping experience for customers.

“Chinese shoppers are among the most tech-savvy in the world, and take the ability to go cashless and make mobile payments at home for granted,” said SafeCharge CEO David Avgi.

Flying high: Over 330,000 Chinese travellers visited the UK last year, injecting over £1 billion (US$1.29 billion) into the economy.

“With Chinese tourism growing at a +20% rate every year, it has become vital for merchants to adapt to offer these valued customers the service and experience that they expect – and that means accepting Chinese alternative payment methods whether online, in their shops, pop-up stores or outdoor markets in order to remain competitive.

“Our new SafeCharge Point of Sale App has been developed to help businesses serve an increasing number of customers who normally default to QR code-based payments methods, for a better shopping experience and increased revenues.”

SafeCharge International provides an array of global omni-channel payments services from card acquiring and issuing to payment processing and checkout, all underpinned by risk management solutions.

The proprietary payment platform connects directly to all major payment card schemes including Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Union Pay as well as over 150 local payment methods. The company has been listed on the London Stock Exchange AIM market since 2014.