Alipay for foreigners: how to create an account?

Thomas Graziani New WeChat features

Update: this guide was initially published on the 8th of February 2015. We updated it on the 7th March 2017 to reflect changes in the registration process. Thank you to Alipay for providing guidance on the new registration process.

It is not exactly a WeChat related topic, but following popular demand, we will show you the application process on Alipay for foreigners. You will need to read some basic Chinese to navigate through the Alipay website.

What can you use Alipay for?

  • Shop on most of Chinese website, including Taobao and Tmall
  • Transfer money to your friends
  • Pay credit card bills
  • Pay phone bills
  • Go Dutch
  • Get a taxi
  • Invest in mutual fund with Alibaba
  • Check bank balance
  • In-store purchase for selected supermarket, restaurants and vending machines

Before you apply

Have the following ready:

  • Your passport number
  • Chinese phone number
  • Chinese bank account

How to create an account?

1. Download the Alipay APP

You can do so by following this link and clicking “立即下载” (or by looking for it in your favorite APP store):

You can sign up simply with your phone number

2. Open the “Me” section of the APP


3. Enter the “My Account: Cards, Membership” section


4. Tap on the “My Cards – Add Now” button


5. Set a six digit payment password


6. Tap on “My Cards – Add Now” again

7. Add your bank card number after entering the transaction password that you have set during step 5



8. Fill your bank card information

Make sure to enter your name exactly the way it is displayed in your bank statements.

Enter your ID details:

  • For foreign nationals- Select Passport as ID type
  • For HK and Taiwan users- Use Home visit Permit as ID type


9. Enter the SMS phone verification confirmation code

alipay-78And that’s it, you’re done!

Shop on Taobao!

You can use your Alipay account to login to Taobao.

9 (2)

  1. Go to
  2. Create your Taobao user name.
  3. During checkout, select pay with your Alipay account.


For some users, you might be required to verify your account in order to start shopping. You can learn how to do so through the following link.

Congratulations! Now you are the proud owner of an Alipay account.
Happy shopping from WalktheChat team.

If you need to have the complete payment experience, here to an article we wrote about how to create WeChat Pay account.

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