Chinese internet giant Tencent made it more convenient for overseas travellers in China to register for a WeChat Pay account and link international credit cards to its mobile payment platform.

In a statement, Tencent explained it simplified the registration process for tourists, which can sign up for an account with an overseas mobile number and standard card details to link an to eligible international credit card with WeChat Pay.

Tencent stated it also is looking to add interoperability with more overseas e-wallets to improve the payment experience for visitors.

The move is an important step as the government pushes to attract international tourists, but most local retailers don’t accept cash or overseas credit cards as mobile payments are used for the vast majority of transactions. 

The company noted the simplified card linking process allows international visitors to spend up to a certain amount “safely and conveniently”.

Visitors wanting a higher transaction limit can complete the identity verification process by submitting relevant information, noting passport verification takes only seconds. It recently increased the single transaction limit for verified international users from $1,000 to $5,000 and annual limit from $10,000 to $50,000.

The company said after its merchant network was fully opened in July 2023, the average daily transaction volume of WeChat Pay’s international card service increased more than three times and the average daily transactions increased fourfold.