Guangzhou-based public transport card operator Yangchengtong, the Guangzhou Public Transportation Data Center, and Chinese internet and mobile services firm Tencent (0700.HK) recently launched a new service allowing users to pay public bus tickets using Tencent's WeChat mobile messenger. The service, which only covers certain bus rapid transit (BRT) stations in Guangzhou, is expected to be available for users to try out by the end of August after improvements to the BRT lines and related equipment in Nansha District.
The Yangchengtong QR codes can be used with the Yangchengtong app or by logging in to the "Tencent Chengchema" (Tencent Travel Code) applet within WeChat. City residents can open the app or applet and follow on-screen prompts to generate a QR scan code, which can be used at a BRT platform gate or onboard electronic payment terminal scanning module to complete payment. After an initial configuration, users can use the service for subsequent rides by simply opening their phone and scanning the code.
On July 27, the Shenzhen B683, 12, 17, 213, and No. 4 bus lines added support for mobile payments using rival Chinese third-party payment processor Alipay for 78 buses. By the end of the year, the service is expected to reach all buses throughout Shenzhen. In April 2017, Guangzhou Yangchengtong Company signed a partnership agreement with Alipay to support integration of Guangzhou public transportation cards with the service. Alipay is operated by Ant Financial, the financial services affiliate of Chinese e-commerce conglomerate Alibaba Group (NYSE: BABA).
For more information on this topic, please see "Alipay to Support Integration of Guangzhou Public Transport Card," MD 4/24/17 issue.