The Beijing Municipal Commission of Transport has officially launched its "Yitongxing" online subway ticketing platform, with the airport line being the first to pilot the new service.
From August 20 onwards, users can download the Yitongxing app, and within the app create an account. The account can be funded via third-party payment services Alipay and JD Pay, or an online payment account at Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC).
After making online purchases of one-way airport line tickets, users can head to designated ticket machines at their chosen departure station to scan a QR code, collect their tickets, and board the train. From September 20 onwards, user will be able to directly scan the QR code within the app to enter and exit the station.
In addition, beginning on September 1, twenty of the busiest subway stations will open online ticket purchase and offline ticket collection functionality. It is estimated that by the first quarter of 2018, the entire Beijing subway network will be equipped to handle QR code scanning to enter and exit subway stations.
Editor's Note: Beijing's subway system also recently began support for Near Field Communication (NFC)-based mobile payment of subway fares. For more background, please see Beijing Subway Launches Support for NFC Payments across All Subway Lines, MD 8/14/17 issue.