UnionPay International Elevates Experience for China-Bound South Korean Tourists with its "Excellence 2024" Initiative

2024-04-23 12:03 1669

With an eye on deep cultural exploration, South Korean travelers can embrace local experiences in China, supported by UnionPay's payment innovations

SHANGHAI, April 23, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Since the start of the year, there has been a significant uptick in travel from South Korea to China, showcasing a shift towards seeking authentic cultural experiences rather than traditional leisure vacations.

In January alone, travel to China by Koreans surged by 908% year-over-year, with destinations like Hunan's Zhangjiajie becoming favorites. The first South Korean-born giant panda "Fu Bao", who recently returned to Sichuan's Wolong Nature Reserve, has also captured the hearts of many.

To accommodate the rising wave of South Korean visitors and enhance the travel experience, UnionPay International initiated "Excellence 2024" in March, aiming to provide a more convenient, diverse payment system and wider acceptance across China.

Currently, more than 50 million UnionPay cards have been issued in South Korea, covering all local banks. Additionally, twelve institutions, including Naver Pay, Hana Pay, KB Pay, BC Paybooc and shinhan Solpay, have introduced UnionPay standard electronic wallets, becoming the preferred option for Koreans traveling abroad, especially to China.

The first quarter showed a dramatic increase in the usage of UnionPay's payment products in China, among which QR Code payments experiencing more than a 36-fold rise in transaction volume and amount.

"Excellence 2024" marks the beginning of UnionPay's three-billion-yuan investment to enhance payment solutions in China, covering card swiping, QR scanning, mobile Pay, and ATM withdrawals across 41 key cities in China. 

The program's annual discount activities are already underway in 12 cities, including Shanghai, Hangzhou, Fuzhou, Guangzhou, Haikou, Chongqing, Chengdu, Kunming, Xi'an, Shenzhen, Dalian, and Qingdao. South Korean cardholders can easily access discount activities and embrace local experiences through the "U.plan" mini-program via the UnionPay app, selecting "Mainland China" for local discounts and experiences.

"UnionPay has been deeply rooted in the Korean market for many years, and continues to offer high-quality payment solutions, facilitating personal and economic exchanges between South Korea and China," stated Mr. Lee Myung-ho, General Manager of UnionPay International South Korea Branch. "Embracing the mobile payment trend, we've expanded cooperation with major Korean institutions to introduce UnionPay wallets and achieve global cross-border usability. Moving forward, UnionPay will capitalize on its innovation leadership and global network to enhance payment services for Koreans, both domestically and internationally."

About UnionPay International

As an internationally recognized card organization, UnionPay International's network spans 183 countries and regions, with over 230 million UnionPay cards issued outside of mainland China. The company has been at the forefront of digital payment innovation, launching nearly 200 cooperative wallets worldwide, ensuring that UnionPay remains the preferred choice for global citizens visiting China.

Source: UnionPay International