User Guide: Alipay
No idea how to make an online payment in China? Don’t sweat it, we’ve all been there.
What is Alipay?
Imagine PayPal; now imagine it entirely in Chinese. Now, just for fun, imagine there are about a bazillion passwords and verification
codes to complicate things further. That’s Alipay. But what makes it unique is its third party status; only transferring money to the seller
once the customer has accepted, and is satisfied with, the purchased product.
It can be a little arduous setting up an account but this guide should see you through. We've split it into three parts:
Part 1 will take you through creating an account, Part 2 will show you how to add money, and Part 3 will deal with actually
buying something from the NewX store.
Also note, in order to add money to your account, banks require you to tie your card to an online account and phone number.
It shouldn’t take too long, so go down to your local branch to do it. We’ll wait here. Back? Good, now let’s get started!
Part 1: Creating your Account
Step 1: Sign Up
Follow this link to get to the sign up page. You will see a drop down box with the words 中国大陆 (Chinese Mainland) written in it.
Click it, then select your home country. They've finally added English translations, so this step should be easy. If you can't find your
home country, then you can't create an Alipay account.... Just kidding!! Select any country, it doesn't really make a difference.
Next, fill in the two fields. Put your email address in the first, and assuming you’re not an evil cyber robot, fill out the code beneath
before clicking the orange tab to continue.
Step 2: You've Got Mail!
A message will pop up telling you they have sent a confirmation link to your email address that will remain active for 24 hours.
Go to your mail box and click the link to validate your email.
Step 3: Enter Your Phone Number and Code
This won’t be the last time you will have to mess about with your phone. To start with, select 中国大陆 to tell Alipay you have a
Chinese phone number. Enter your phone number into the field below, then hit continue.
Alipay should have sent a 6 digit code to you by SMS. Check your phone and enter it into the empty field and continue.
Note, the code can take a few moments to arrive.
Step 4: They Know Where You live!
Pretty standard form-filling stuff really. The first field requires you to create an account password. Remember it must be 6-20 letters, and have
one lower case letter and one uppercase letter/number/character. Retype it in the next field. Next you must create your payment password –
it is very important for the future that you remember the difference between your payment and account password. Enter it in the field, and
retype it into the next field.
The third section is a security question. The first choice on the drop down box is your father’s name, and the second is your mother’s
name. To avoid later confusion, probably best opt for one of these.
Finally, they need to know about you. Fill in your name, gender (男- man 女- woman,) Job (it makes no difference so just pick the top
option from the drop down box) and your address.
A recent change at Alipay requires new users to provide an official ID. So you will have to enter an ID type, and the ID number. As a
foreigner in China though, you're probably going to have to use your passport, so just select the second option from the dropdown
box - 护照, then enter your passport number in the box below. If all is in order, hit the orange button.
Step 5: Account Created! <3
You finally have an Alipay account. Good going! Virtual high five!!
Part 2: Add Money
Step 1: Navigate your home screen
So now that you are the proud owner of your very own active Alipay account, I'll show you how to navigate a bit. First step: go to Alipay.com.
If it's your first time visiting, you'll notice that you can't really log in, because it won't allow you to enter a password.
If you click on the box where you should enter your password, it will prompt you to download a security applet. If you want to use Alipay, you
have no choice but to accept, so install the applet.
Once everything is installed, try the page again and you should be able to log in using the credentials you created earlier.
Hurray!! Now, this is your homepage. We need to add money to our account. So click the grey button next to your balance. The one that says: ‘充值’.
Step 2: Select Your Bank
It gets a little tricky here. So pay attention. This screen shows you a list of banks, but you can't us this list. This list is for people with a
Chinese ID card. If you're reading this, you obviously don't have one. So what you have to do is click the little blue text that says: 选择其他.
This will bring up a second list of banks that you can choose from. It will look like this:
Pick your bank, then click continue.
Step 3: Select your Amount
Now, see that empty field? Fill it with how much you want to add, then click the orange tab. Whatever you do, DO NOT check the check box.
It's to setup some extra feature that you can't setup because you're not Chinese.
Step 4: Fill Out your Bank Info
This may be a little tricky. While some banks provide English translations, the majority will leave you to fend for yourself. Bank of China
is a relatively painless option; though the website is Chinese-only and we had to provide a phone number when we initially signed up.
Most banks will give you different methods of paying. Generally there is a simple option, and a more secure option. The simpler option
usually involves your bank card and your phone, the more secure option usually requires a special USB security key from your bank.
Since I'm with Bank of China, I'll show you what's what using their service. On this first Bank of China screen, you will notice that you can
choose between 2 different payment methods, one shows a phone, the other shows a shield. Guess which one is the simpler option?
The one with the phone.
By clicking this option, you can add a limited amount of money to your account (a maximum of 1,000) with only an SMS confirmation, and your
bank card number. If you use the other method, the one with the shield, you need to have your bank's USB security key, and you can add a
nearly unlimited amount of money to your Alipay account.
I will be showing you the simpler method, so click the button with the phone (the top one).
Now enter your bank card number, as well as the 4 last digits of your cell phone number (the one you registered with the bank), enter the
captcha code, and click the red button.
Step 5: Phone Number
Once you've entered your info, click on the button next to the little key and wait until you receive a code on your phone, via SMS.
Step 6: Enter Your Code
Last hurdle now. A box will appear telling you a password has been sent to your phone. Check your phone and fill in the empty field.
Note, it can take a few minutes.
Step 7: Big Tick!
Wait a moment for the payment to go through. If everything is fine and dandy, then you will be rewarded with a nice big shiny tick, or a thumbs
up, or smiley face… or whatever it is your bank uses to tell you that you done good. Either wait a few seconds or click on the continue tab to
return to Alipay.
Step 8: You’re Rich!
Beautiful isn’t it? A whole 200 rmb in our account. We gotta admit, we’re pretty stoked. Let’s go to Part 3 and learn how to spend it.
Part 3: Making a Purchase
Step 1: Your Selection
So now you have your nose stuck in the NewX catalogue looking for that perfect piece. Well hello there beautiful dining chair, what’s
a pretty thing like you doing in a place like this? Hit add to cart.
Step 2: Review Your Cart
Review your chair and any other beauties you couldn’t resist bringing home with you here. If you’re happy, go to Checkout.
Step 3: Tell Us Your Info
If we don't know where you live, we can't send you awesome stuff. So check and double check that you filled out everything right (or
create an account to make this process much quicker.) Importantly for this guide, choose ‘Alipay’ as your payment method on the
right-hand side of the screen. Scroll to the bottom and click ‘Place Order’ to… well, place your order.
Step 4: Fill In Your Alipay Info
You should now be taken to the Alipay payment page. You just need to fill in the field on the left side of the screen, so in the first
one type in your Account Login details (your email address) and in the second field your payment password (NOT your account
password.) Fill in the code and head on.
Step 5: Payment Password… Again!
This is the final time you will have to use it, I swear. Just below the tick in the green circle is an empty field, so again fill it in with
your payment password. Hit the orange tab annnnd…
Step 6: Bingo!
The green tick of success! Glorious, eh? You’ve just made your first purchase on Alipay. We’d give you a badge but we don’t want
to embarrass you. Wait a couple of seconds and you will be taken back to our website.
Step 7: Have a Cup of Tea
Could you make us one too? It’s been a tiring journey. Check your mailbox for your conformation email, and don’t forget you can
check the progress of your purchase any time by clicking on ‘Account.’ Now, you got any biscuits at all?