How we help businesses connect with China

Local businesses are finding new ways to connect with Chinese visitors and residents through digital platforms and mobile payment options like Alipay and WeChat.

To celebrate Golden Week – a Chinese national holiday that runs from 1 to 7 October – we’re showcasing some unique ways we help businesses connect with China.

1. Digital payment options
Buskers can now accept digital donations by using Alipay, the world’s largest mobile payment provider. City visitors can also use Alipay and WeChat Pay at Cooks’ Cottage and Fitzroy Gardens Visitor Centre.

2. Special offers for shoppers
Businesses in key retail precincts are now able to provide shoppers with special offers through our new Melbourne City Card program on Alipay.

3. Social media
We are the only Australian capital city on WeChat, China’s leading social media platform. Our WeChat channel has more than 10,000 followers, and our stories have been viewed more than 330,000 times.

4. Helping city visitors explore more of Melbourne
Visitors are invited to explore 10 iconic locations in our city to receive a special memento through our new ‘Check-in Melbourne’ mini program on WeChat.

5. Business missions
We unlock global opportunities for local startups through business missions to Asia. Read about the Lord Mayor’s latest trip.

Alipay in action
The Melbourne Star Observation Wheel began offering Alipay as a payment method to support an increasing number of Chinese visitors.

The team has seen significant growth in the use of Alipay at their attraction, cafe and retail store, and believe this will continue to grow.

Sales Manager Stone Liu said nearly 10,000 visitors have collected a coupon offering a discount through Alipay.

‘Alipay is a cost-efficient way to expose your business into the Chinese market. Not only does it facilitate payment between consumers from China and the local business, but there is also marketing on the platform,’ Stone said.

‘You need to have attractive products and discount coupons at the right time to attract more visitation.’

Councillor Philip Le Liu, Chair of the International Engagement portfolio, said he is encouraged to see businesses embracing payment options preferred by Victoria’s more than 650,000 annual Chinese visitors.

‘As a City of Progress, we are dedicated to promoting Melbourne as a destination of choice for tourists, and supporting our city’s visitor economy through innovative projects in this time of disruption,’ Cr Le Liu said.

‘I encourage all local businesses seeking ways to better engage with Chinese customers to view the handy new checklist we’ve published on our website.’

To find out more, visit Business.