Global hospitality company InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) today said it has signed a global partnership with China’s leading third-party online payment solutions company Alipay.
IHG has become the first global hotel company to give Chinese guests the ability to pay via Alipay through all of the hospitality group’s online and mobile channels, as well as across its full estate of hotels globally.
The new partnership, which has been agreed with Alipay’s parent company Ant Financial, will initially apply to IHG’s existing estate of over 270 hotels in Greater China, as well as a number of hotels around the world that participate in IHG’s China Ready Programme.
The global rollout of Alipay will begin in 2017.
“IHG has always been a leader in providing advanced payment solutions to guests through our direct booking channels. We are thrilled to be partnering with Alipay to strengthen our ever-evolving travel experience for our guests globally,” IHG Chief Commercial Officer Keith Barr said.
The partnership will allow IHG to further capitalise on the significant increase in Chinese outbound travel.
According to IHG’s Future of Chinese Travel Report published in 2015, nearly 90 million Chinese households will be able to travel overseas by 2023, fuelled by a growing middle class and increasing propensity to travel.
IHG, which has franchises, leases, manages or owns over 5,000 hotels in almost 100 countries and have more than 1,400 hotels in its development pipeline.
Besides, it has a broad portfolio of hotel brands, including InterContinental Hotels & Resorts, Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants, HUALUXE Hotels and Resorts, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts, Hotel Indigo, among others.