WeChat and WeChat Wallet: Complete Guide (Updated 14/11/2018)

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With the ever evolving technology and mobility in the world, payment options have become less time consuming. WeChat and AliPay are the leading mobile payment methods in China with more than 600,000 million and 400,000 million users every month respectively. WECHAT PAY Aside from being the biggest social media platform, WeChat is also one of the most wide-spread payment methods accepted in China. It’s not only a place to stay connected with friends or colleagues and post pictures, but you can also enjoy the benefits of the complete online banking ecosystem that WeChat offers. Whether you shop at the small market near your house or the supermarket in the city, take a regular taxi or call DiDi, pay for your food at the restaurant or the shipping company- you can use WeChat Pay! WeChat Pay will save you from many headaches. You will be able to easily: -Send/Receive money from/to anybody with a WeChat account; easily split a restaurant bill, give money, pay for services. -Pay your phone bill online, no need to look for an open supermarket in the middle of the cold and rainy night if you forget to pay your mobile bill. Go to Me -> Wallet -> Mobile Top up Write the phone number you want to charge and select the amount you want to charge from the suggested options. -Ordering a Taxi online: you may try to hail a taxi for a VERY long time outside, but someone E-hailing with their phone will get the car first. Once you get your SIM card (complete guide here) and open a bank account (complete guide here) you can easily activate the WeChat Pay option in your phone. How does it work? In WeChat go to Me -> Wallet ->Add a Card -> input your bank card number, and your name exactly as it is written at the bank. in ID field: choose passport; input your passport number, then your phone number, which is linked to your bank account. Finish by entering the security code received on your mobile. WeChat will then ask you for a password. This is not your bank card pin code, but a password for WeChat payments only. Congratulations! Your bank card is registered and now you can enjoy your WeChat Wallet. You could test if it is working by making a generous donation to the tianjinexpats account on WeChat… ;-) (or not) RED PACKET OR HONGBAOS WeChat offers the option to send a Red Packet with a certain amount of money to a person or group. The maximum amount you can send is 200RMB. This feature is based on the Chinese tradition of exchanging red envelopes (normally with cash) during special occasions or holidays. When you open a red packet the money will be transferred to your WeChat Wallet. If sent to a group, a specified number of people will get random amounts of money. WECHAT TRANSFERS After your WeChat Wallet is activated you can make money transfers to your friends. The transferred money will be saved in your WeChat Wallet. You can easily withdraw the money from WeChat Wallet or transfer it to your debit card. The first 1000-yuan withdrawal is free of charge, but after that each withdrawal of more than 1000 yuan is charged a 0.1 percent fee. You can control the transfer time in the Payment Management section. Your transfer can be done immediately, in 2 hours or 24 hours. Some of the apps which are connected to your WeChat may directly deduct the amount of money without asking for confirmation. For example, after using DiDi you don’t have to worry about confirming the transfer, as the Auto-deduct function in WeChat will automatically pay for you. Make sure this option is on for trusted apps only. Can you link 2 or more bank cards to your WeChat? Yes! But your personal information has to be the same on all cards. Can you pay abroad using WeChat? NO! When planning your trips, please, remember that you cannot use WeChat or AliPay payment options when abroad. They work only in China! Even when you try to buy tickets online and pay in USD or RMB, the system will not allow your transaction if you are outside of China. IMPORTANT If you install/register WeChat from abroad, you won't have access to the WeChat Wallet option. DO NOT download WeChat again after arriving in China in order to activate it (you will lose all your contacts and chat history, plus you may trigger the WeChat fraud service). Just ask a friend or colleague to send you a red packet, or a small amount of money. Upon reception of that money, WeChat will pop-up an ID verification page. Choose the first link in green (verification with bank ID). Then follow the instructions to activate your wallet. For people who registered their WeChat from abroad (out of China), do not forget to change your phone number when you get your new Chinese phone number. If you lose your phone you may be able to recover your account via SMS. YOUR ACCOUNT If your WeChat has been set up with a Chinese phone number, you won’t be able to join groups of more than 100 people without activating your Wallet. If you set up your account with a foreign number, then there is no issue. The security of your account is necessary in order to have secure financial management on WeChat. So pay attention to the following details: ● If you change your phone number, make sure you update that information on WeChat as well. ● Do not forget to set up your Emergency Contacts in the Account security section to recover your account if needed. ● You can activate email verification in order to access your account if your mobile number is not available for any reason. Go to >More Settings >Email verification. When you link your email, WeChat will send you a confirmation email which will automatically link your email address. ● If you are changing your banking ID, make sure your wallet is emptied and all bank cards removed prior making any changes. You can use WeChat to transfer money to other people’s bank account directly (click here for more info), but please note that the length of the maximum characters for the payee name is 20, so if the name has more than 20 characters, you won’t be able to send money to that person. SHARING A WECHAT WALLET WITH FAMILY: YOU SPEND, I PAY. Now you can let your child, wife, or parents use the same WeChat wallet as you and give them a monthly maximum payment limit. Go to wallet > Pay Center > Relative cards. NEW ANTI-LAUNDRY AND TAX EVASION SAFETY: The annual limit of cumulative transactions per person is 200.000 Yuan on WeChat. If you reach the limit you will not be able to pay from your WeChat Wallet, but will have to transfer the money to your bank account before making payments through WeChat. For Chinese ID card holders, WeChat offers WeBank accounts, which are established by Tencent. The funds will be automatically transferred to the WeBank account from Balance. Enjoy the benefits of WeChat Pay knowing the small details and let us know if you have any questions!


WECHAT WALLET

COMPLETE GUIDE

FIRST THINGS FIRST: WECHAT WALLET

Article written and verified the 14 November 2018.



NO WALLET?

If you install/register WeChat from abroad, you won't have access to the WeChat Wallet option.

DO NOT download WeChat again after arriving in China in order to activate it (you will lose all your contacts and chat history, plus you may trigger the WeChat fraud service).

Just ask a friend or colleague to send you a red packet, or a small amount of money.

Upon reception of that money, WeChat will pop-up an ID verification page.


Choose the first link in green (verification with bank ID). Then follow the instructions to activate your wallet.


For people who registered their WeChat from abroad (out of China), do not forget to change your phone number when you get your new Chinese phone number. If you lose your phone you may be able to recover your account via SMS.


WHY USE WECHAT PAY

Aside from being the biggest social media platform, WeChat is also one of the most wide-spread payment methods accepted in China. It’s not only a place to stay connected with friends or colleagues and post pictures, but you can also enjoy the benefits of the complete online banking ecosystem that WeChat offers. Whether you shop at the small market near your house or the supermarket in the city, take a regular taxi or call DiDi, pay for your food at the restaurant or the shipping company- you can use WeChat Pay!


WeChat Pay will save you from many headaches. You will be able to easily:

-Join group chat of over 100 people.

-Send/Receive money from/to anybody with a WeChat account; easily split a restaurant bill, give money, pay for services.

-Arrange bank transfer: View our complete article here

-Pay your phone bill online, no need to look for an open supermarket in the middle of the cold and rainy night if you forget to pay your mobile bill.

Go to Me -> Wallet -> Mobile Top up
Write the phone number you want to charge and select the amount you want to charge from the suggested options.

-Ordering a Taxi online: you may try to hail a taxi for a VERY long time outside, but someone E-hailing with their phone will get the car first.


Once you get your SIM card (complete guide here) and open a bank account (complete guide here) you can easily activate the WeChat Pay option in your phone. How does it work?


In WeChat go to Me -> Wallet ->Add a Card -> input your bank card number,
and your name exactly as it is written at the bank.


In ID field: choose passport; input your passport number, then your phone number, which is linked to your bank account.


Finish by entering the security code received on your mobile.


WeChat will then ask you for a password. This is not your bank card pin code, but a password for WeChat payments only.



Congratulations! Your bank card is registered and now you can enjoy your WeChat Wallet. You could test if it is working by making a generous donation to the tianjinexpats account on WeChat… ;-) (or not)


Can you link 2 or more bank cards to your WeChat? Yes! But your personal information has to be the same on all cards. (name writing and passport number shall be the same, phone numbers can differs)


RED PACKET OR HONGBAOS

WeChat offers the option to send a Red Packet with a certain amount of money to a person or group. The maximum amount you can send is 200RMB. This feature is based on the Chinese tradition of exchanging red envelopes (normally with cash) during special occasions or holidays. When you open a red packet the money will be transferred to your WeChat Wallet. If sent to a group, a specified number of people will get random amounts of money.


SENDING MONEY

After your WeChat Wallet is activated you can make money transfers to your friends. The transferred money will be saved in your WeChat Wallet. You can easily withdraw the money from WeChat Wallet or transfer it to your debit card. The first 1000-yuan withdrawal is free of charge, but after that each withdrawal of more than 1000 yuan is charged a 0.1 percent fee.



SECURITY TIPS

Me -> Wallet -> ... -> Payment Security -> Manage Payement

Transfer time:

You can control the transfer time in the Payment Management section. Your transfer can be done immediately, in 2 hours or 24 hours. Important: setting transfer time to 24 hours won't give you the option to cancel it within the 24 hours if you got the feeling the the receiver is scamming you. But will give you time to report it to Wechat and police, so Wechat may cancel the transfer. Do not think you are protected by the 24 hours waiting time, money will go to receiver if you don't report to police.


Auto-deduct:

Some of the apps which are connected to your WeChat may directly deduct the amount of money without asking for confirmation. For example, after using DiDi you don’t have to worry about confirming the transfer, as the Auto-deduct function in WeChat will automatically pay for you. Make sure this option is on for trusted apps only.



INTERNATIONAL

Can you pay abroad using WeChat? NO! Unless your bank account is linked with a Chinese ID card.

 

Transaction in currencies other than RMB are not available to foreigners anymore, so you can't pay abroad, or services on internet when the receiver is not a Chinese vendor.

 

When planning your trips, please, remember that you cannot use WeChat or Alipay payment options when abroad anymore. Only Chinese citizens can



SAFETY FIRST

Real name verification is necessary to join group chats of more than 100 people. Linking a Chinese bank card will activate your wallet and give you the real name authentification.


*foreign account do not have group chat limitations (account created with foreign mobile phone number)


Please pay attention to the following details in order to have a safe experince


●If you change your phone number, make sure you update that information on WeChat as well. Old phone numbers are sold back after a few month, so somebody could stole your wechat account with sms verification.

Me -> Setting -> Account Security -> Phone

 

●Do not forget to set up your Emergency Contacts in the Account security section to unlock your account if needed.

Me -> Setting -> Account Security -> Emergency

 

●You can activate email verification in order to access your account if your mobile number is not available or you are in the process of changing countries. When you link your email, WeChat will send you a confirmation email which will automatically link your email address.

Me -> Settings -> Account Security -> More settings

 

●If you are planning to change your banking informations, make sure your wallet is emptied and all bank cards removed prior making any changes.



FAMILY SHARED WALLET

Now you can let your child, wife, or parents use the same WeChat wallet as you and give them a monthly maximum payment limit.

Wallet > Pay Center > Relative cards.



ANTI FRAUD LIMITATIONS

The annual limit of cumulative transactions per person is 200.000 rmb (they can calculate amounts of your different wechat account with your linked bank ID)

If you reach the limit you will not be able to pay from your WeChat Wallet, but will have to transfer the money bank to your bank account (0.1% fees) before making payments through WeChat.

For Chinese ID card holders, WeChat offers WeBank accounts, which are established by Tencent. The funds will be automatically transferred to the WeBank account from Balance.


THANK YOU

Enjoy the benefits of WeChat Pay knowing the small details and let us know if you have any questions, using the comment function


 

The author

Relocation from one country to another is a lot of trouble and TianjinExpat and FoxRelocation are here to help, We are launching a new series of articles to introduce the very simple, yet important steps everyone has to go through when moving to Tianjin.

I hope the article was useful and in case you need a professional assistance, a tailored relocation solution is available to suit your specific needs. Contact me for more information: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

—— 《Jessie》

 

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