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Global Blue rolls out ‘real-time refunds'

Global Blue has unveiled plans to roll out real-time refunds to Alipay and WeChat accounts worldwide, following successful trials.

The tax-free shopping company said it has extended the service from selected airports across Europe to more than 700 refund points worldwide. It said the refund options would offer more choice and flexibility to travelling Chinese shoppers, who will be able to get refunds instantly within their Alipay or WeChat accounts.

The extension of the digital wallet refund service follows a successful launch in 2017, which made Global Blue the first tax-free shopping provider to offer mobile payment refund options.

This real-time benefit has received positive feedback from Chinese shoppers and has led to “high acceptance since launch,” Global Blue said.

WeChat has around one billion active users and Alipay, a related company of Alibaba, more than 520m active users in China.

Tomas Mostany, Global Blue’s SVP Product TFS said: “With millions of active users per month, Alipay and WeChat represent together an increasingly important payment channel outside China, and we are confident the service will become even more popular among Chinese shoppers. We have built strong relationships with these key partners and we look forward to collaborating on new innovations that will continue to better serve Chinese Globe Shoppers.”

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