Alipay has begun charging service fees for credit card balance payments. For payments under 2000 yuan, it’s still free of charge, but when exceeding 2000 Yuan, a service fee of 0.01% is charged.
For example, if a user repays a credit card balance of 10,000 Yuan by Alipay, after deducting the free-of-charge amount, an additional 8 Yuan will be charged as a service fee.
The free repayment amount of 2000 Yuan is issued according to the natural month, i.e. 00:00 on the first day of each month, and the unused free repayment amount is cleared at 23:59:59 on the last day of each month.
It is worth mentioning, that any remaining free repayment amount does not transfer to a new month, and a user can upgrade the amount by spending Alipay membership points.
Why Did Alipay Start Charging a Fee?
In fact, as early as last July, WeChat Pay announced that starting August 1st, every credit card repayment via Wechat would be charged a service fee of 0.1%.
With regard to the above fee standards, Wechat explained that there was actually a payment channel fee behind every repayment. In order to enable users to enjoy part of the free product experience, Tenpay had been investing in fee subsidies. However, in past years, with the rapid development of the credit card repayment business, the cost of channel charges had begun to rise.
Similar to WeChat, Alipay also explained in February 21st 2019, that the reason for the charge was “the rapid increase in the cost of comprehensive operation”.
The Difference of Using WeChat VS Alipay for Credit Card Payments
How to Pay Off a Credit Card, Free of Charge
There are various channels of credit card repayment, among which, some are free:
On Alipay Hong Kong, if a user wants to repay more than 2000 Yuan to his credit card for free, he can either convert his Alipay membership points to extend the free amount, or use another person’s Alipay account with an unused free repayment amount.
2. Internet Banking and Mobile Banking Apps
It is free for a user to repay his credit card by using online banking or the Bank’s phone app. In addition, the applications of many banks including China Merchants Bank, China Construction Bank and China Guangfa Bank also provide a free service for the repayment of credit cards for other banks.
Credit card repayment can also be done via UnionPay, and it is free of charge.
4. Other platforms
The JD Finance app is also an option. Currently it is completely free for credit card repayments and its interface is similar to that of Alipay.
It also supports other functions including a credit card bill inquiry.
Furthermore, according to the FAQ of Finance SN, it is free to repay credit cards via their platform and currently, it supports 45 mainstream bank credit cards.
51 NB said that on their platform the amount of free repayment limit is 20,000 Yuan. In addition, users who set automatic repayment through a savings card reservation can enjoy free repayment services.