3 cross-border payment methods of Octopus

Editor︰Huang Yayan

To facilitate Hong Kong residents to consume in the Mainland, Octopus announced that it will launch the "Octopus – China T-Union Card" at the end of March.

With the purchase of a physical card, you could travel on public transportation tools, including metro and buses, in over 320 cities in the Mainland.

Octopus has been extending its electronic payment service in Mainland China in recent years, which makes e-payment available for shopping as well. Now let's see where the Octopus card can be used in the Mainland?

Octopus China T-Union Card connected to bus system

The Octopus – China T-Union Card will provide great convenience to Hong Kong residents traveling to the Mainland. (Image source: Getty)

Octopus announced that it will launch the "China T-Union Card" in March, which is a non-registered physical card. It will be topped up in Hong Kong dollars and paid in CNY.

In Hong Kong, the "China T-Union Card" can be used like a regular Octopus card for rides, shopping, etc.

In the Mainland, the "China T-Union Card" can be used on public transportation, such as metro and buses, in over 320 cities including the 9 cities in the GBA, making it more convenient for Hong Kong people to get around.

The initial plan of "China T-Union Card" is to sell it at MTR stations, including Hong Kong West Kowloon Station.

It can be topped up at the Add Value Machine at Hong Kong MTR stations, or on Octopus App, and the limit of topping up is the same as regular Octopus card. The details will be announced at the end of March.

Octopus| UnionPay QR code enabled

In response to the trend of Hong Kong people traveling north, Octopus has been actively expanding electronic payment services in the Mainland in recent years, and teamed up with UnionPay last year to launch the Octopus Union QR code.

Citizens can add the "UnionPay QR code" in Octopus App to activate the electronic payment function. It does not require prior registration, and it is not necessary to bind the Mainland mobile phone number and other data.

Octopus Union QR code can be used to pay at stores that accept UnionPay.

In Mainland, as long as "UnionPay" is available, Octopus Union QR code can be used for payment. (Web Image)

The Union QR code feature inside the Octopus App can be used at more than 34 million consumption points worldwide, including Mainland China, Japan, and South Korea.

All consumption from Octopus Union card will directly deduct from the Octopus wallet, and users can use FPS to top up.

Octopus| Shenzhen-HK Octopus  Dual wallets applicable in national bus system

Last August, Octopus also teamed up Shenzhen Tong to launch the Shenzhen-Hong Kong Octopus card, which is a contactless smart IC card.

The card contains two wallets in one card, which has both electronic wallet of Shenzhen Tong and Octopus, operating in CNY and HKD dual-wallet mode. It is used for public transportation in Hong Kong and the Mainland.

Jointly issued by Octopus and Shenzhen Tong, the front of the Shenzhen-Hong Kong Octopus card combines elements of Hong Kong's Bauhinia and Shenzhen's Rhododendron. (Image source: VCG)

The Hong Kong dollar wallet uses the technology standard of Octopus, while the CNY wallet uses the standard of "China T-Union" by the Ministry of Transport of China, each using Hong Kong dollars and CNY to top up.

Using Shenzhen-Hong Kong Octopus in Hong Kong is like using a regular Octopus card. It can be used for shopping, taking subway, buses and other public transportation.

While in the Mainland, the card can only be used for buses and subway. In some provinces and cities, the card can be used to take ferries. 

At present, the number of cities where the Shenzhen-Hong Kong Octopus is applicable has increased to 336.

Hong Kong residents can purchase the "Shenzhen-Hong Kong Mutual Pass" through the Shenzhen Tong APP or Shenzhen Tong official customer service outlets.

In addition, card purchase services are provided at many MTR stations, self-service terminals at the border checkpoints of Shenzhen and 53 post offices in the city.

Each card costs CNY 68, and there is no deposit in it. After purchasing the physical card, there is CNY 0 in the card and it needs to be topped up for use.

If it's not needed in the future, the money in the card cannot be refunded.

The top-up channels for the CNY wallet of Shenzhen Tong include Shenzhen Tong App, Shenzhen Tong customer service points, customer service centres at Shenzhen subway stations and Shenzhen Tong self-service terminals, etc.

The Octopus HKD wallet can be topped up at stations of subway line 1, line2 and line5 in Shenzhen, Hong Kong Octopus customer service centres, major convenience stores in Hong Kong, and in Octopus App.

The concepts of "Shenzhen-Hong Kong Octopus" and "Octopus - China T-Union Card" are similar. Whether the "China T-Union Card" will adopt the top-up facilities of "Shenzhen-Hong Kong Octopus"? We need to stay tuned for the information announced at the end of March.

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