After successfully setting up Alipay, I planned to start using it on the Uber car-sharing app instead of my foreign credit card. However, I was told by customer service after a few failed attempts that only mainland China customers with a shenfenzheng number could link up Alipay to Uber.
That’s when I noticed a third payment option: Baidu Wallet (also known as Baifubao), launched last April by search giant Baidu. Within a few minutes, I had the service set up and was happily riding off into the distance (at a crawl ’cause it was rush hour, but still).
1. To find payment setup in the Uber app, click on the profile icon in the upper left corner of the home screen.
2. Select “Payment.”
3. Choose “Baidu Wallet.” Enter your Chinese bank card number (online payment must be enabled first through your bank).
4. On the next screen, enter your name and surname exactly as they appear in your bank account details, then your mobile number.
5. A six-digit verification code will be sent to your mobile phone. Enter it in the pop-up box.
That’s it! Baidu Wallet will appear in your payment options screen; it’ll be available to use next time you call an Uber.
Update [August 29]: We’ve heard from a couple of readers that not all domestic banks are supported with passports (such as ICBC and Agricultural Bank of China) and there’s a 20-character limit on names.
Sijia Chen is a contributing editor at beijingkids and a freelance writer specializing in parenting, education, travel, environment, and culture. Her work has appeared in The Independent, Midnight Poutine, Rover Arts, and more. Follow her on Twitter at @sijiawrites or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Screenshots: Sijia Chen