Singapore, 23 January 2019 – Sentosa has become the first major integrated leisure destination in Singapore to go cashless for Chinese visitors, with the launch of Alipay's payment solutions across 70 per cent of merchants that participate in the Sentosa Islander Membership programme.
The new cashless initiative is a joint collaboration between Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC), Singapore Tourism Board (STB) and Alipay, the world's leading online and mobile payment platform operated by Ant Financial Services Group. This partnership will further enhance guest experiences and enable seamless access to Sentosa and its attractions, F&B and retail outlets for Chinese visitors, who can now enjoy more fun on the island with faster and more secure mobile transactions through the Alipay smartphone app.
Known for its diverse array of unique leisure experiences all on one island, located just minutes away from the city and shopping districts, Sentosa – The State of Fun has over 30 themed attractions, some 200 food & beverage (F&B) and retail outlets, 15 hotels with over 3,000 rooms, a mega integrated resort, two world-class golf courses, a yachting marina, and more.
The Alipay payment service, which is popular with Chinese users, is entering Sentosa at a time when China is growing in importance as a key source market for Singapore – it was the top market for visitor arrivals (1.7 million), as well as tourism receipts (S$2 billion) for Singapore in the first half of 2018.
To drive consumer awareness of and participation in the initiative, the three partners will run a marketing campaign entitled Smart Sentosa from now until March 2019. The campaign, comprising various promotions, is timed to coincide with key travel periods for Chinese visitors such as the Lunar New Year in February.
The Smart Sentosa campaign offers Chinese visitors the opportunity to grab the Sentosa Islander membership at an exclusive rate of just RMB10 (usual price S$25; about RMB118) before they arrive in The State of Fun. Sign-ups can be done through various platforms including; Alipay, Fliggy1, Taobao, or Tmall, with a virtual Sentosa Islander card appearing in guests' Alipay accounts after successful registration.
Apart from giving members and one of their companions2 unlimited free entry into Sentosa island, the Sentosa Islander membership also offers up to 50 per cent discounts at more than 70 attractions, F&B, hotels and retail outlets to Chinese visitors using Alipay. These merchants include Universal Studios Singapore®, S.E.A. Aquarium™, Adventure Cove Waterpark™, AJ Hackett Sentosa, as well as Shangri-La's Rasa Sentosa Resort & Spa, Amara Sanctuary Resort Sentosa, and more. To further drive tourist spend, Alipay will be offering users e-vouchers that can be redeemed at any of the participating merchants across Sentosa.
"With 19 million locals and tourists visiting Sentosa annually, technology is a key enabler in our efforts to create seamless experiences for today's digitally savvy and connected guests. The rollout of Alipay's cashless payment solutions in Sentosa is one fitting illustration of how we constantly collaborate with various partners on technological innovations to make our guests' stay fun and enjoyable. Through these efforts, we look forward to welcoming even more guests to Sentosa's unique leisure experiences," said Ms Lynette Ang, Chief Marketing Officer, SDC.
"According to a recent Nielsen report on outbound Chinese tourism and consumption trends, Singapore was ranked one of the most popular destinations outside of Chinese mainland for Chinese tourists to visit. In Singapore, Sentosa is a favourite attraction for Chinese visitors and business delegates who convene at the various hotels for seminars and conferences. We are happy to partner with Sentosa Development Corporation and Singapore Tourism Board to deploy Alipay touchpoints across the island for Chinese visitors who are looking for the best of retail, lifestyle and dining offerings and the same seamless payment experiences that they enjoy at home. It's a privilege that this service is being extended to Chinese visitors via Alipay for the first time. We are very excited to help merchants on Sentosa connect better with Chinese visitors," said Ms Cherry Huang, General Manager, Cross-border Business for South and Southeast Asia, Alipay.
"STB places emphasis on close and regular collaboration with partners within and outside of the travel industry to promote Destination Singapore and deliver high-quality experiences to our visitors. Our latest partnership with Sentosa and Alipay is a good illustration of how we work with partners as visitors from China can now access discounts and benefits on various online platforms before arrival, and enjoy a seamless on-ground experience in Singapore," said Ms Jacqueline Ng, Director, Marketing Partnerships and Planning, STB.
Epic Adventures from the Island Beyond campaign
STB and SDC have meanwhile jointly rolled out the inaugural 'Epic Adventures from the Island Beyond' marketing campaign, in a targeted effort to woo more Southeast Asian tourists to Sentosa.
The 'Epic Adventures from the Island Beyond' campaign is aligned with STB's new Passion Made Possible brand, which focuses on telling the stories of Singapore and its people to build affinity with visitors, as well as connecting with them through their passions.
It aims to showcase Sentosa's array of unique adventures and experiences by featuring the island's personalities, such as flowboarder Melissa Kamil from Wave House Sentosa, SDC's arborist Daniel Seah, as well as celebrity chef Sam Leong and his son Joe Leong from Forest 森.
The campaign consists of advertising across platforms such as print, social media and digital platforms and on-ground activations in markets such as Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines.
 Fliggy is Alipay's online travel platform.
 Limited to 100 persons per day.
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- For high-res images, please download at LINK.
- Please refer to Annex A for the list of participating merchants.
Operated by Ant Financial Services Group, Alipay is the world's largest mobile and online payment platform. Launched in 2004, Alipay currently has over 520 million active users and over 200 domestic financial institution partners. Alipay has evolved from a digital wallet to a lifestyle enabler. Users can hail a taxi, book a hotel, buy movie tickets, pay utility bills, make appointments with doctors, or purchase wealth management products directly from within the app. In addition to online payments, Alipay is expanding to in-store offline payments both inside and outside of China. Alipay's in-store payment service covers more than 40 countries and regions across the world, and tax reimbursement via Alipay is supported in 29 countries and regions. Alipay works with over 250 overseas financial institutions and payment solution providers to enable cross-border payments for Chinese traveling overseas and overseas customers who purchase products from Chinese e-commerce sites. Alipay currently supports 27 currencies.
About the Singapore Tourism Board
The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is the lead development agency for tourism, one of Singapore's key economic sectors. Together with industry partners and the community, we shape a dynamic Singapore tourism landscape. We bring the Passion Made Possible brand to life by differentiating Singapore as a vibrant destination that inspires people to share and deepen their passions.
More: www.stb.gov.sg or www.visitsingapore.com | Follow us: facebook.com/STBsingapore or twitter.com/stb_sg
Sentosa is Asia's leading leisure destination and Singapore's premier island resort getaway, located within 15 minutes from the central business and shopping districts. The island resort is managed by Sentosa Development Corporation, which works with various stakeholders in overseeing property investments, attractions development, and operation of the various leisure offerings and management of the residential precinct on the island.
The 500-hectare island resort is home to an exciting array of themed attractions, award-winning spa retreats, lush rainforests, golden sandy beaches, resort accommodations, world-renowned golf courses, a deep-water yachting marina and luxurious residences – making Sentosa a vibrant island resort for business and leisure. Making Sentosa its home, too, is Singapore's first integrated resort, Resorts World Sentosa, which operates South East Asia's first Universal Studios theme park.
Situated on the eastern end of Sentosa Island is Sentosa Cove, an exclusive oceanfront and residential enclave bustling with some 2,000 homes, romantic quayside restaurants, retail and specialty shops. The Island is also proud to be home to Sentosa Golf Club and its two acclaimed golf courses, The Serapong and The New Tanjong. Sentosa Golf Club hosts the SMBC Singapore Open and the HSBC Women's Champions, featuring some of the world's best golf professionals.
Welcoming a growing number of local and international guests every year, Sentosa is an integral part of Singapore's goal to be a global destination to work, live and play. For more information, please visit: www.sentosa.com.sg.