Shanghai, 15 April – AirAsia and UnionPay International signed an agreement of strategic partnership at a ceremony held in Shanghai. UnionPay International and AirAsia will embark on a continuing partnership that sets aim to optimizing the travel experience for UnionPay bank cardholders around the world throughout the AirAsia ecosystem including airasia.com for flights, hotels and other related transactions. Cai Jianbo, CEO of UnionPay International and Tony Fernandes, Group CEO of AirAsia, signed the agreement at the ceremony.

Guests from China will now be able to book flights on airasia.com in RMB using their UnionPay cards. Tune Money, AirAsia’s pre-paid card partner will also issue a multi-currency prepaid card in collaboration with UnionPay, which will be available in CNY, THB and HKD. UnionPay will create exclusive online offers for cardholders through its China based merchants.

With this partnership, UnionPay will also support AirAsia’s BIG Loyalty Programme with auto points conversion targeted for the fourth quarter of this year. The AirAsia BIG Loyalty Programme enables BIG Shots to earn BIG Points via all companies under the Tune Group such as AirAsia, Tune Hotels and Tune Talk in addition to over 100 BIG Loyalty Partners across the region. Members will be able to get BIG points for every UnionPay transaction and redeem points for AirAsia flights. BIG and UnionPay are also planning to issue a cobrand card targeted for the third quarter of this year.

CEO of UnionPay International, Cai Jianbo points out that Southeast Asia is an important destination for Chinese visitors and businessmen, as well as an essential market for UnionPay international. UnionPay will continue to cooperate with important companies and institutions in Southeast Asia to improve UnionPay’s services in local markets.

Tony Fernandes, Group CEO of AirAsia has considered the partnership with UnionPay a big step, “The partnership represents our commitment to the Chinese market that will allow more people in China to fly, boosting tourism between China and Southeast Asia and beyond. We are always looking for ways to make travel more accessible to the masses and there is no better partner than UnionPay in China. Through this partnership not only will UnionPay cardholders be able to transact in their own currency, they will also be able to collect BIG points they can use towards future travel.”

“10 years ago AirAsia launched the first flight into China. We never dreamt that 10 years later, AirAsia would be operating 34 routes to over 16 destinations in Greater China, with 352 weekly frequencies. Over 20 million Chinese Passengers have flown with us and we are extremely proud of the fact that 80% of them were going on their very first flight. China has become one of the most important markets for AirAsia and we value all Chinese customers’ experience with us. We plan to continue to expand our network in China with increasing frequencies and will constantly improve upon our products and services to satisfy the needs of our Chinese guests,” continued Fernandes.

AirAsia will kick off a series of events and special promotions to celebrate their 10th anniversary in China.

A special promotion was announced to celebrate the partnership with UnionPay. UnionPay cardholders can enjoy 50% off of flights departing from China across the network on airasia.com during the booking period between 12pm of 15 April 2015 and 16 April for the travel period from 1 September 2015 to January 31 2015. Guests can enjoy exploring destinations such as Malaysia, Thailand, Australia and many more. Terms apply. Please visit www.airasia.com and book via clicking the promotion banner. 

UnionPay payment option is now also available on tunehotels.com. International value hotel chain, Tune Hotels is also offering up to 30% off of stays at hotels in Malaysia, Australia and the United Kingdom, exclusively available for UnionPay cardholders. The promotion kicks off from 12pm of 15 April till 26th April. For more information on Tune Hotels and this promotion, please visitwww.tunehotels.com/unionpay.

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