Global payments firm Flywire and UnionPay International have announced a promotion that will provide Chinese students with discounted foreign exchange rates on international tuition payments through the end of 2018. It will also allow healthcare payments to be made.
The offer is available to international students and patients originating from China and attending any school or receiving care at any healthcare institution globally that offers Flywire as a preferred method for international payments.
Payers using a UnionPay credit card will get the same foreign exchange pricing as a bank transfer – the lowest cost card payment option available.
In addition to China being the number one source of international students studying around the world, it is also a major source of international patients, with an estimated 500,000 outbound medical trips in 2016 according to a report by The New York Times.
Since its founding, Flywire has processed over $5 billion in payments for over 1,400 schools, hospitals and businesses.
“UnionPay is the most trusted payment brand in China and a preferred option for students, patients and their families when making cross-border payments,” said Ryan Frere, vice president of global payments for Flywire.
Frere told The PIE News they conducted a test of the promotion in January and on average, saw “a 3-4 times bump in payments coming through UnionPay” as a result.
“China is one of the most price-sensitive markets we work in. Payers spend more time researching exchange rates and it certainly influences which payment methods they use,” he said.
“UnionPay is a brand that most Chinese citizens have access to, so familiarity and convenience factor in too.”
Chief representative of UnionPay International June Chen added: “Our partnership with Flywire takes the cost, complexity and friction out of cross-border payments for Chinese citizens.
“Together, we’re able to connect Flywire’s extensive network in education and healthcare with the preferred payment choice in China, making it faster, easier and less expensive for all involved.”