India’s ever-evolving tourism sector is experiencing an upsurge with Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) touching a new high of 6.19 million in post-pandemic in 2022, with all tourists ready to indulge and explore the hidden treasures that the country has to offer. However, the burgeoning tourism sector comes along with its own set of challenges. One of the most critical being the payment hurdles that inhibit foreign travellers from making simplified digital payments seamlessly.
Against this backdrop, the UPI ecosystem in India has been revolutionised given the latest development in the UPI market that allows foreign nationals to enjoy a hassle-free transaction experience and a streamlined digitised financial journey. CheqUPI- India’s first UPI interface platform for foreign nationals, recently conducted a survey to showcase the impact of its UPI payment infrastructure in boosting foreign UPI merchant transactions in India.
Leveraging the scan-and-pay digital system, the tourism sector continues to grow at an unprecedented momentum. According to the survey, more than 10,000 merchant transactions were made by foreign travellers at 3500+ offline and online merchants, registered at CheqUPI’s digital payment platform. As UPI penetrates deeper into geographies and inclusivity, it is rapidly evolving and becoming the preferred payment channel by foreigners for completing all kinds of transactions from a local tea stall to a luxury retail outlet.
Elated about the UPI revolution for foreign travellers, Manish Kumar Shukla, Co-founder of CheqUPI said, “We at Cheq UPI are on a journey to cater to the underserved audience and simplify and enhance the digital payment expense for foreign nationals and travellers visiting India. By harnessing the potential of these innovative payment solutions, travellers can easily and securely make digital payments at multiple merchant establishments equipped with UPI QR codes across the country, taking a step forward to building a financially inclusive economy.”
“UPI is India’s beloved digital payment system and with CheqUPI, it is steadily gaining global attention. Digitization of cash transactions for foreign tourists in India has helped in minimizing several challenges for them – currency exchange rate hurdles, carrying change, finding ATMs and other problems associated with making payments in rural areas. With CheqUPI, we have significantly reduced the cash dependency to help foreigners make seamless transactions at online and offline merchants for food bills, taxis, hotel rooms, shopping, etc.”
The majority of the time, foreign tourists are prone to vulnerable scams like overcharging, card-skimming etc. and language barriers. This can lead to misunderstandings, making bargaining with street vendors an exhaustive process given their unfamiliarity with local customs and prices. As a result, the survey reveals that QR-powered UPI removes all such obstacles in the financial journey with digital transactions being made to 20% online and 80% offline merchants.
With the recent RBI intervention, the G20 delegates had their first-hand experience of making merchant payments seamlessly through the UPI interface which led to a surge in the Person to Merchant (P2M) transaction space. The findings of the report suggest that the majority of the online transactions were made to top convenience brands like Zomato, Grofers, Ola, Uber, Swiggy accounted for more than 1,000 transactions. On the contrary, maximum offline merchant transactions were made to travel, leisure, fashion and beauty brands, enhancing the retail experience of travellers.
The rise of UPI and its increased accessibility with the aid of the dynamic UPI platform CheqUPI’s survey report suggests how it has simplified the user experience of foreign tourists. The UPI company has successfully onboarded more than three hundred foreign nationals from 30 different countries who have actively added money to their Cheq wallet and are using it for their daily transactions.
The company’s innovative approach – to making UPI accessible to foreign tourists, amalgamated smooth transaction experience with leading technologies that are projected to lead the nation towards a concrete digital payment ecosystem.