- Binary Brokers with UnionPay
- How UnionPay Works
- Company Overview & History
- Other UnionPay Services
- Global Acceptance
- Transaction Times
- Rewards & Promotions
- Pros Of UnionPay For Binary Options Traders
- Cons Of UnionPay For Binary Options Traders
- How To Make UnionPay Deposits & Withdrawals
- 1. Sign Up For A UnionPay Debit/Credit/Prepaid Card
- 2. Load Your Prepaid Card Or Enter Debit/Credit Card Details
- 3. Choose The Amount And Base Currency
- Verdict On UnionPay Binary Options Brokers
- What Is A UnionPay Card?
- Is UnionPay A Credit Card?
- How Do You Get A UnionPay Card?
- What Is A UnionPay Card Number?
- Does UnionPay Have A Remittance Service?
UnionPay is a Chinese financial services firm with billions of debit and credit cards active across the globe facilitating online payments and shop purchases. UnionPay can also be used to make deposits and withdrawals at binary options brokers.
This review explains how UnionPay works, from its transaction times and fees to the benefits and drawbacks of using the payment method to fund binary options trading accounts. We have also compiled a list of the best binary options brokers that accept UnionPay deposits in 2024.
Binary Brokers with UnionPay
How UnionPay Works
Company Overview & History
China UnionPay (China UnionPay Merchant Services Co Ltd.) was founded in 2002 and is a payment processing company. Its owners are the Chinese state and its headquarters are in Shanghai. UnionPay International is a subsidiary of China UnionPay.
As the only interbank network in China, usage levels have grown considerably, and in 2015, UnionPay overtook Visa and Mastercard to become the largest card payment processing organization in the world. Despite this, the firm’s customer base is still predominantly focused on China. Although some providers now offer UnionPay to customers without a Chinese bank account, it is still the case that this payment method is more accessible to Chinese residents and online traders.
Examples of banks and financial services firms that the brand is linked with include:
- Hang Seng Bank
- Khan Bank (Mongolia)
In 2008, OCBC Bank also partnered with China UnionPay to launch a remittance service in China. Although UnionPay and the Japanese payment brand, JCB, are technically in competition, they have previously announced their intention to cooperate. This is not unusual with the company also working with Alipay, NETSPay and WeChat Pay, as well as having a joint card with PayPak.
That said, there will always be competition vs the other companies operating in this field. This is reflected by the fact that AliExpress – the company that created Alipay – does not allow UnionPay transactions on its website.
Other UnionPay Services
UnionPay Mobile QuickPass supports contactless/QR payment and online transactions. It is also compatible with Apple Pay and Google Pay in certain countries.
In 2022, the company announced a partnership with DBS Bank in Singapore where users can download an app and apply for a UnionPay virtual card to make QR code payments in selected countries.
In addition, its cards are accepted at 1.7 million ATMs outside mainland China including in Hong Kong (HK), the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Russia. Overseas/international ATM cash withdrawals – with domestic cards – are subject to a limit of RMB10,000 each day with each card, whether that’s in the UK or the US.
All ATMs with the UnionPay logo accept its cards.
One of the reasons why UnionPay has become a popular payment processing organization for both in-person and online shopping is that the list of countries accepting it has grown across the world. In fact, its cards are accepted in 181 countries and regions. For example, a partnership with Discover helped give UnionPay access to the US market.
Some of the countries in which UnionPay’s credit/debit/prepaid cards are accepted include: Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Australia, New Zealand (NZ), USA (including New York), France, Germany, Switzerland, Canada, Zimbabwe, Indonesia, Portugal, Philippines, Pakistan, Nepal, Romania, Nigeria, Turkey and the UK.
Within these 181 countries and regions, many businesses including binary options brokers, such as Alpari, accept UnionPay debit/credit cards or real-time bank transfers as payment.
Although Visa and Mastercard are probably still more popular across binary options brokers, online trading firms are increasingly recognizing the importance of accepting UnionPay deposits as a way to tap into the Chinese market.
Transaction times are important when trading binary options as investors often have to make frequent deposits. Fortunately, deposit times when using UnionPay are generally instant or within a few hours of the request. Withdrawals can take longer – sometimes several days – depending on the binary options broker.
Those using a prepaid UnionPay card will also have to account for the processing times to transfer money onto the card. Having said that, some third-party providers ensure that any value loaded onto a card with cash is available immediately.
Most binary options brokers do not charge for deposits and withdrawals using UnionPay. However, traders may find fees of around 1% at some firms so make sure you shop around.
In terms of fees related to UnionPay itself, charges are generally imposed on the seller rather than the buyer (as is often the case with credit cards). The fee imposed on sellers is typically around 0.8% with 0.1% of this being UnionPay commission.
Other fees such as currency conversion charges will depend on the country the trader resides in. Purchases are made in the local currency (UnionPay processes nearly all world currencies), so the card will make payments in the US using US dollars, for example. These US dollars are then converted into Chinese Yuan (RMB) at the relevant exchange rate, meaning that traders in China or those that regularly trade in Chinese Yuan will have currency conversion charges effectively waived (these are usually between 1 and 2% higher than the value of foreign purchases).
Other residents, depending on the currency they use and their UnionPay provider, may incur currency conversion charges so make sure you check the terms and conditions before signing up.
Note that some third-party providers have minimum and maximum cash loads for prepaid cards. For example, East West Bank UnionPay Prepaid Card has a minimum cash load of $50 and a maximum weekly cash load of $1000. Providers may also have annual fees.
China UnionPay is a secure payment method for trading binary options. It’s 3D Secure, which provides an additional layer of security and authentication when making online transactions.
Although there have been stories on Chinese social media about funds being lost from accounts following cards being copied or stolen, this is a risk inherent with any credit or debit card.
QR code payments are also encrypted, although most binary options traders making deposits into their brokerage accounts will not make payments this way.
If using Apple Pay, no transaction information will be retained by Apple. This reduces the risk of your personal data being lost or stolen.
Rewards & Promotions
UnionPay offers various rewards, discounts, promotions and online rebates when customers make payments at particular merchants in countries from Japan to France. The following are examples of the offers that are or have been available:
- Starbucks e-voucher
- KFC food and drink deal
- 10% off at Gmarket Global
- Discount with Grab when using services such as GrabCar
Also take a look at UnionPay Your Way! and U Plan on UnionPay International’s mobile app to find more offers. Some promotions are linked to specific financial services companies such as the Big C discount when using the KTC UnionPay card. Past and present offers linked range from free tickets for movies to an AEON gift voucher. Premium cards are also available such as the UnionPay Diamond Prestige Card.
Importantly, the best UnionPay binary options brokers also offer welcome bonuses. This could be in the form of free trading capital, a number of risk-free trades, or entry into a raffle. Check the trading platform’s latest offers before opening a live account.
Pros Of UnionPay For Binary Options Traders
- Broker transaction times are often instant
- No currency conversion fees for Chinese traders
- Accepted in most countries – it is an international debit/credit card
- Various offers and promotions available in different countries for traders
Cons Of UnionPay For Binary Options Traders
- It can be difficult to acquire a UnionPay card outside the Asia-Pacific region
- Many binary options brokers still prefer to use Visa, Mastercard or e-wallets like PayPal and Skrill
How To Make UnionPay Deposits & Withdrawals
1. Sign Up For A UnionPay Debit/Credit/Prepaid Card
Binary options traders first need to identify an approved bank, for example HSBC China, that is linked to the UnionPay network. This will be easier for investors in China and the wider Asia-Pacific region. ΩTraders in Europe and the US can still find providers but the choice is more limited.
When you register, financial institutions will often have to meet Know Your Customer (KYC) obligations so identification will likely be required. Having said that, prepaid cards can be issued with or without KYC requirements.
2. Load Your Prepaid Card Or Enter Debit/Credit Card Details
Once registration has been completed, traders with a prepaid UnionPay card will need to load it with funds before they open a binary options brokerage account or log in to it. Some providers allow you to do this through a mobile app. Make sure that you adhere to any minimum or maximum deposit requirements.
Investors with a debit or credit card can enter their details into the relevant section of their binary options broker’s website straight away using the card number and any other details that are required.
3. Choose The Amount And Base Currency
When choosing the amount, keep in mind any currency conversion charges. Some binary options brokers will allow you to choose the base currency of the account, so investors can sometimes use this to their advantage to limit any FX charges.
Also, remember that some binary options brokers may not offer free deposits and withdrawals with UnionPay so these costs need to be accounted for.
Verdict On UnionPay Binary Options Brokers
Although Visa and Mastercard are currently winning the battle vs UnionPay at many binary options brokers, the brand’s strong and increasing international acceptance is making it an attractive alternative. Whether based in Europe, Asia or the Americas, many businesses around the world including binary options brokers are offering UnionPay as a reliable payment option. It is also often free to deposit and withdraw and traders can take advantage of the various discounts and promotions available.
Check out our list of binary options brokers that accept UnionPay deposits to start trading.
What Is A UnionPay Card?
A UnionPay card allows customers to make purchases online and face-to-face in most countries around the world. Both debit and credit cards are available. The payment solution can also be used to fund binary options trading accounts at supporting brands.
Is UnionPay A Credit Card?
Some UnionPay cards are credit cards, however, there are also debit cards in circulation. UnionPay is the network for processing payments – the cards themselves are generally issued by approved banks and providers.
How Do You Get A UnionPay Card?
UnionPay cards are generally issued through approved banks and providers. Applications usually need to be made through them rather than directly via UnionPay. Once you have received your card, you can make a deposit to a supporting binary options broker.
What Is A UnionPay Card Number?
Most UnionPay cards will come with a 16-digit card number on the front which is typically needed to complete online transactions along with other information on the card such as the expiry date. Make sure you only deposit funds into your binary options trading account using trusted and secure brands. See our list of recommended trading platforms to get started.
Does UnionPay Have A Remittance Service?
Yes – UnionPay has a cross-border remittance service called Money Express. This service has been offered in more than 57 countries and regions.