There’s now another way to pay for those air tickets to the Maldives when you buy them over the Singapore Airlines website.
Besides credit cards, the airline now accepts payment via the popular PayPal service as well, as it rolls out an alternative payment service to customers in the United States and six Asia-Pacific markets in Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Japan.
Eventually, users from 17 countries will be able to buy tickets using PayPal, in a tie-up today that is said to be the biggest between PayPal and an Asian carrier to date.
This is a big win for PayPal, which is commonly used for many online purchases on eBay, for example, but not always the preferred payment method for travellers, especially well-heeled ones travelling on Singapore Airlines. According to PayPal, its service is currently used by 94 million active users in 190 markets, who transact in 24 currencies.
When they sign up with PayPal, users can choose to link a credit card or bank account for online payment. When they pay online, they only have to key in a PayPal username and password – instead of a long credit card number and other details. Acting as a middleman, PayPal also helps users resolve disputes in terms of payment and delivery of goods.
For Singapore Airlines users, what the new deal means is added convenience, especially when it comes to students or other users who do not yet have a credit card. The alternative payment method may also be welcome by those who still worry about giving their credit card numbers away online.
And users stand to win back the price of their air ticket (up to S$2,000) if they pay for it with PayPal between March 7 and April 6, 2011, as part of the launch promotion. Details here.