Finance & Economics

Alibaba brings duty-free and tax-free shopping online

Chinese travelers will be able to shop online at duty-free and tax-free shops

Alibaba brings duty-free and tax-free shopping online. Source:

Alibaba Group’s online travel platform, Fliggy, is launching a new service that allows Chinese travelers to shop online at duty-free and tax-free shops, international retailers and specialty stores overseas before they head off on vacation.

Called Fliggy Buy, the service gives Chinese consumers detailed information and product reviews in their own language prior to reaching their destination, picking them up after they arrive. This will allow travelers to spend more time exploring and experiencing the destination, Fliggy said, rather than losing that time to in-store shopping.

For merchants, it’s a chance to capitalize on a tourism market that saw Chinese travelers take 140 million outbound trips last year, up 13.5% since 2017, and spend an average of 9% more on their overseas trips in 2018, according to Fliggy.

Chinese travelers can choose from a range of products, including cosmetics, suitcases, bags and alcohol offered by popular merchants, and choose a store at which to pick up their items. The service is still in its early stages, as so far Furla Hong Kong and Laox of Japan are selling on the channel. But more merchants are expected to join.

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