Use Express Travel with Apple Pay in China mainland

Travelling on public transport in China mainland has never been easier or more convenient. Find out how to use Express Travel with Apple Pay on your iPhone or Apple Watch.

To use Express Travel with Apple Pay in China mainland, you first need to set up your public transport card with Apple Pay on a compatible device: iPhone 6s or later or an Apple Watch Series 3 or later with the latest version of iOS or watchOS.* You can check with your public transport agency to see which devices are compatible with your transit card.

*Depending on your location, you may be able to use an Apple Watch Series 1 or Apple Watch Series 2.

Pay for your journey with your transit card using Apple Pay

You can use Express Travel with Apple Pay to pay for public transport services, such as the metro and buses.1

  1. Approach the ticket gates and hold the top of your iPhone or the display of your Apple Watch near the middle of the ticket gate scanner until you feel a vibration.
  2. You'll see Done and a tick on the display. Your iPhone or Apple Watch must be turned on, but it doesn't have to be connected to a network. With Express Travel, you don't need to validate with Face ID, Touch ID or your passcode, and you don't need to wake or unlock your device or open an app.
  3. Approach the ticket gates and hold the top of your iPhone or the display of your Apple Watch near the middle of the ticket gate scanner until you feel a vibration

On your compatible iPhone with the latest iOS version, Express Cards with power reserve is available for up to five hours when your iPhone needs to be charged. You can press the side button to check if Express Cards are available when your iPhone needs to be charged. Doing this often may significantly reduce the power reserve for Express Cards. If you choose to power off your iPhone, this feature will not be available.

To pay in shops with your default credit or debit card, you need to:

  • On an iPhone with Touch ID, double-click the Home button when your iPhone is locked, or select your card in Wallet and authenticate before holding your iPhone near the reader.
  • On iPhone X, iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR and later, double-click the side button and authenticate with Face ID before holding your iPhone near the reader.

If a station agent needs to service your transit card in Apple Pay, put your device into Service Mode before you hand it to the station agent:

  • On your iPhone, open the Wallet app, tap the more button more icon. Then open Service Mode and authenticate with Face ID, Touch ID or your passcode.
  • For your Apple Watch, remove it from your wrist, enter the passcode to unlock it, and double-click the side button. Then select your transit card, press the screen firmly, tap Service Mode and ask the station agent to hold your Watch with the display facing down.

Change your Express Travel card

The first travel card you add to Wallet will be your Express Travel card. If you add more travel cards and want to change your Express Travel card, follow these steps.

iPhone

  1. Go to the Settings app, then tap Wallet & Apple Pay.
  2. On iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus and later, tap Express Travel Card. On iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, tap Automatic Transit Card.
  3. Choose a new transit card, then authorise with Face ID, Touch ID or passcode.

Apple Watch

  1. Open the Watch app on your iPhone.
  2. Go to the My Watch tab, tap Wallet & Apple Pay, then tap Express Travel Card.
  3. Choose a new card, then authorise by entering your passcode on your Apple Watch.

If you don't want a card to be set for Express Travel, just choose None.


Apple Watch and iPhone with transit card

Check the balance on your transit card

On your iPhone, open the Wallet app, then tap your transit card. Your current balance is displayed.

On your Apple Watch, double-click the side button and swipe to your transit card to see your balance.

You can get notifications when your balance is low. To do this, open Wallet, tap your transit card and tap the more button more icon. Tap Balance, then tap No reminder and follow the steps to set up notifications.

If your transit card balance has not been updated

  1. Open the Wallet app on your iPhone.
  2. Tap your transit card
  3. Tap the more button .
  4. Turn on Service Mode, then authenticate with Face ID, Touch ID or your passcode.

To turn off Service Mode, tap on the card. If your balance is still incorrect, restart your iPhone.

Add money to your transit card

To add money to your transit card, use a China UnionPay credit or debit card that you've added to Wallet. The minimum and maximum amount you can add to your iPhone or Apple Watch might vary by public transport agency.

On your iPhone:

  1. Open the Wallet app.
  2. Tap the transit card you want to add money to.
  3. Tap the more button more icon, tap Add Money, then choose an amount and tap Add.
  4. Select your UnionPay credit or debit card and use Face ID, Touch ID or your passcode to complete the transaction.

On your Apple Watch:

  1. Open the Wallet app.
  2. Tap your transit card.
  3. Scroll to Card Options and tap Add Money.
  4. Follow the instructions on the screen.

Before you start your trip, make sure you have enough money on your transit card in Apple Pay for the entire journey. Also, make sure your battery has enough charge to last the entire journey.

You can also add money via your public transport agency's app.

  1. In Shanghai, you can use your transit card to pay for the metro, buses, ferries and maglev trains.

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