Costa's WeChat Mini Program will first debut on Costa Atlantica (Image: Costa Cruises)
In a cruise industry first, Costa Cruises is to launch a new WeChat Mini Program to enable guests to make mobile payments and enjoy enhanced onboard experiences while sailing on its Asia-based ships.
WeChat (also known as Weixin in China) is an online platform for instant messaging, commerce and payment services. Since 8 August 2017, guests have been able to use Costa’s Mini Program to book and pay for cruise itineraries via the WeChat platform without having to download the full standalone mobile app. From 2 September, they will also be able to use WeChat to book and pay for speciality restaurants, spa treatments, duty-free shopping and other onboard services onboard Costa Atlantica. This can all be done via a complimentary intranet service, without guests needing to subscribe to onboard internet services.
“As a pioneer in the Chinese cruise industry, Costa Cruises constantly innovates to enhance the guest experience,” said Mario Zanetti, president of Costa Group Asia. “With China being one of the world’s leaders in mobile and digital advancements, we see great potential in leveraging WeChat’s leading position and technologies to not only facilitate hassle-free payment, but also provide a more immersive and digitised onboard experience for our guests.”
Costa Cruises first brought cruising to China in 2006 and now operates there year-round, with a total of four ships based across North, East and South China.
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