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Can I register on Taobao only with a Chinese phone number?

Update on: November 16, 2023

Can I register on Taobao only with a Chinese phone number?

Of course not. Taobao supports most countries and regions, including mobile phone numbers in 169 countries and regions.


The following is a list of 169 countries and regions supported by Taobao. Please ensure your mobile phone number is in the list below before registering:


Which countries does Taobao support registration in?



If the mobile phone number in your country does not support Taobao account registration, you cannot create a Taobao account. Verification is not just limited to a phone number; it also includes verifying your credit card unless you buy a mobile number online for another region, such as the US, UK, or China.




Is it easy to shop on Taobao with a non-Chinese phone number?


Non-Chinese phone numbers can be registered on Taobao, but shopping on Taobao can be challenging.

Most Taobao sellers do not understand English, so it is difficult for you to communicate with the sellers. In addition, the text messages you receive during the shopping and delivery are all in Chinese.

The biggest problem is that there is no quality control service for your order, you'll have a hard time asking for customer service help.




How do you get a Chinese phone number for free?


Getting a free Chinese phone number can take time and effort for individuals outside China. Chinese telecommunications providers usually issue phone numbers in China, and a Chinese address and identification documents are required to obtain a phone number.


If you are in China, you can visit the store of your local telecom operator, such as China Mobile, China Unicom, or China Telecom, to inquire about their services and plans to obtain a phone number.


However, getting a free Chinese phone number becomes more challenging if you are not in China. Most Chinese telecom providers' services are primarily targeted at residents or businesses within China. They usually require a local Chinese ID card or passport to register.


Another option is to use an online phone number service that offers virtual phone numbers. These services usually require a fee, but they allow you to receive calls and text messages from a virtual Chinese phone. Some popular online phone number providers include Skype, Google Voice, and various virtual number providers.


It is important to note that the availability and reliability of these services may vary, and some services may have restrictions on certain types of use or may not be available for specific purposes, such as signing up for certain online services that require an actual phone number in China or application.




How do foreigners in China obtain a Chinese phone number?


Foreigners in China can obtain a Chinese phone number by following these steps:


Choose a mobile phone provider: The primary mobile phone providers in China are China Mobile, China Unicom, and China Telecom. Foreigners can purchase SIM cards from these providers' retail stores or authorized dealers.

Bring your passport: Foreigners must provide a valid passport and visa when purchasing a SIM card.

Register your SIM card: After purchasing your SIM card, you need to register it with your mobile phone provider. Registration usually involves providing personal information such as your name and address.

Activate SIM card: After registering your SIM card, you need to insert it into your phone and follow the instructions provided by your mobile phone provider to activate it.

Choose a mobile phone plan: Once you activate your SIM card, you can choose one that suits your needs. Phone plans in China usually include talk time, text messages, and data usage.

Pay for your cell phone plan: You can pay for your cell phone plan in various ways, including cash, credit card, or through online payment services like Alipay or WeChat Pay.


Some mobile phone providers in China may have additional requirements for foreigners, such as a minimum stay in China, a local address, or a Chinese bank account. It is recommended to check with your mobile phone provider if there are any additional requirements.




Will Taobao call me after I make a purchase?


If a non-Chinese citizen bought something from Taobao and received a call from China the next day, could it be Taobao or a scam?


Under normal circumstances, Taobao officials will not call users directly.

Only Taobao sellers will contact customers by phone, but this situation is relatively rare. They usually get users to give good reviews of products or delete negative reviews.

Under normal circumstances, when they need to confirm order information, product information, address information, or product shortages from users, Taobao sellers will contact users through Wangwang (Taobao chat program).


If you receive a call claiming to be from an official Taobao and asking you to provide personal information, it may be a scam.




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