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Purchasing Flights with Alternative Airlines just became easier


You can now pay for flights with Airtel when booking through Alternative Airlines. Just search for flights as normal and simply select Airtel as your payment method when you decide to book. At Alternative Airlines, we want you to pay your way, using the currency and payment method that best suits you. Check out our other methods of payment here.


You can now use Airtel to buy your flights with Alternative Airlines

Alternative Airlines, the specialist online travel agent in booking lesser known and niche destinations, is delighted to announce it accepts Airtel on all of its websites. Airtel allows customers to pay through their mobile, using their mobile number at a pace that is suitable and comfortable for them.

"At Alternative Airlines, we are always trying to make flight bookings easier for our customers. Adding a convenient, secure payment method like M-Pesa was a natural fit."

-Sam Argyle, Managing Director




What is M-Pesa?



M-Pesa Mobile Wallet is a branchless banking service, allowing transfer methods only through mobile phone devices.


Vodafone M-Pesa is a Mobile Wallet service from Vodafone that offers Money Transfer, Bill & Utility Pay, Merchant payments and Business Solutions (Enterprise Cash Management) enabling instant transfer and receipt of money anytime, from anywhere.


M-Pesa allows users to deposit, withdraw, transfer money and pay for goods and services easily with a mobile device. Other services include financing and micro-financing. M-Pesa was launched in 2007 by Vodafone for Safaricom and Vodacom, the largest mobile network operators in Kenya and Tanzania. 


M-Pesa has since expanded to South Africa, Afghanistan, India, Romania and in 2015, to Albania.


M-Pesa allows users to:

  • Send balances using PIN-secured SMS text messages to other users  (including sellers of goods and services)
  • Deposit money into an account stored on their cell phones
  • Redeem deposits for regular money.


M-Pesa is available in the following countries:

  • Romania
  • Kenya 
  • Tanzania


Note - Users are charged a small fee for sending and withdrawing money using the service.

M-Pesa customers can deposit and withdraw money from a network of agents that includes airtime resellers and retail outlets acting as banking agents.


M-Pesa has become the most succeful mobile-phone based financial service in the developing world, 2010.

By 2012, a stock of about 17 million M-Pesa accounts had been registered in Kenya. By June 2016, a total of 7 million M-Pesa accounts have been opened in Tanzania by Vodacom. The service has been lauded for giving millions of people access to the formal financial system and for reducing crime in otherwise largely cash-based societies.




What are Mobile Payments?



Whether it is booking travel, buying online, paying back loans, or sending money to friends and family, payments need to be made. Mobile payments make that process efficient and effective. Instead of cash and credit cards, mobile payments allow customers to use a mobile device, which they carry everywhere, to pay for goods and services.

In the African travel industry, mobile payments simplify the reservation process by enabling users with a mobile money account in any country to instantly make travel purchases in their home and foreign countries.




Benefits of Mobile Payment Solutions




Ability to Provide Financial Services


Mobile payments are a great solution for providing financial services to the unbanked population of the world (estimated at 50% of the world’s adult population, according to Financial Access’ 2009 Report “Half the World is Unbanked”). Because 70% of Africa now has mobile phones and banks in this part of the world are inaccessible to most of the population, mobile payment solutions are an effective way to supply the banking services needed by the people.





Pay your way

Pay for flights in, Indian Rupee,  USD or 70 other currencies of your choice with Alternative Airlines.

Choose from over 18 payment methods, including PayPal, Apple Pay , Fly now Pay later and Alipay


Check out all of our payment methods here.


About Alternative Airlines

Alternative Airlines is an online flight search complete with customer service specialising in booking flights on lesser known airlines and to remote destinations. We offer you a wider choice of airlines supported by a team of customer service and travel specialists for help and advice on your travel plans. We specialise in finding the best available fares on the widest range of airlines and making them available to you online, with prices in the currency of your choice.


Alternative Airlines handles all your travel arrangements and payments, complete with ticketed confirmation. We do not direct you to other websites or service providers. We help you through the process. This is what makes us Alternative Airlines.Check out our reviews: Alternative Airlines - Feefo Reviews


Browse for flights, find some amazing deals, make a reservation and pay in the currency of your choice today with Alternative Airlines. Let Alternative Airlines help find you the best prices and make international and domestic flight reservations with us today.






11th April 2018

M-Pesa and PayPal are partnering to boost e-commerce in Kenya

Safaricom is partnering with PayPal to boost its e-commerce capabilities in Kenya, solidifying its footing not just as a mobile phone business but as a global company with diversified interests in sectors including healthcare, transportation, and music.

The company is collaborating on a new service to enable Kenyan customers seamlessly transfer money between PayPal and Safaricom’s M-Pesa mobile wallets. The move will open global marketplaces to Kenyan entrepreneurs and businesses, effectively allowing M-Pesa’s 22.7 million subscribers to transact online, on mobile, in an app, or in person with PayPal’s 227 million users.

The new service comes just months after Safaricom launched its own e-commerce platform Masoko to take on competitors including Jumia, Pigiame, OLX, and Kilimall International. Kenya has experienced an e-commerce boom, buoyed in part by ubiquitous mobile penetration that currently stands at over 90%, increased smartphone use, and a mobile-first strategy that allows customers to pay for goods and services onlinethrough mobile money services like M-Pesa.

The PayPal partnership also pits Safaricom against other mobile operators and fintech firms like PesaPal who are all focused on bringing the hundreds of thousands of small businesses in Kenya into the digital world. By reducing the barriers to conducting transactions, Safaricom also hopes to broaden its market capitalization by challenging banking institutions like Equity through whom PayPal withdrawals have only been possible in the past. Safaricom will, however, be charging more than double the 1-1.5% transaction fee charged by Equity Bank.

The diversification of M-Pesa as a payment platform also underscores how technological innovation has been central to the mobile money story. When M-Pesa was established in 2007, it kickstarted a mobile money revolution beyond Kenya’s borders. But as adoptions rates peaked, officials recognized the “clumsy” and “far from elegant” nature of the service, saying it was time to plug the e-wallet system into third-party, innovative applications.

Sitoyo Lopokoiyit, the director of financial services at Safaricom, says the latest move is part of a strategy the company has embarked on in the last two years to get more people to do more digital transactions through its mobile money service. This included allowing organizations to securely disburse bulk cash through the SurePay Service, helping rural residents pay for clean water and electricity, launching the ride-hailing app Little and the music streaming service Songa, besides integrating M-Pesa into the Google Play store.

The cooperation with PayPal comes a day before full mobile money interoperability kick-starts in Kenya, allowing customers to send money across mobile networks.

By facilitating faster and more convenient transactions, Lopokoiyit says M-Pesa looks to disrupt not only cross-border payments and merchant transactions but also enable Kenyan businesses on the global stage. For both sellers and buyers, he says, “It’s a fantastic opportunity.”




6th March 2018

Millenials succombing to to M-Pesa

The notorious Google made a decision to allow customers to pay for applications using M-Pesa has buttressed the idea that for multinationals based in Kenya, Safaricom’s mobile money service is the par excellence agent of localisation. For a while, Google mandated that consumers in Kenya had to pay for apps and games bought from its Play Store and Game Store using credit cards, as though they were in developed countries such as the US where there is a widespread use of cards. The use of credit and debit cards in Kenya is not as widespread as mobile money transfer services which, besides M-Pesa, also include Airtel Money, Equity Bank’s Equitel. By restricting payment to credit and debit cards, the Internet giant not only locked out close to 27.8 million users of M-Pesa but also belied Google’s ambition to reach every corner of the earth. 


26th February 2018

Google Play now accepts M-Pesa payments

Google Play apps and games store now accepts payments in Kenya through popular mobile money platform M-Pesa. This is an attempt to boost downloads in a market where many people do not used credit cards. Safaricom, the telecommunication giant behind MPESA said on Thursday that it had partnered with London-based global payments platform provider, DOCOMO Digital, to enable users pay through M-Pesa. “This is very important to the developer ecosystem in markets where credit card penetration is low,” said Mahir Sain, head of Africa Android partnerships at Google, which is owned by Alphabet Inc.


M-Pesa, which enables customers to transfer money and pay bills via mobile phone, has 27.8 million users in the nation of 45 million people where Google’s Android platform dominates. M-Pesa has been mimicked across Africa and in other markets. Safaricom has 13 million smart phones on its network, most of them using the Android platform. Safaricom has been searching for ways to expand M-Pesa for some time, as reported in 2017, but its hands have been tied by the wishes of its parent company, Vodafone, according to The company is much larger than its two main competitors in the local mobile market, with 29.4 million users — 71.9 percent of Kenya’s total market. It is 35 percent-owned by South African group Vodacom and 5 percent-owned by Vodacom’s major shareholder Vodafone.



5th October 2017

M-Pesa rolls out payment tags and wristbands for faster mobile payments

Following successful trials over the last four months in Nakuru, Safaricom (NSE: SCOM) has today announced the availability of M-PESA 1Tap in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Eldoret and Nyeri.

M-PESA 1Tap will be available to all Lipa Na M-PESA merchants and customers and aims to make it faster and easier to make and receive cashless payments. The service also increases the accuracy and privacy of Lipa Na M-PESA by ensuring that payments are delivered to a matching merchant.

“As a trusted, easy and convenient cashless payment solution for more than 70,000 businesses in Kenya, Lipa Na M-PESA is ready to advance to become a more seamless solution. M-PESA 1Tap builds on a strong foundation built on 10 years of learning and feedback from both our customers and merchants. We hope it will transform the world of cashless payments,” said Bob Collymore, CEO, Safaricom. 

M-PESA 1Tap will be progressively rolled out to leading supermarkets, petrol stations, and restaurants.

Some of the merchants where customers can now make payments with M-PESA 1Tap include Shell, Naivas, Choppies, KenolKobil, KFC, Oil Libya, Total and QuickMart. The merchant solution currently involves an NFC based reader integrated to merchants Lipa Na M-PESA tills.

“At Vivo Energy we are always looking for ways of improving the offer we give to the customers. We are therefore in this innovation journey and are glad to partner with Safaricom in giving our customers convenience as they make their purchases,” said David Mureithi, Acting Managing Director Vivo Energy Kenya and Executive Vice President Vivo Energy East and South Region.

Customers will initially have the option of obtaining an M-PESA 1Tap wristband, phone sticker or card which will allow payment integrations with M-PESA 1Tap merchant terminals. More convenient M-PESA 1Tap solutions are set to be rolled out in future. The tags are available from Safaricom shops and dealers from Ksh. 20.

“Naivas has been at the forefront of technology adoption, which is why we are happy to deploy M-PESA 1Tap. We believe it will greatly improve our customer experience by increasing the speed, accuracy and privacy when paying by M-PESA at our outlets,” said Simon Mukuha, Managing Director, Naivas.

To make a payment, a merchant will key in the payment amount into their device, tap the customer tag, and the customer will then key in their PIN on their phone to validate the payment. This cuts down the steps involved from more than eight steps using the M-PESA tool on SIM cards to just one step for the customer.

M-PESA 1Tap was launched in May 2017 in Nakuru County, with more than 90,000 customers and 2,000 merchants taking up the service. Mobile cashless payments have increasingly grown popular in Kenya, with Central Bank of Kenya statistics showing that they accounted for 72.8 percent of cashless payments by value and 88 percent by number of cashless transactions in July 2017.



19th September 2017

Vodafone M-Pesa launches benefits for Maharahstra & Goa circle

Vodafone India through its wallet –M-Pesa has launched talk time plans for its customers in Maharashtra and Goa Circle wherein subscribers can avail full talktime benefits on recharges of Rs. 30, 40, 50, 70, 90 and 100 using the mobile wallet.

The company said there are no restrictions on the number of times the customer recharges his wallet to avail this offer. “With additional talktime benefits ranging from 18-25% of the recharge amount, customers can have huge savings on their mobile recharges with this exclusive offer, only through M-Pesa,” stated the telecom operator.

“Customers are increasingly moving towards mobile wallets and we see many of our customers purchasing mobile recharges instantly and conveniently through our M-Pesa app,” said Ashish Chandra- Business Head, Vodafone Maharashtra & Goa. “ With this offer, we are rewarding every mobile recharge above Rs 30, made through the M-Pesa App with full talktime benefit so that our customers can make more calls for the same amount,” he added.



13th September 2017

Vodafone M-Pesa now offering full talktime on every recharge

Vodafone M-Pesa India has today rolled out a ‘Every time, full talktime’ offer which offers full talktime offer for evry recharge for its pre-paid customers. The prepaid customers can avail full talktime benefit on recharges from Rs 30 to Rs 100, exclusively on Vodafone’s mobile wallet service, M-Pesa. 

There are no limits to the number of times a customer can avail this offer. One can recharge multiple times in a week or even in a day, making every recharge a full talktime recharge. To avail this offer, you have to download M-Pesa App for recharge.

Vodafone M-Pesa is a Mobile Wallet service from Vodafone that offers Money Transfer, Bill & Utility Pay, Merchant payments and Business Solutions (Enterprise Cash Management) enabling instant transfer and receipt of money anytime, from anywhere.

The ‘Every time, full talktime’ offer is also available on recharge through USSD by dialing *400# or through the M-Pesa app & website. Existing Vodafone M-Pesa customers in India can also enjoy full talktime through this offer. With additional talktime benefits ranging from 18-25% of the recharge amount, customers can have huge savings on their mobile recharges with this exclusive offer, only through M-Pesa.

Suresh Kumar - Operations Director, Vodafone India said, “Vodafone has consistently brought innovative and better value offerings to enhance customer experience. We are happy to present the ‘Every time, full talktime’ recharge offer through M-Pesa. Customers are increasingly adopting mobile wallets and we see many of our customers recharging their accounts  instantly and conveniently through our M-Pesa app. With this offer, we are rewarding every mobile recharge above Rs 30, done through the M-Pesa App with Full Talktime benefit so that our customers can make more calls for the same amount.”