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Apple Pay in the UK: How to use Apple Pay with iPhone and Apple Watch

We explain how Apple Pay works in the UK, including transaction limits, supported devices and supported cards


How do I use Apple Pay?

First, you need to associate at least one card with your Apple Pay account, which can be a debit or credit card. The following banks support Apple Pay:

  • American Express
  • Barclays
  • First Direct
  • HSBC
  • Halifax
  • Lloyds
  • MBNA
  • M&S
  • NatWest
  • Nationwide Building Society
  • Royal Bank of Scotland
  • Santander
  • Tesco Bank
  • TSB
  • Ulster Bank

To use in store, you need a shop that has a contactless card reader (look out for the contactless logo) and a device with an NFC chip in it (iPhone 6iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus and the Apple Watch – and presumably in the iPhone 7 and Apple Watch 2 when they launch later this week) The store must also support the credit card type that you’re trying to use: you can’t use American Express, for example, in a shop that doesn’t normally take it.

Contactless logo

How to add a credit card to Apple Pay on an iPhone or iPad

  1. To add a credit card to your iPhone or iPad, you need to launch Wallet.
  2. Tap the ‘+’ icon next to Apple Pay to add a new card and click next. You can now use your phone’s camera to line up the on-screen window with your credit card and the long number and expiry date will be read automatically.
  3. Tap Next to continue and enter your name as it appears on the card, then tap Next.
  4. You’ll now need to enter your card’s security number (the three digits on the back of a Visa/Mastercard, or the four digits on the front of an American Express card). If the camera couldn’t read the expiry date, enter it manually.
  5. Tap Next and you may be prompted to authenticate your card, either by a code sent to your phone or by calling the card issuer. Once done it will take a few minutes for the card to be activated for use, and you’ll be prompted when it’s ready.
  6. You can repeat these steps to add as many cards as you like. To set one as the default, you need to go to Settings -> Passbook & Apple Pay (Wallet & Apple Pay in iOS 9) and tap the Default button. You can now choose which card you want to use as your default payment method.

Add Credit Card to Apple Pay iPhone

How to add a card to Apple Pay on the Apple Watch

  1. To add cards open up the Watch app on your phone and then tap Wallet.
  2. All of the cards that you’ve added to your phone are listed here, so tap Add next to the ones that you want to add to your Watch.
  3. You’ll need to enter the card’s security number and you may have to go through the same authentication (text message or phone call).
  4. If you want to add a card to your Watch only, tap Add Different Credit or Debit Card and then follow the iPhone instructions above.

Add credit card to Apple Pay Watch

How to use Apple Pay in store: iPhone

  1. To use Apple Pay in a shop is easy. If you want to use your default card, hold your finger over the Touch ID sensor (don’t click the home button) and hold your iPhone over the contactless terminal. 
  2. The payment will be authenticated immediately. If you want to use a different card, hold your iPhone up to the reader to bring up the Apple Pay screen.
  3. Swipe left and right to choose the card that you want to pay with and then hold your finger over Touch ID (don’t click) to pay.

Apple Pay - paying in store

You can also choose to pre-authorise your card, which is handy if you’re using Apple Pay somewhere where time is important. For example, if you pay by Apple Pay on the Tube, you don’t want to spend a lot of time at a gate fiddling around with your phone, while hoards of angry commuters are standing around behind you. To pre-authorise a spending card you have two options.

First, with the phone off double-click the Home Button and then leave a Touch ID-registered finger on the button. This will fire up your preferred card and authorise it to be used with the next card reader you tap your phone against.

Secondly, you can double-click the Touch ID button, but this time don’t leave your finger resting on it. This lets you select the card you want to use from your phone’s Wallet. Once you’ve got the card that you want, just hold your finger to the Touch ID sensor and it will be authorised for use with the next card reader that you tap your phone against.

How to use Apple Pay in store: Watch

  1. Using the Watch to pay in store is really simple. Double Tap the side button (just below the Digital Crown) to bring up your default credit card.
  2. If you want to select a different card, just swipe left or right. 
  3. Finally, just hold your Watch up to the contactless terminal and the transaction will be confirmed.

Apple Pay - Watch pay in store

How to use Apple Pay in app

  1. When you get through the payment option screen, select Apple Pay. 
  2. You can choose your credit card from the list (not all are activated for in-app transactions), and you may have to fill out some details the first time you use it (billing address, delivery address, phone number and so on).
  3. When everything’s ready, just hold your finger up to Touch ID and you’re away.

Apple Pay in-app

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