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How Do I Find Out If Apple Pay Is Available At My Favorite Store?

Apple Pay is an exciting new mobile payment technology that could soon take the retail world by storm. But of the 9 million stores that currently accept credit and debit cards, how many will adopt Apple Pay? And equally important, how can you determine whether or not your favorite shops and restaurants accept the new technology?

As of right now, there is no official list.

But Apple Pay is already off to a great start. Before launching its mobile payment platform, Apple secured agreements with more than 220,000 retailers and restaurants across the country. On its site, the company lists some of the biggest players already on board, including:

  • Whole Foods
  • McDonald’s
  • Staples
  • Subway
  • Walgreens
  • Macy’s
  • Nike
  • The Disney Store

But it would be a mistake to think that this star-studded list reflects the entire retail market. For example, neither Best Buy nor Wal-Mart has any plans to begin accepting Apple Pay. And there are plenty of other major retailers who remain on the fence.

So with no official list, how do you find out if your favorite store accepts Apple's mobile payment technology?

You basically have two options.

Option 1 – Look for the Logo

If you are a regular credit card user, you're probably already accustomed to looking for the Visa, MasterCard or AmEx logos whenever you shop.

Mobile payment solutions have their own special logo (similar to the Wi-Fi symbol turned on its side).

Whenever you see this logo, it means that the store has near field communication (NFC) terminals that are able to read Apple Pay technology. These contactless payment terminals are similar to Bluetooth devices, except that data is transferred over much shorter distances — which is precisely what you want when making a secure payment.

Option 2 – Ask

Because merchants must invest in these more expensive NFC terminals, they're likely to display the accompanying logos prominently. Just as with Visa or MasterCard decals, you shouldn't have to search very hard.

But what if you don't see any NFC logos?

The best thing to do is to simply ask whether or not the store accepts Apple Pay.

If they do, you're golden.

If they don’t, ask the store why not.

You’ll probably get one of two answers:

1. It’s Not Safe

Some merchants might cite security concerns with contactless payments. NFC readers are not 100 percent mainstream, and many merchants still feel uncomfortable with the technology. If your favorite shop has yet to make the transition for security reasons, have the store manager read:

2. It’s Too Hard (or Expensive)

Other stores wrongly believe that NFC terminal updates are costly — or that implementing Apple Pay is too difficult. If you run into this excuse, have the manager read:

If you ever come across other excuses, let us know. Who knows, we could help to convince your favorite stores of the many benefits that come with integrating NFC technology into their payment infrastructure.

Topics: Mobile Payments

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