After launching to much fanfare in the United States over a year ago, Apple Pay has now made its way to Australia. However, there is a catch. Only American Express card holders will be able to use Apple’s NFC payment system. Supported cards include only those directly issued by American Express and not via a bank.
Earlier this year it was reported that Apple was struggling to make deals with banks for an Australian launch, with fees being the sticking point. However, with its own infrastructure and agreements already in place, American Express was in a great position to head the Australian launch.
Australian iPhone users will need to be running iOS 9 or later to use Apple Pay, and throughout today will find the Wallet app being updated with Apple Pay functionality.
To add a supported card, you need to do the following:
- On your iPhone, open Wallet. On your iPad, go to Settings > Wallet & Apple Pay.
- Tap Add Credit or Debit Card.
- If you have a supported credit or debit card on file with iTunes, enter the card’s security code. Otherwise, use the camera to capture the information on your credit, debit, or store card. Then fill in any additional information needed.
- Tap Next. Your bank will verify your information and decide if you can add your card to Apple Pay. If they need more information, they'll ask you to provide additional verification. You can verify your card any time after you add it. Just return to Wallet on iPhone or Settings > Wallet & Apple Pay on iPad, and follow the steps.
- After your card is verified, tap Next. Then you can start using Apple Pay.
The other caveat to using Apple Pay is that both the merchant and its contactless terminal must support American Express.