Apple Pay today makes its debut in the United Kingdom, nine months after it launched in the U.S., and it has been greeted by plenty of support from local banks. Those with a supported device can register their credit and debit cards now through the Passbook app on iOS.
Apple Pay is available at more than 250,000 retailers throughout England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland that accept contactless payments, but you’ll need a device with NFC to use it.
Those with NFC include the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus, and Apple Watches connected to an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, iPhone 5, iPhone 5c, and iPhone 5s. Apple Pay can also be used to make in-app purchases on these devices — and on an iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3.
A long list of banks and credit card companies will be supporting Apple Pay in the U.K., but not all will be available immediately. Those that are available at launch include American Express, MBNA, Nationwide, NatWest, Royal Bank of Scotland, Santander, and Ulster Bank.
Those that will support Apple Pay in the U.K. later on include Bank of Scotland, First Direct, Halifax, HSBC, Lloyds Bank, M&S Bank, and TSB. Barclays has also announced it will support the service “in the future,” despite its apparent decision not to initially.
We are really excited about the launch of Apple Pay and will bring Barclays debit cards and Barclaycard credit cards to Apple Pay in future.
— Barclays UK (@BarclaysUK) July 14, 2015
Apple Pay first arrived in the U.S. last October with support from 220,000 retailers, and in its first three days of availability, more than 1 million credit cards were registered. The service is expected to be just as popular in the U.K., where NFC payment terminals are already commonplace.
However, U.K. customers will find that just like other contactless payment services, Apple Pay can only be used for transactions up to £20 in most locations. Retailers that allow payments above that limit include Apple, Boots, H&M, Jack & Jones, Louis Vuitton, Marks & Spencer, Vodafone, Pandora, and others.