On October 15, the UK Finance Department announced a new GBP 100 expenditure limit for contactless payments, including Apple Pay.
When utilizing contactless payments, the current maximum is GBP 45, and depending on the merchant, this restriction may also apply to Apple Pay. Contactless payments refer to using an NFC-enabled card without a security pin in this context.
Apple Pay and Google Pay should be accessible as an alternative to contactless card purchases, according to a study from UK Finance. Some registers, on the other hand, will interpret Apple Pay as a contactless payment and apply the restriction accordingly.
“Contactless payment has proven to be highly popular with customers, and an increasing number of transactions are being performed using this technology,” said David Postings, Chief Executive of UK Finance. “People will be able to pay for higher-value transactions such as their weekly groceries or filling up their car with petrol thanks to the rise in the cap to GBP100. The payments sector has worked hard to put in place the infrastructure that will allow merchants to upgrade their payment systems and begin offering this new higher limit to their consumers.”
Because using an NFC card does not need any security verification, the restriction is intended to protect consumers from fraud. Thieves are less likely to try to take a card for fraud use at GBP 45, and even less so at GBP 100.
Since security verification is taking place, Apple Pay and other secure payment methods like chip and pin are not expected to trigger the restriction. Some payment terminals, on the other hand, do not recognize Apple Pay as a separate payment mechanism from NFC cards, and so reject payments that exceed the limit.
To ensure that Apple Pay is supported, customers should look for the Apple Pay sticker at cash registers. Purchases made otherwise may be subject to the limit.
On October 15, 2021, the GBP 100 restriction will take effect.