Southwest Airlines Mobile App Gains Apple Pay Support

Southwest Airlines has added Apple Pay support to its mobile app, enabling customers to pay for tickets, in-flight meals, baggage options, and other ancillary services using Apple's mobile wallet.


As an alternative payment method to debit and credit cards, Apple Pay offers more security by allowing customers to make transactions without storing their payment details in another commercial database.

In a press release announcing the support, Southwest said the airline's new Apple Pay integration would enable users to "purchase tickets from the carrier's app – with Apple Card if they so choose – and store it in the Wallet for redemption at the gate."
"Providing modern digital payment solutions to our Customers is critical," said Christopher Priebe, Director, Treasury, Payments and Risk at Southwest Airlines. "The launch of Apple Pay enhances our ability to sell flights, as well as ancillary products using one of the most widely-used digital wallets in North America."
The Apple Pay integration is the result of a partnership agreement with Southwest Airlines and digital commerce provider, CellPoint Digital, with help from airline-owned payment network UATP.

The partnership allows airlines to deploy new payment methods quickly using, including major global wallets like Apple Pay, Visa Checkout, WeChat Pay, Alipay, Google Pay or Pay Tm, along with bank transfer, installments and cash-based payment options.


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Apple is ‘Watching Cryptocurrency’ and Wants to Do More With Tipping and Mobile IDs

Apple Pay vice president Jennifer Bailey recently sat down with CNN anchor Christine Romans at a private event in San Francisco to discuss the future of payments, including Apple Pay and the Apple Card.

Apple Pay vice president Jennifer Bailey via CNN Business

As to be expected, Bailey made some boilerplate comments about the security, privacy, and ease of use of both Apple Pay and the Apple Card, but she also touched on cryptocurrency, tipping, and mobile IDs.

On cryptocurrency, Bailey said it is an "interesting" field with "long-term potential":
We're watching cryptocurrency. We think it's interesting. We think it has interesting long-term potential, but we're primarily focused on what consumers are using today… and are happy with. Most people are pretty happy with their debit card as an example. And so helping people do that in a more secure way on our platform and in a more real time way is what we're focused on.
On tipping, Bailey said it is one area where Apple still needs to "work more on that":
We get that feedback a lot from customers about when they start using mobile payments and Apple Pay, they stop carrying cash. And one of the key areas where they would like us to do more is actually in tipping. You'll see in some of the point-of-sale systems now great tipping functionality if you pay with mobile payments, but still that personal touch is one area where we still need to work more on that.
Apple Pay and the Wallet app have already provided digital alternatives to credit and debit cards, student IDs, movie tickets, boarding passes, and more. Asked what the hardest remaining item in a wallet would be to digitize, Bailey said identities, such as a driver's license or a passport:
I think the hardest thing is identity. And the reason is that identity, to be legal, has to be government issued… it has to be authenticated by the government. We see across the globe many countries starting to use mobile to add passport… you might use mobile passport when you're going through airports today. It is moving, and I think it will continue. It's not too far away… it just won't be as fast as some of the other activities we have.
Bailey also confirmed that Apple is "working on" allowing users to export their Apple Card financial data to a budgeting app like Mint.

Related Roundup: Apple Pay

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More Banks Announce Apple Pay Support in the Netherlands

Apple Pay officially launched in the Netherlands in June, but Dutch bank ING was the sole card issuer offering support Apple's digital payment system to the country.


Today, more banks in the Netherlands announced support for Apple Pay. Dutch challenger bank Bunq now shows up in Apple's Wallet when users in the country choose to add a card, as does Monese, N26, and Revolut.

With Apple Pay on iPhone, Apple Watch, iPad and Mac, customers with these banks in The Netherlands can make purchases with their digital wallet in stores, in apps and on websites.


According to Apple's regional Apple Pay web page, Apple Pay can be used in The Netherlands with several online and high street retailers including Adidas, ALDI, Amac, ARKET, BCC, Burger King, Capi, cool blue, COS, Decathlon, Douglas, H&M, Jumbo, Lidl, McDonalds, Starbucks, and others.

Dutch bank ABN AMRO and Rabobank have also informed their customers that they are working to bring Apple Pay to their bank cards and expects this to roll out soon.

(Thanks, Adriaan!)


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Apple Pay Now Available to Danske Bank Customers

Danske Bank, the largest bank in Denmark, today announced it now offers Apple Pay.

Apple Pay is now available to all Danske Bank personal and business customers in Denmark, Sweden, Finland, and Norway, with support for both Visa and Mastercard cards. To set up a card with Apple Pay, open the Wallet app on a compatible iPhone and tap the plus button in the top-right corner.


Once activated, Danske Bank cardholders can use their iPhone or Apple Watch to make purchases at stores that accept contactless payments, as well as on websites and in apps that accept Apple Pay.

Apple Pay launched in Denmark in October 2017, and with Danske Bank now on board, an additional 2.7 million customers now have access to the service in the Nordic region. Apple Pay will be available in more than 40 countries and territories by the end of 2019, according to Apple CEO Tim Cook.

(Thanks, Christian Schweizer and Poy!)

Related Roundup: Apple Pay
Tag: Denmark

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Macau Bank BNU Announces Apple Pay Support

Apple Pay has officially arrived in Macau, a Special Administrative Region of China. Local bank Banco Nacional Ultramarino (BNU) and UnionPay International Hong Kong Branch (UPI) on Monday jointly announced support for Apple's mobile payment platform in the territory.

"BNU cardholders will be able to easily add their UnionPay debit and credit cards to Apple Pay on iPhone, Apple Watch and iPad and Mac for convenient and secure everyday shopping," the bank told Macau News Agency.
The service will allow its clients with Apple devices to make mobile payments in Macau's Greater Bay Area and worldwide, in stores, restaurants, taxis, vending machines and that security and privacy will be of great concern for the service.


Apple CEO Tim Cook said in March that Apple Pay would be available in more than 40 countries and regions by the end of 2019, although Apple's website has yet to be updated with the full list.

Apple Pay first launched in the United States in October 2014. You can view the full list of Apple Pay countries and regions on Apple’s website.

Related Roundup: Apple Pay
Tag: Macau

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Apple Pay Users Can Get Free McDonald’s Fries With Purchase Today

Apple and McDonald's have teamed up to offer free fries every Friday in July.


Today, and on July 19 and July 26, customers can use Apple Pay in the McDonald's app and get free medium fries with a minimum $1 purchase before taxes, excluding any dollar menu items. The promotion is limited to the United States.

This is just one of many Apple Pay promotions that have been offered in recent months.

Related Roundup: Apple Pay

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Hong Kong’s Octopus Transit Card to Support Apple Pay Later This Year [Updated]

Update - Jul 11: Octopus Cards Limited has now confirmed that customers will be able to use their Octopus cards on their iPhone or Apple Watch for transit and retail payment with Apple Pay later this year. Original story below.




iOS 13 may come with built-in support for Hong Kong's Octopus contactless payment system, if a few lines of code discovered on Apple's servers are any indication.

Tech blog Ata Distance spotted the code snippet in Apple's online JSON-based Apple Pay pass identifier (link now removed), which shows references to Octopus in iOS 13.

The discovery also tallies with specific references to Octopus on Apple Pay in the iOS 13 beta, according to the Japan-focused site.

Octopus is based on the same FeliCa NFC standard used for the Japanese Suica card, and is used by the vast majority of Hong Kong residents for making transit payments and retail transactions.


Originally launched in 1997 as a physical contactless card, the FeliCa-based version made the transition to electronic payment solution when the company unveiled Smart Octopus for Samsung Pay in December 2017.

The exclusive deal with Samsung left Apple Pay users without a way to take advantage Smart Octopus, despite it being technically compatible with iPhone 7 and later models, so today's find should make for good news for those hoping to digitize the popular transit and retail payment card, which should also support Apple's Express Transit mode.

iOS 13 for iPhone is expected to be released in the fall.

Related Roundups: Apple Pay, iOS 13, iPadOS

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JCPenney Has Reinstated Apple Pay in All Retail Locations

JCPenney, a popular department store in the United States, this month said that it has reactivated contactless payments options including Apple Pay in all of its retail stores.

The information was shared by a JCPenney support employee on Twitter, who also said that Apple Pay would be accepted in stores starting June 19th. Given that it's now June 27, Apple Pay should be working in JCPenney retail locations once again.


JCPenney earlier this year eliminated support for Apple Pay and other contactless payment options due to an April 13 deadline from Visa for retiring legacy magnetic stripe contactless technology in favor of EMV technology.
A third-party credit card brand made the requirement for all merchants to actively support EMV contactless functionality effective April 13, retiring the legacy MSD contactless technology in place. Given the resources and lead time associated with meeting the new mandate, JCPenney chose to suspend all contactless payment options until a later date. Customers still have the ability to complete their transactions manually by inserting or swiping their physical credit cards at our point-of-sale terminals in stores, an option employed by the vast majority of JCPenney shoppers.
At the time Apple Pay was pulled from retail stores and the JCPenney app, JCPenney did not provide details on if and when it might be reinstated.


Prior to the end of Apple Pay support, JCPenney had offered the payment option since 2015, when it first rolled out to JCPenney stores.

Related Roundup: Apple Pay

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Apple Pay Launches in 13 Additional European Countries

Apple Pay is officially going live in 13 additional countries today, including Greece, Portugal, Romania, and Slovakia, bringing Apple's mobile payment system to millions more users across Europe.



In Slovakia, for example, users can already load cards onto their Apple Wallet from Boon, Edenred, J&T Banka, Monese, N26, Revolut, Slovenska sporitelna, Tatra banka, and mBank.

It's a similar story in many more countries, based on screenshots posted by Apple users on social media this morning.

Apple Pay now also appears to support a number of popular bank cards across Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Estonia, Greece, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Malta, Portugal, Romania, and Slovenia.



Apple Pay has been gradually expanding across Europe and the Middle East, launching in Poland, Norway, Kazakhstan, Belgium, Germany, Czech Republic, Saudi Arabia, Austria, and Iceland over the last year.

The mobile payment system allows iPhone 6, 6s, 6, 7, 8, 6 Plus, 6s Plus, 7 Plus, 8 Plus, SE, X, XS, XS Max, and XR users to make payments for goods and services in retail stores using an NFC chip built into their iPhones.

Apple CEO Tim Cook said in March that Apple Pay would be available in more than 40 countries and regions by the end of 2019, although Apple's website has yet to be updated with the full list. Apple Pay first launched in the United States in October 2014. You can view the full list of Apple Pay countries and regions on Apple’s website.

Related Roundup: Apple Pay
Tag: Europe

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Apple Pay Launches in The Netherlands With Dutch Bank ING

Apple Pay officially went live in The Netherlands today, with Dutch bank ING leading the charge to bring Apple's digital payment system to debit and credit card users in the country.


With Apple Pay on iPhone, Apple Watch, iPad and Mac, ING bank customers with Maestro debit cards in The Netherlands can make purchases with their digital wallet in stores, in apps and on websites.

ING customers can activate Apple Pay in the ING Mobile Banking App and add their debit card to the Wallet. Apple Pay works wherever it is possible to make contactless payments, in web shops and in apps.

According to Apple's regional Apple Pay web page, Apple Pay can be used in The Netherlands with several online and high street retailers including Adidas, ALDI, Amac, ARKET, BCC, Burger King, Capi, cool blue, COS, Decathlon, Douglas, H&M, Jumbo, Lidl, McDonalds, Starbucks, and others.

Apple Pay has been gradually expanding across Europe and the Middle East, launching in Poland, Norway, Kazakhstan, Belgium, Germany, Czech Republic, Saudi Arabia, Austria, and Iceland over the last year. Up until today, The Netherlands was one of the most populous countries in Europe that was still awaiting Apple Pay.

(Thanks, Melvin!)


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