Locating NFC Merchants
Not all merchants accept NFC payments yet. Though contactless mobile payments are catching on in popularity, a store still needs a compatible card reader before customers can pay with their smartphones. To find out what stores in your area accept NFC payments, use one of the following sites or applications to search for merchants close by. This is especially useful when you’re on vacation or traveling in an area you’re unfamiliar with.
Google Wallet has its own store locator for finding where the technology currently works. First enter your zip code or select “Search current location” to search based on your computer’s current location. Next browse the map that appears and click the lettered marks showing which stores use NFC technology. Select your destination to find out its address. Scroll down for a list of companies that use Google Wallet and a list of those who plan to incorporate it in the near future. Some merchants only allow payments from your smartphone while others allow you to make payments, redeem coupons, and earn rewards points all at once on your phone. Google indicates which businesses are which on the map.
MasterCard PayPass offers two ways to locate merchants that support their PayPass cards. The first is through their website. The PayPass Merchant Locator is similar to Google Wallet’s locator. First enter your address or the zip code where you want to find stores accepting MasterCard PayPass payments. You can narrow down your search results by choosing what category you’re looking for, such as automotive or fast food. Searching by store name is also allowed. After clicking “Find Merchants,” you’ll see a map showing your location and the merchants nearby that accept PayPass. Choose a location to print its address or to send a text message with the address to your smartphone.
PayPass also offers an Android app to download onto your smartphone. This lets you search for merchants on the go without ever having to log on to your computer. The app lets you search near you or near a chosen location. The simple set up shows a map of the area and lets you pull up directions to your chosen merchant’s location.
If you don’t have time to search for a merchant in your area or you’ve already arrived at the store and are wondering if they accept smartphone payments, look at the card reader. If you see a Google Wallet or MasterCard PayPass logo, your smartphone payments will work there. The NFC logo is also displayed on compatible card readers, often as a hand waving a credit card or simply as the letters “NFC.”