If you’ve been eagerly awaiting the release of Apple’s mobile payment system, the big moment has arrived. But you might be wondering: American Express and Apple Pay — will I be able to use my credit card?
Good news — the answer is yes! When Apple Pay becomes active in October 2014, you can count on being able to use your American Express credit card to pay with just one touch (if you have an iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus, of course). Ready to learn more? Let’s take a look at the details. We’ll also highlight a few of our favorite credit cards from American Express below.
About Apple Pay
When Apple Pay was announced at the company’s big unveiling event on Sept. 9, 2014, most folks in the technology world reacted with excitement, but not surprise. The mobile payment service was hotly anticipated, and now that it’s finally coming online, many expect it to change the way we pay forever.
If you’re not familiar with how Apple Pay works, it’s fairly straightforward: First, you’ll load your payment and store loyalty cards into the Passbook application. Reportedly, this will simply involve taking a picture of each of your cards and uploading it to the app. If you typically use one card to pay for most of your purchases, you can select it as the default when you put its information into Passbook.
Then, if you’re shopping in a store that supports Apple Pay (see below), you’ll hold your iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus in close proximity to the payment terminal and make your payment with a tap of your finger. This touch will both verify your identity using Touch ID technology and authorize the card you’ve selected to be charged.
Because Apple Pay works with payment terminals by using near field communication (NFC) technology and comes with several layers of security built into each transaction, most experts expect it to be a safer way to pay than our current swipe-and-sign system.
As of October 2014, Apple Pay will be accepted at over 220,000 brick-and-mortar retailers nationwide, including:
- Whole Foods
You’ll also be able to use Apple Pay with some popular apps, including:
A few of our favorite credit cards from American Express
Not all credit card issuers are on board with Apple Pay just yet, but American Express credit card customers won’t have to wait. You’ll be able to use the new mobile payment system as soon as it comes online, assuming you’ve purchased an iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus, too.
And remember, you don’t have to worry about missing out on rewards when you use your American Express card with Apple Pay. Every time you authorize a mobile payment, it’s just as if you’d swiped the card. You’ll keep racking up the points or cash back every time you touch!
The Nerds weren’t yet able to confirm with American Express whether all of their consumer cards will be Apple Pay compatible, so be sure to check with them if you have questions. In the meantime, here are a few of our favorite credit cards from American Express:
Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express
The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express is one of our favorite hotel credit cards on the market today, and it’s easy to see why. With it, you’ll earn up to 5 Starpoints for every dollar spent at Starwood hotels and resorts, and 1 Starpoint for every dollar spent on other purchases. When redeemed for hotel stays, the Nerds estimate that each Starpoint is worth a whopping 2.3 cents apiece – that’s nothing to sneeze at, so if you stay in hotels frequently, this card is definitely one to consider. Also, you have the opportunity to transfer your Starpoints to airline frequent flyer programs, so you’re not limited to using them just at hotels.
With the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express, you’ll get started with a pretty nice signup bonus: Earn 25,000 bonus Starpoints® after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months. Terms Apply. The annual fee is $0 for the first year, then $95.
The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express
The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express provides a good opportunity to earn exclusive Membership Rewards points on everyday purchases, so if this is something you’re interested in, it might be the card for you. With it, you’ll earn 2 Membership Rewards points for every dollar spent at U.S. supermarkets (up to $6,000 spent per year) and one Membership Rewards point for every dollar spent elsewhere. Plus, you’ll get a 20% points bonus if you make at least 20 transactions in a billing cycle.
When it comes time to redeem your rewards, you can use them for travel, merchandise, gift cards, and more. The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express also provides a small sign-up bonus: Earn 10,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases in your first 3 months. Terms Apply Its annual fee is $0, but keep in mind that there is an annual fee version of the card that provides a higher rewards rate. Be sure to compare both cards before making a final decision.
iPhone 6 image via Shutterstock