Apple Pay limit to increase to GBP 100 from October 15 in UK

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UK Finance announced a new GBP 100 spending limit when using contactless payments, including Apple Pay, to go into effect on October 15.

The current limit is GBP 45 when using contactless payments, and depending on the merchant, this limit can be applied to Apple Pay. In this context, contactless payments refers to using an NFC-enabled card with no security pin.

According to the report from UK Finance, Apple Pay and Google Pay should be available as an alternative to contactless card payments. However, some registers will treat Apple Pay as a contactless payment and apply the limit regardless.

"Contactless payment has proved very popular with consumers and an increasing number of transactions are being made using contactless technology," said Chief Executive of UK Finance, David Postings. "The increase in the limit to GBP100 will allow people to pay for higher value transactions like their weekly shop or filling up their car with fuel. The payments industry has worked hard to put in place the infrastructure to enable retailers to update their payments systems so they can start to offer their customers this new higher limit."

The limit is meant to protect users from fraud since using an NFC card requires no security verification. At GBP 45, thieves are less likely to attempt stealing a card for fraud use, at GBP 100 less so.

Apple Pay and other secure payment methods like chip and pin are not supposed to trigger the limit since security verification is taking place. However, some payment terminals do not recognize Apple Pay as a separate payment method from NFC cards, and so decline payments over the limit.

Customers should look for the Apple Pay sticker at registers to verify support. Otherwise, purchases may be subject to the limit.

The GBP 100 limit goes into effect on October 15, 2021.