The Covid pandemic has increased the adoption of mobile payments among consumers in Ireland with current account providers responding to the demand.
At €4 a month for all your day-to-day banking it isn’t the cheapest account on offer but it’s certainly not the most expensive either! And a key advantage is the good customer service and personal touch that the Credit Union is known and loved for.
And with many consumers no doubt on the lookout for a new current account provider given the planned exits of Ulster Bank and KBC, the Credit Union will be an option on many people’s radar.
However a key shortfall of the account for some was the lack of mobile payment options, which have become an increasingly popular way to pay.
Seeking to change that, back in December the Credit Union launched both Google Pay and Fitbit Pay for all its current account customers.
And now it’s added Apple Pay - meaning the Credit Union now offers the full complement of the most popular mobile payment options.
Technology for the times
Mobile payment options such as Google Pay, Apple Pay, Fitbit Pay and Garmin Pay have become increasingly popular and, rather unfortunately, necessary due to the Covid pandemic as they allow customers to avoid having to carry a card, touch keypads, or even handle and exchange cash.
And recent data from the Banking and Payments Federation Ireland has shown a surge in the use of contactless and mobile payments in recent months, which now make up 47% of in-store payments.
Mobile payments also aren’t subject to the €50 limit that applies to contactless payments made with your physical card, meaning you can tap and pay for whatever you want really!
Banks have been responding to the changed circumstances and increased demand for contactless payments in due course - Bank of Ireland (BOI) launched Google Pay last August, while PTSB, An Post and BOI all launched Apple Pay last November.
And now the Credit Union has gotten on board as well.
Customers can use Apple Pay, Google Pay and Fitbit Pay wherever contactless payments are accepted. You simply hold your mobile phone and/or Fitbit device near a payment terminal to make a payment.
What fees and charges apply?
When it comes to charging, all the providers treat contactless payments made with your physical card, and those made with your phone, the same.
The Credit Union is no different; customers won't be charged any extra for using Apple Pay - it’ll be incorporated into the €4 monthly fee, which also includes chip and pin transactions, online transactions, and direct debits and standing orders.
At the moment Ulster Bank, which as we mentioned is set to exit the Irish market, is the only bank here that charges its current account customers for contactless payments (including mobile payments from Apple and Google Pay), but at just 1 cent per transaction it shouldn't break the bank!
Get in touch
Are you a fan of mobile payments and have you been using less cash since the start of the pandemic?
And what do you think of today's announcement from the Credit Union?
Let us know in the comments below!