The rumors that surfaced on Monday were right: Apple pay did indeed launch in Canada today. The launch is much more limited than what we’ve seen in other markets, such as the U.S. and the U.K., however. Apple Pay in Canada is only supported by American Express right now.
That just means that you need to have an American Express card tied to the account in your phone, however, instead of using your bank-issued card or a credit card of your choice. Merchants around Canada can support the service at their own discretion, and PhoneScoop noted that some initial locations include McDonald’s, Staples and Petro Canada.
There’s no word on why Apple Pay in Canada only allows American Express at this time, though earlier rumors suggested Apple has struggled to get local credit cards and banks on board with its technology. That usually comes down to arguments over who-pays-who and security issues. Back in April, for example, The Wall Street Journal said Apple had been trying to court Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Bank of Nova Scotia, Bank of Montreal, Royal Bank of Canada, National Bank of Canada and Toronto-Dominion Bank, though the banks were apparently “concerned about security vulnerabilities” and “fee proposals,” The Wall Street Journal said at the time.
If you own an Amex card and an iPhone 6/iPhone 6 Plus or newer, you should be all set to get started now. We’ll let you know if additional banks come on board.