So, Android Pay launched today, and you’ve discovered that the carer of your money, your bank, either doesn’t support Android Pay yet, or worse, doesn’t have any plans to. We’ve heard that Commonwealth Bank has no plans to support Android Pay (because it has its own proprietary solution), and National Australia Bank appears to be in the same boat. How disappointing.
@chan478 Right now there is no news but our community will be among the first to know when we have an update on Apple and Android Pay. ^Lee
— CommBank (@CommBank) July 13, 2016
@cooperellidge Hi Cooper, at this stage Westpac & the St.George Banking Group are intending to launch Android Pay later this year. 1/2
— Westpac Bank (@Westpac) July 14, 2016
NAB won’t even tweet about Android Pay, instead pointing customers at its NAB Pay product, which doesn’t support all its cards. Brilliant.
What if you bank with one of these banks, or if you bank with a smaller credit union or other financial institution that isn’t one of the supported banks? Well, you’re not entirely out of luck. Of course, you can change banks, but this can be a bit of a task; I’ve just recently finished doing this, in fact, so that I could move my banking to ANZ to take advantage of Android Pay. This was perhaps a little easier for me than it might be for you — I don’t have a mortgage with my bank, nor any loans, just a couple of transaction and savings accounts, and a credit card.
However, if changing banks isn’t an option for you, or you just can’t be bothered to jump through those hoops to take advantage of Android Pay, don’t give up — there might be another option.
Chances are, like most people using Tap n Pay, you’re using it for day to day purchases, like buying your coffee, fuel, maybe a small grocery shop or the like. If you can manage your spending appropriately, the best option for you might be to get a low-rate credit card from one of the supported banks.
Take ANZ for example; they offer the ‘ANZ First‘ credit card. We’re not going to go into the relative merits of ANZ’s cards vs the other banks, except to note that
- It’s from ANZ, a supported Android Pay partner
- It’s a Visa card, which works with Android Pay (MasterCard doesn’t yet, on ANZ at least) and is widely accepted (unlike an AmEx) and
- It doesn’t cost you much to have
If you were to take up one of these cards, you don’t need to move your banking, and you can pair it with Android Pay to use for your daily purchases like coffee, your lunch, filling up the car or whatever. You can avoid paying interest if you pay off the balance in full each month, which you can easily do with a direct debit authority from your existing bank account held elsewhere.
By doing this, you can use Android Pay and keep your banking with whichever bank you like, and at the end of each month, your balance will simply come out of your nominated transaction account. Of course, you may find that moving banks entirely is preferable to opening a credit card account, but this might be one of the easiest ways to get on board with Android Pay in just a few days.