Implement mobile contactless payments directly

Would it be possible to update the app so that it implements contactless payments directly rather than needing a debit card registered under Google or Apple pay? This would let people start paying as soon as they opened their account instead of having to wait for their debit card to arrive, and would avoid having two sets of notifications pop up for the same transaction.

Barclaycard implment this in their app:

When you open an account now, you already can add your first virtual card to Apple or GPay without having to wait for the physical card to arrive.

And, certainly on Apple Pay (which I use), you can disable the notifications from it so that you only receive the Monzo notifications.


I think I read somewhere before that the ability to add the card to all the Pays before your card shows up depends on how sure Monzo are of their verification. If you don’t pass some internal threshold then you’ll have to wait for your card before you can even look at the app. Maybe that’s changed, but I can only see it getting stricter for everyone, given the FCA stuff going on

This is one of the reasons why this idea would never be implemented; not to mention that it’s less elegant, and can’t be implemented on iPhone


Well, I can only speak from my experience with Starling but there it seems to be not only possible, but standard.

You can add your Starling card to your Apple Pay or Google Pay mobile wallet straight from the Starling app, even before your physical debit card arrives. This is also very useful if your physical card is ever stolen or lost, and you cancel and order a replacement card. As soon as you’ve ordered it, you can re-add your new card to Apple Pay or Google Pay. So you can continue spending, before the physical card arrives in the post.

Barclaycards implementation is terrible to be fair. It takes over as the default payment app, meaning if you want to use any other card. You have to then enable GooglePay as the default app.

I hate it.


Yeah, this is another one of those Monzo quirks I place in the not quite sure why they do this box.

I remember folks saying you can add to GPay/Apple Pay prior to receiving the card, then my brother signed up and we never could find that option. @ndrw’s explanation makes a whole lot of sense in his case.

Again, if Starling can do it, why are Monzo throwing up some excuse for not doing it? Or are we expecting to see a crackdown on Starling’s ability to do this too?

It’s complete speculation at this point, but Starling aren’t being investigated by the FCA, so it could be Monzo tightening the checks. Starling went live as a bank from the get go, so perhaps their systems were a bit more watertight/they check addresses differently?

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Seems like another classic Monzo bleating of “it’s all too difficult” whilst Revolut (and Starling, to a certain extent) just get on with it. cf. top-ups using Apple Pay, offers and discounts, cash pay-in and stuff.

With Monzo it always seems to me to be about short-term gains taking priority over long-term planning. Like when Monzo introduced Pots, then had to completely re-engineer them from the ground up when joint accounts were created, because Pots were originally attached to a person entity, not an account entity. A classic example of Monzo staff not really understanding how ‘banks’ work.

Which brings me back to my view on Monzo’s KYC/money laundering security, which was never up to par.


You obously have never had this hold up queues in work canteens as someone uses barclays and has a android phone.

Even chip and pin is quicker


This is a fascinating one, not least of all due to the fact Monzo employees have as good as called some of Revolut’s more nifty aspects as something the regulations wouldn’t allow if they were a bank. For instance the ability to reset the contactless limit before pin in the app at any time.

Will be very interesting to see if that holds when Revolut get their licence. It’s a good, secure, solution with less hassle.


I’ve never used the Barclaycard app in this way, so maybe it would be better for the Monzo app to add the card details to Google/Apple pay. It just seems a bit wrong to me that they have a slick appliaction process where you can have your account open in 10 minutes, but then have to wait almost a week for the debit card to arrive before you can use contactless payments on your phone.

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My son opened an account 2 weeks ago and got his card the next day

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Well you could back in 2018 but it looks like something changed

Anyway as @Rat_au_van pointed out it’s usually next day so you’re a bit unlucky waiting almost seven.

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Thing is that regulations are very rarely so clear cut. Almost always open to interpretation.So I suspect its more a case of Revolut’s lawyers having a more aggressive interpretation of the regulations than Monzo - which I think ties back into what @j06 said: Monzo like to complain and point left, right, and everywhere when there is a problem. It’s always someone else’s fault, too complicated, too risky, whatever. While other banks just get on with it.

It’s a bit like some devs when faced with a bug in browser A put a notice up saying “optimised for browser b” and call it a day, whereas other devs sit down and implemented a fix/workaround for browser A’s bug. Should it be the dev’s job to work around bugs in a browser? Probably not. Does it make economic sense to develop a workaround? probably not. But is it a better experience for the user? Certainly.


Barclaycard works fine with my Apple Pay. I wasn’t downloading their payments app as I don’t have a bank account with them :sweat_smile:

Apple don’t allow 3rd parties to access the NFC chip as far as I’m aware. So Barclaycard or any other bank can’t offer an alternative payment wallet like on Android

That makes sense, every day is a learning day :yum:

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You can turn off notifications in Apple wallet for that card, as Monzo will notify you anyway of the transaction, then you only get one notification :slight_smile: