UPDATE: Some users have reported that Revolut was not allowing them to add cards to their Google Pay accounts in Malta. So, your mileage may vary. Users whose cards are already added will still work fine. This was working as intended at the moment of writing.
Unless you have been living under a rock, you’ll know that Apple Pay is now supported in Malta, through Revolut. But little did Android users know that Google Pay has been supported by Revolut for more than a year now!
According to an article on Android Police, around mid-July 2018, Revolut rolled out support for Google Pay. This means that using any NFC enabled Android device, you can start paying locally with your phone!
What is Revolut?
Revolut is an online bank based in the UK – you can get a free debit card to be used locally and comes with a great Android app. It’s the only card that works with Google Pay in Malta – BOV, HSBC, BNF and any other local bank do not support Google Pay, so Revolut is your only choice in this case. You can sign up with Revolut for free here (note that with each successful sign-up, I get a small kick-back, as described here).
How to I get Google Pay?
Easy – using your Android Phone, just search for Google Pay on Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.apps.walletnfcrel
Can’t find the app on the store, or it says something like “This app is incompatible with all of your devices”? Just download the APK from some APK Mirror, like https://apkpure.com/google-pay-pay-with-your-phone-and-send-cash/com.google.android.apps.walletnfcrel. Of course, side-loading applications can be risky so proceed with caution.
How do I add my card?
Adding the card is very easy – just follow the setup on screen. If you ever used your Revolut card with Google, you’ll find it right there. If not, just add your details. Have your Card No, Expiry Date and CVV at hand though. You’ll need to confirm a code by SMS as well. No screenshots for this section as Google Pay doesn’t allow you to take screenshots when adding cards. You can find a video guide here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zS6aR22QZM
Anything I should know?
Yes – keep in mind that these transactions are considered Online transactions. Therefore, you’ll need to enable Online Transactions in the Card Security section. Don’t worry, if it’s turned off by default, Revolut will warn you about this.
How will my transactions appear?
This is the nice part – they will show up like all other transactions. The payment will not be towards Google; it will point to the retailer you’ve just purchased from.
How can I use Google Pay to pay?
Very easy! Firstly, make sure that NFC is turned on. Then, just unlock your phone and tap the payment machine when the retailer asks you to do so. Your phone will vibrate when you get tour phone close enough and Google Pay will activate itself. You may be asked to verify your identity, such as by supplying a PIN, Fingerprint or lock pattern. By, the way, lock patterns are bad and you should avoid them.