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These days, it seems as though you no longer have to carry your wallet around. As long as you have your mobile device, you can make payments at many different stores and restaurants using payment apps. Not only does this make things very convenient, but it can also be a more secure way to handle payments as opposed to carrying cash and credit cards around. 

Payment technology is certainly on the rise, and more and more people are taking advantage of this innovative way to pay for goods and services. And one platform in particular that is making a splash on the scene is Google Pay. Read on to find out what it is, how to use it, and whether or not your bank supports it.

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What Is Google Pay?

Google Pay is a digital wallet and an online payment system that allows consumers to make payments using their mobile devices. Consumers can use an app downloaded to their phones, tablets, or even smartwatches and simply tap to pay for purchases made at retailers that accept this form of payment.

Basically, Google Pay is a combined Android Pay and Google Wallet. It is a blend of all the different payment methods into one unified digital payment platform. It also combines Google Pay and Google Pay Send, allowing users to take part in both types of transactions with only one app instead of two. 

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How Does Google Pay Work?

Google Pay works with certain credit and debit cards. These accounts are connected to the Google Pay account, so whenever a purchase is made, the tap of a mobile device will allow Google Pay to charge your credit card account without the need to present the plastic in person. Those with a credit card loyalty program will also be able to take advantage of rewards points on their accounts when they use Google Pay to make purchases. 

Google Pay accounts may also be connected to PayPal accounts. 

This method of payment can be used for the following types of purchases:

  • In-person at checkout
  • Online at checkout
  • In-app purchases

In order to use Google Pay for any one of these types of purchases, you will need to first find out if Google Pay is supported. 

When checking out in-person:

Look for the “G Pay” symbol on a contactless payment reader. If there is one, all you need to do is hold your unlocked phone over the terminal until a checkmark appears. 

When checking out online:

Look for the Google Pay purchase button, click it, then type in your shipping information and continue on with your purchase as you normally would with other payment options. 

When checking out through in-app purchase:

Make sure the app you’re looking to purchase from accepts Google Pay. If so, click the Google Pay button and enter your shipping details before you confirm your order.

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Which Phones Are Compatible With Google Pay?

The majority of newer Android smartphones are compatible with Google Pay. More specifically, the device must be running Google Android 4.4 or later in for Google Pay to work. 

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How To Set Up A Google Pay Account?

To use Google Pay, you’ll need to first download the app, then add your credit or debit card. You may also snap a photo of your credit card rather than manually entering its information. Google will need to verify the information first before you can use the digital payment method. 

Do Banks Accept Google Pay In Canada?

Many banks in Canada already support Google Pay, and it’s just a matter of time before more join the bandwagon. At the time of this writing, the following banks in Canada support Google Pay:

  • Royal Bank
  • CIBC
  • BMO
  • Desjardins
  • Scotiabank
  • Tangerine
  • National Bank of Canada
  • President’s Choice Financial
  • ATB
  • Canadian Tire Financial Services
  • UNI Financial Corporation
  • Brim Financial

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Can People Steal My Information If I Use Google Pay? 

Perhaps one of the biggest hangups about consumers using Google Pay – or any other type of mobile payment – is its level of security. Many may wonder if their banking or credit card information can be hacked if they have an app such as Google Pay installed on their phones and used at various retailers. 

The truth is, Google Pay is very secure. As long as certain precautions are taken, Google Pay can actually be safer than carrying around cash or credit cards in your wallet. 

Google Pay uses an encrypted account number that represents your credit account information, which means your account data is not actually stored on your mobile device or on the Google Pay app.

If your phone is ever lost or stolen, the Android Device Manager allows you to lock your phone remotely, change the password, or completely wipe all personal information. This will avoid any unfortunate cases where your phone is used for contactless payments. 

The Google Pay app also allows you to track your payment history. If you notice anything suspicious, you can monitor and flag it right away.

Final Thoughts

Google Pay is certainly the wave of the future. Considering how quickly digital technology is advancing, it should be of no surprise that we have platforms such as Google Pay at our fingertips to make payments without even needing our wallets. This makes payments as easy and convenient as possible. Just make sure to be responsible with your finances, no matter how you make payments. 

Lisa Rennie avatar on Loans Canada
Lisa Rennie

Lisa has been working as a personal finance writer for more than a decade, creating unique content that helps to educate Canadian consumers in the realms of real estate, mortgages, investing and financial health. For years, she held her real estate license in Toronto, Ontario before giving it up to pursue writing within this realm and related niches. Lisa is very serious about smart money management and helping others do the same.

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