Southwest Airlines integrates Apple Pay for tickets, meals and more

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in iOS
Southwest Airlines this week integrated Apple Pay transaction support in its mobile app, allowing customers to purchase tickets, in-flight meals, baggage options and more with Apple's payment service.




As of Wednesday, Apple Pay now shows up in the Southwest Airlines app, offering users an alternative to traditional credit and debit card payments, and existing support for PayPal. The airline announced the new customer service offering in a press release.

"Providing modern digital payment solutions to our Customers is critical," said Christopher Priebe, Director, Treasury, Payments and Risk at Southwest Airlines. "The launch of Apple Pay enhances our ability to sell flights, as well as ancillary products using one of the most widely-used digital wallets in North America."

The latest Apple Pay integration is made possible through a multi-year partnership between Southwest and digital payments firm CellPoint Digital, along with the assistance of airline-owned payment network UATP. A deal inked in June 2018 integrated CellPoint's alternative payments hub with UATP's Ceptor payment platform.

With CellPoint, airlines have access to payments systems run by 350 partners, including digital wallet solutions Apple Pay, Visa Checkout, WeChat Pay, Alipay and Google Pay.

Like other major airlines, Southwest integrates a number of mobile technologies, like Wallet, in its iOS app. With the new Apple Pay functionality, users can purchase tickets from the carrier's app -- with Apple Card if they so choose -- and store it in Wallet for redemption at the gate.

Southwest has partnered with Apple in the past, offering travelers iPads as a form of in-flight entertainment and, more recently, providing free streaming access to Apple Music predecessor Beats Music in 2014.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 18
    macguimacgui Posts: 1,464member
    I don't fly much but this is what I like to see– more merchants using Apple Pay. It's fine that Apple is continually adding banks to the Apple Pay fold, but it doesn't do much good if merchants don't follow through.


    razorpit
  • Reply 2 of 18
    I’ve spent the summer in a small town in British Columbia, Canada. I was shocked how many businesses, large and small, and customers use phone tap payments.  Restaurants bring a phone tap device to your table that even does tip calculations. And when I use my IPhone/Apple Watch pay, no signing bills.  You can even tap your IPhone at gas pumps.  I reside in Houston, Texas—4th largest city in the USA—and do NOT have that almost total access to IPhone payment options, especially the gas station, restaurants, take-out. Even big department stores don’t do any phone pay in Houston. Canada is very tech savvy, much more than most places in the USA from what I’ve seen. I love it!
    chialostkiwi
  • Reply 3 of 18
    SoliSoli Posts: 9,270member
    BBirdy said:
    I’ve spent the summer in a small town in British Columbia, Canada. I was shocked how many businesses, large and small, and customers use phone tap payments.  Restaurants bring a phone tap device to your table that even does tip calculations. And when I use my IPhone/Apple Watch pay, no signing bills.  You can even tap your IPhone at gas pumps.  I reside in Houston, Texas—4th largest city in the USA—and do NOT have that almost total access to IPhone payment options, especially the gas station, restaurants, take-out. Even big department stores don’t do any phone pay in Houston. Canada is very tech savvy, much more than most places in the USA from what I’ve seen. I love it!
    What department stores are you referring?
  • Reply 4 of 18
    How much will Southwest save using Apple Pay for transactions?
  • Reply 5 of 18
    Actually they don’t advertise it but currently Apple Music streams for free on Southwest.
    pscooter63lostkiwi
  • Reply 6 of 18
    BBirdy said:
    I’ve spent the summer in a small town in British Columbia, Canada. I was shocked how many businesses, large and small, and customers use phone tap payments.  Restaurants bring a phone tap device to your table that even does tip calculations. And when I use my IPhone/Apple Watch pay, no signing bills.  You can even tap your IPhone at gas pumps.  I reside in Houston, Texas—4th largest city in the USA—and do NOT have that almost total access to IPhone payment options, especially the gas station, restaurants, take-out. Even big department stores don’t do any phone pay in Houston. Canada is very tech savvy, much more than most places in the USA from what I’ve seen. I love it!
    Where you go shopping? Or get your gas from? I am from Houston and yes they do have NFC  at the pump specially new gas stations Try Exxon, Chevron, Buc-ee’s, 

    if you mean by “big department stores” Macy’s like stores yes, they take Apple Pay. JCP stopped back in April nationwide.

    but if you mean “discount stores” like Walmart, that’s not happening after failing miserably with CurrentC and now seems they still want to stick with Walmart Pay

    I get the feeling that they are tech savvy but the truth is that like Europe they have been doing contactless for years at least with cards. In the USA we are still getting these sort of hybrid cards now that have everything (mag strip, chip, contactless) delaying rolling out NFC payments.  Retail in general wont do it unless they are forced to,  remember including the chips on the cards in 2015? They just did it because of the “EMV liability shift” so they didn’t have any other choice than upgrade to EMV terminals.

    Nice for Southwest moving into that direction, we need Apple Pay everywhere. When I travel to Europe/Asia I just use Apple Pay or at some train stations that I have to use my Barclay or BoA card with pin because YES we still haven’t  move 100% to chip/pin. So funny some cashiers are like wth I haven’t seen a card requesting a signature in years and have to hunt for a pen.
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 7 of 18
    Apple_Bar said:
    JCP stopped back in April nationwide.
    But once they updated their point-of-sale systems, JCP turned Apple Pay back on a couple months ago.
    robertwalter
  • Reply 8 of 18
    SBB (Swiss Federal Railways) has AP in their app approaching two years now. Can order from a local bus ticket to a cross country bus train etc excursion in the SBB app and pay for it all with AP. 
    lostkiwi
  • Reply 9 of 18
    BBirdy said:
    I’ve spent the summer in a small town in British Columbia, Canada. I was shocked how many businesses, large and small, and customers use phone tap payments.  Restaurants bring a phone tap device to your table that even does tip calculations. And when I use my IPhone/Apple Watch pay, no signing bills.  You can even tap your IPhone at gas pumps.  I reside in Houston, Texas—4th largest city in the USA—and do NOT have that almost total access to IPhone payment options, especially the gas station, restaurants, take-out. Even big department stores don’t do any phone pay in Houston. Canada is very tech savvy, much more than most places in the USA from what I’ve seen. I love it!
    I live in NYC, which is — similar to Houston — a strangely technological backwater, but have spent a bit of time in Miami, FL lately, where Apple Pay and modern terminals are freaking everywhere. 

    NYC has a weird sort of inertia, there's so much infrastructure that change feels impossible until it happens. How Miami got modern… I have no idea, maybe so many tourists that convenience has a stronger impact on the bottom line? Anyway, I don't think it's a USA vs Canada thing.
  • Reply 10 of 18

    How much will Southwest save using Apple Pay for transactions?
    I dunno if they'll save much, but they'll certainly make more money. 

    Every time I fly and consider some kind of perk — wifi, a glass of wine, whatever — the notion of bothering to dig out my credit card and sit through the swipe and sign a slip or enter my PIN grinds that urge to a halt. If it's as easy as tapping my watch against the screen in the chair in front of me, sure, why not?
    chia
  • Reply 11 of 18
    metrixmetrix Posts: 253member
    Now if we can can fresh fruit and cheese for under $10 on Southwest I will buy every time and i don't mean cheese whiz or better yet those old McDonald cheese danishes that when heated would melt steel. 
    edited September 6
  • Reply 12 of 18
    We have no such news in Europe. If you can pay with contactless card, you can with ApplePay as well automatically. You just needs bank to support it.
    chia
  • Reply 13 of 18
    macguimacgui Posts: 1,464member
    Eric_WVGG said:
    Anyway, I don't think it's a USA vs Canada thing.
    No, it's not a USA vs Canada thing. It's a USA vs most of the modern world. We are so far behind Canada and the EU for instance, regarding chip n PIN, and NFC for that matter.

    I still see a lot of swipe only readers around, and contrary to what others say, these don't support NFC at all. WalMart not supporting Apple Pay has nothing to do with being a 'discount store', nor do 'discount stores' shun Apple Pay because they're 'discount stores'. Costco is as much a 'discount store' as Walmart and they take Apple Pay, just not the Apple Card (VISA and AMEX only). Walmart doesn't want to give Apple a dime.

    I've yet to see a gas station that takes any NFC payment, though I know that some, somewhere, do. Just none that I've seen. So NFC, unlike swiping credit cards, is hardly ubiquitous, especially compared to other countries who've been ahead of us both in time and coverage of payment tech.

    There are some businesses near me that take Apple Pay and other NFC payments: Walgreens, McDonalds, Chick-Fil-A, El Pollo Loco. JCP didn't last time I was there, good to know they do now. Wendy's has some QR or QR-type system, Android only I'm guessing. There may be more AP merchants around the area, but nowhere near ubiquitous. 
    chia
  • Reply 14 of 18
    I checked it out last night and it wasn't immediately obvious how to use Apple Pay but it is definitely a payment option. Before tapping "Purchase" there is the option to choose a payment method. Tapping that brings up another screen that gives the various payment choices including Apple Pay.

    I'm happy to see AP as a payment method (though slightly disappointed it wasn't a month earlier when I was booking a flight, figures!). Hopefully this will prompt more airlines to do something similar.



    macgui said:
    Eric_WVGG said:
    Anyway, I don't think it's a USA vs Canada thing.
    I still see a lot of swipe only readers around, and contrary to what others say, these don't support NFC at all. WalMart not supporting Apple Pay has nothing to do with being a 'discount store', nor do 'discount stores' shun Apple Pay because they're 'discount stores'. Costco is as much a 'discount store' as Walmart and they take Apple Pay, just not the Apple Card (VISA and AMEX only).
    I'm not sure how this thread got moved over to NFC payments as this article is clearly about using Apple Pay within the Southwest app. But I'll add to the thread drift, ha ha!

    I live in a fairly small town but most of the places I shop at regularly now take Apple Pay. My local grocery store, next door is Ocean State Job Lot, across the street is CVS, across from them are McDonald's, Dunkin', a dry cleaner and a small convenience store and all of them accept Apple Pay. Down the street a farm stand takes it. The pizza shop half a mile away and the donut shop and Rite Aid in the center of town accept it. There are likely more places but I don't frequent them as much.

    The thing I find annoying is at least two places nearby have "upgraded" their POS terminals in the last year and no longer accept NFC payments when the old equipment did.

    Side story: my wife was in Dunkin' this morning and had started a conversation with a couple of 'older' gentlemen who were also in line. The older guys noticed she used her Apple Watch to pay and one of them asked if it was safe to use and if she lost her watch would someone else be able to use it to make purchases. While she was answering his questions she was interrupted by the kid behind the counter who said he could hack it within 2 seconds and use it to pay. Just goes to show how uneducated people are in general around NFC payments.

    macgui said:
    Eric_WVGG said:
    Anyway, I don't think it's a USA vs Canada thing.
    Walmart doesn't want to give Apple a dime.
    I'm pretty sure that isn't exactly accurate. Walmart doesn't want to be paying credit card fees at all, which I can certainly understand. I wonder what a company with Walmart's sales pays every year in those fees. But I seem to remember that Apple's portion comes out of the already established credit card fees. That is, the credit card company pays a little bit of what they make on the transaction to Apple, but the fee isn't increased on the retailer's end.
    edited September 6
  • Reply 15 of 18
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,311member
    All this talk about the U.S. being some technology backwater. Why?

    1. Americans despise change and will go extreme lengths to avoid it.

    2. The U.S. has 300+ million people spread out over many millions of square miles. That’s why bandwidth is so inconsistent in the U.S.

    3. Americans are not well informed about technology and fear it. They think a physical credit card is safer than NFC.

    4. There is no government mandate for NFC payments to be available to customers. Merchants can do as they please... and they do. It’s a hodgepodge of POS terminals and options.

    5. Again, because of the size of the country change rolls out sporadically and slowly. The government cannot just order the big tech companies or merchants to do its bidding. Infrastructure costs big bucks.

    6. Want to know why South Korea and Japan have almost universal broadband? Look at the square miles and the population numbers.
    edited September 6 Soli
  • Reply 16 of 18
    2% off with Apple Card linked to Apple Pay.
    edited September 6 lostkiwi
  • Reply 17 of 18
    BBirdy said:
    I’ve spent the summer in a small town in British Columbia, Canada. I was shocked how many businesses, large and small, and customers use phone tap payments.  Restaurants bring a phone tap device to your table that even does tip calculations. And when I use my IPhone/Apple Watch pay, no signing bills.  You can even tap your IPhone at gas pumps.  I reside in Houston, Texas—4th largest city in the USA—and do NOT have that almost total access to IPhone payment options, especially the gas station, restaurants, take-out. Even big department stores don’t do any phone pay in Houston. Canada is very tech savvy, much more than most places in the USA from what I’ve seen. I love it!
    Here in Dallas, it's not much different. What I have noticed is that lots of small and pop-up vendors are supporting Apple Pay (I think through Square). It's quick, secure and doesn't involve change. There are also an increasing number of vending machines that let you use Apple Pay.

    I'm not sure why larger organizations are dragging their feet.
    lostkiwi
  • Reply 18 of 18
    Apple_Bar said:
    BBirdy said:
    I’ve spent the summer in a small town in British Columbia, Canada. I was shocked how many businesses, large and small, and customers use phone tap payments.  Restaurants bring a phone tap device to your table that even does tip calculations. And when I use my IPhone/Apple Watch pay, no signing bills.  You can even tap your IPhone at gas pumps.  I reside in Houston, Texas—4th largest city in the USA—and do NOT have that almost total access to IPhone payment options, especially the gas station, restaurants, take-out. Even big department stores don’t do any phone pay in Houston. Canada is very tech savvy, much more than most places in the USA from what I’ve seen. I love it!
    Where you go shopping? Or get your gas from? I am from Houston and yes they do have NFC  at the pump specially new gas stations Try Exxon, Chevron, Buc-ee’s, 

    if you mean by “big department stores” Macy’s like stores yes, they take Apple Pay. JCP stopped back in April nationwide.

    but if you mean “discount stores” like Walmart, that’s not happening after failing miserably with CurrentC and now seems they still want to stick with Walmart Pay

    I get the feeling that they are tech savvy but the truth is that like Europe they have been doing contactless for years at least with cards. In the USA we are still getting these sort of hybrid cards now that have everything (mag strip, chip, contactless) delaying rolling out NFC payments.  Retail in general wont do it unless they are forced to,  remember including the chips on the cards in 2015? They just did it because of the “EMV liability shift” so they didn’t have any other choice than upgrade to EMV terminals.

    Nice for Southwest moving into that direction, we need Apple Pay everywhere. When I travel to Europe/Asia I just use Apple Pay or at some train stations that I have to use my Barclay or BoA card with pin because YES we still haven’t  move 100% to chip/pin. So funny some cashiers are like wth I haven’t seen a card requesting a signature in years and have to hunt for a pen.
    Agreed, he must not be noticing who takes Apple Pay in Houston, to Department stores, I'd add Kohls's, Target, Blooningdales, Nordstroms, etc., and he's off on Houston take out not accepting Apple Pay, as many do, e.g., McDonalds, Subway's, Chck-Fil-A, Chipotle, Starbucks, etc., etc.  

    Apple Pay is more widespread in US than you realize. At last report from Apple, it's over 70% of all merchants.  A few big companies, e.g., Kroger, Home Depot and Walmart, have resisted not because they don't have NFC capable machines, but because they are desperately trying to hold on to the data harvesting they currently get and will lose with people using Apple Pay.  The vast majority of others are simply waiting to change out their machines and upgrade their systems. The pressure is clear, though, and that's why Costco and Target, for example, huge "holdouts" added Apple Pay this year. 
    edited September 7 lostkiwi
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