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Garmin Pay: What Is It, How To Set It Up, Supported Banks, And More

You’ve probably heard of Apple Pay. It’s a no-contact system that lets you pay for things with your phone rather than having to take out your wallet. But have you heard of Garmin Pay? If not, we’ll cover that in this article!

And even if you have, we’ll tell you everything that you need to know about Garmin Pay. If you just bought a watch that features Garmin Pay, you will know how to best use it to your advantage.

What is Garmin Pay?

Garmin Pay is much like Apple Pay in that it is a contactless payment solution. The difference is that you use your cell phone or Apple Watch for Apple Pay. With Garmin Pay, you use a Garmin device.

All you have to do to hold your watch near the card reader, and voila! You’ve paid for anything that you need: paint from Lowe’s, coffee from Starbucks, or groceries at Walmart. You don’t need your phone, wallet, or purse. Just your Garmin watch.  

Is Garmin Pay Secure?

Yes. Garmin has designed Garmin Pay with privacy and security in mind. Your card number is not stored on your device or Garmin’s servers. Nor is it given to merchants when you use the device. 

Instead, you have watch-specific card numbers and transaction codes every time you buy something. This means that you can have the convenience of paying quickly without compromising your security. 

How Do I Set Up Garmin Pay?

Grab both the watch you want to set up Garmin Pay on and your smartphone. Log into the Garmin Connect app and select the Garmin Devices section, which you can find under the “More” tab above the Settings menu.

Select your Garmin Pay-compatible device from the list. Most of the newer, higher-end models will be there, such as the Forerunner 245 or fenix 6. If you don’t know if your device is compatible, check the list down at the bottom of this article.

When you’re ready to add a credit or debit card to your device, you need to tap Create Your Wallet. You’ll be prompted to create a four-digit passcode for your virtual wallet. You can add your cards manually by inputting the data yourself, or by scanning them.

Make sure, though, that you use the verification code that you received via text so that the card can be added to your virtual wallet. You can add as many cards as you want this way, and you can even delete a card or temporarily suspend one for a time if needed.

Which Cards and Banks are Compatible with Garmin Pay?

Visa and Mastercard are the two major credit and debit cards that support Garmin Pay, but you’ll need to check with your specific bank to see if it’s compatible with Garmin Pay by visiting the participating banks page on Garmin Pay.

If you live in the United States, many banks support Garmin Pay, but there are fewer banks that support Garmin Pay in other places where it is available—Australia and the United Kingdom, for example. 

Some examples of major banks that support Garmin Pay include Chase, Discover, Capital One, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, and U.S. Bank. 

Where Can I Use Garmin Pay?

Garmin Pay can be used anywhere that accepts contactless payments, including stores like Starbucks, Disney, Walgreens, Whole Foods, Staples, Nike, and Subway. 

If you’re not sure if a store accepts contactless payments, you just need to look for the contactless payment symbol, which looks like a sideways WiFi signal. You can also always ask a store representative.

As stores become increasingly more technologically savvy, there’s a good chance that most stores where you would want to use Garmin Pay will accept contactless payments. 

Just remember that sometimes banks can limit contactless payment transactions to a certain amount – like a $50 – for security purposes.

How Do I Buy Something with Garmin Pay?

To access Garmin Pay from your watch, you’ll need to first enter your passcode, select the correct credit card from your virtual watch, and then turn your wrist with your watch on it near the card reader to pay. It’s that simple.

If you’ve used other contactless payments before like Apple Pay, it’s very similar. Garmin Pay is just particularly useful for runners. While some runners do use Apple Watches, Garmin is definitely the watch of choice

If you’re out for a run and find yourself needing water, all you need is your Garmin watch, and you can easily stop by a gas station or grocery store and pick up some with nothing but your watch.

As a note of caution, make sure that you know your passcode, because if you enter it incorrectly three times, it will lock you out of the virtual wallet on your Garmin watch, and you’ll have to enter the Garmin Connect app to re-enter your passcode and set a new one.

If you forget it in that case, Garmin will delete your current virtual wallet for your protection, and you’ll have to set it up again. While this is definitely a hassle, you can be sure that Garmin is trying to keep your information safe.

What Watches are Garmin Pay Compatible?

Right now, there are 36 watches that are Garmin Pay compatible, which means that you have a wide variety of options.

These range in price from $250 to $2,500. We’ve listed all the watches that are currently Garmin Pay compatible in order of price so that you can easily figure out which one is best for you if price is a concern.

  • vivoactive 3
  • vivoactive 4
  • Venu
  • vivoactive 4S
  • Forerunner 645
  • Approach S62
  • vivomove Luxe 
  • Forerunner 945
  • fenix 5 Plus
  • fenix 5S Plus
  • fenix 6S
  • fenix 6
  • fenix 6 – Pro and Sapphire Editions
  • fenix 6S – Pro and Sapphire Editions  
  • fenix 5X Plus 
  • fenix 6X – Pro and Sapphire Editions 
  • fenix 6X – Pro Solar Edition
  • D2
  • MARQ Athlete
  • MARQ Adventurer
  • MARQ Captain
  • MARQ Aviator
  • MARQ Commander
  • MARQ Driver

Related: The Top Garmin Running Watches

Concluding Thoughts

If you love your Garmin watch, there’s a good chance that you’ll love Garmin Pay. If you’re due for a new watch or if you’re thinking of buying one, you should definitely consider one that is Garmin Pay compatible. 

Garmin Pay will give you the flexibility of buying something if needed. However, in addition to convenience, Garmin Pay is also a good safety mechanism that allows you to have a means of payment without having to carry around a credit or debit card when you run.  

The Wired Runner