New ‘MasterCard Nearby’ app lets Apple Pay users easily locate merchants

Consumers around the United States are loading credit and debit cards from Bank of America, Capital One, Citi and Wells Fargo onto their iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus for use with Apple Pay. One of the first questions being asked is, “Where can I use it?’ MasterCard has the answer: MasterCard Nearby.

Available on the App Store, the MasterCard Nearby App enables on-the-go consumers to easily find the more than 220,000 merchants in the United States – including Subway, Toys R’ Us, Walgreens, Whole Foods Market and all Apple Store retail locations – that accept contactless payments.

Contactless technology allows consumers to make everyday purchases quickly and safely by holding their contactless-enabled card or device – like their iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus – near a contactless reader. With their iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus, users place their finger on Touch ID or enter a passcode and their transaction will be authenticated in seconds.

In addition to information on where you can use your contactless card or device, MasterCard Nearby also provides details on where MasterCard cardholders can reload prepaid cards, get cash back with their purchases, or use an ATM.

The MasterCard Nearby app is available for free from Apple’s App Store here.

Source: MasterCard


  1. When retailers become concerned that buyers in significant numbers will start selecting which stores to shop at based on which ones have the NFC card readers, adoption will take off like a rocket.

  2. This sounds a lot better than having google front each and every one of your credit card transactions so that it can then build a comprehensive blackmail dossier for future use against anyone complaining about its wallet service.

    On the plus side however, anyone running S-Knox on their samshmuck needn’t worry because their credit and online reputation is already toast.

  3. I downloaded the app in anticipation of using it. It does appear to identify the known locations that accept  Pay in my area. However, it’s not really identifying specific locations for  Pay, but rather locations with generic contactless hardware, which is not the same thing. It will be nice when someone comes out with an app specifically for  Pay locations.

    1. Is this true? I was under the impression that, if the POS had NFC, then it DOES support A-Pay (and other contactless systems) without the merchant needing to do any more to officially opt-in.

      We just saw this with Rite-Aid already having support for for A-Pay, but then turning it off because competitor MCX doesn’t need NFC to work (and doesn’t want Apple’s solution to get traction).

  4. At one level I understand the rationalization for this, but on another level it’s absolutely stupid:

    “Hey, I’m a chronic consumer (probably with lots of credit card debt already) with an iPhone 6, and I *desperately* want to spend some money using Apple Pay. I have to be trendy and cool, so I can only use Apple Pay, but I desperately need to get rid of my money. I don’t really care what I buy, so can someone *please* help me find someone who will take my money via Apple Pay????”

    1. scaldwell, It’s not stupid. Your use case is obviously different from mine. I have a very good reason to prefer Apple Pay over a physical credit card. Security and thus convenience.

      I’ve had my credit card replaced twice in the last year due to stores that were incapable of keeping their Point of Sales terminal software up to date or keep their equipment free of skimming equipment. Some skimming equipment is invisible to the user because it’s placed inside the machine. So there is very little a consumer can do to safeguard themselves from these forms of fraud. When your card is breached, it becomes inconvenient.

      It is a pain because I also have auto pay subscriptions for iTunes, iCloud, Netflix, Adobe and others on that card which have to be revised every time the card is breached and replaced. Plus the last time it was breached, it triggered heightened fraud alerts on the card which made the card difficult to use because too often it would be flagged and the transaction rejected.

      Then along comes Apple Pay. I don’t use my card. I use my phone that exchanges a one use token with the merchant. My card can’t be stolen this way.

      I have a choice of drug stores. Rite Aid, CVS and Walgreens. Rite Aid just kicked themselves in the ass with me. I will now shop at CVS until they dump NFC for MCX, if they are dumb enough to do that.

      I have a choice of grocery stores. Albertsons had a credit card breach. Ralphs hasn’t said they have. Neither supports Apple Pay. So I will shop at Stater Brothers, which does support NFC and thus Apple Pay.

      When it comes to lunch, I can go to a variety of fast food places. I will probably opt for one that allows Apple Pay rather than risk my credit card again.

      There is an added benefit, the card will automatically renew when the current card expires.

      So security and convenience are valid reasons to want to use Apple Pay.

      1. Amen brother. Apple Pay is about the security, not its simplicity. And like I you point out, one does not need to carelessly lose a card to have to go through the time consuming hassle of of replacing it. Those skimmers are diabolical. I bought fuel in Los Angeles, and an hour later my card number was being used to buy an outboard motor in Sacramento . Apple Pay is the only iPhone 6 featured that’s got me considering replacing my 5S early.

      2. “I’ve had my credit card replaced twice in the last year due to stores that were incapable of keeping their Point of Sales terminal software up to date or keep their equipment free of skimming equipment.”

        Exactly my experience with an E*Trade Visa/Debit card. Both times they contacted me to cancel my old card and send a new card I was traveling in remote areas far from home. Having them Fed Ex a new card took 48 hours both times, and both times most of my traveling cash was in that account. Thank you Home Depot and Target. There’s nothing that will ruin a vacation faster than being in the outback in Canada with no ATM card. Luckily I had other credit cards on me, but it was still a pain. They can shove MCX and Current C where the moon don’t shine.

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