How to Find NFC Compatible Merchants

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By Tanya Wozniaki

Once you’ve set up your smartphone to make payments using near field communication technology there is still one last step in the process. You need to find merchants that have compatible card readers. Three symbols are commonly used to indicate contactless payment systems. These include the NFC payment symbol, Google Wallet’s logo, and the MasterCard PayPass icon. If you’re unsure, you can always ask the seller if they have a NFC compatible card reader.

To scout out stores and gas stations ahead of time, visit a website such as Google Wallet or MasterCard PayPass. Both offer services for seeking businesses in your area that support contactless payments. First type your address or zip code into the box and press search. On the map that appears, click a location to see what the business is and where it’s located. Different types of NFC payments the merchant can accept are shown by different colored markers.

Once you’ve selected a location, you can either ask for directions or have the address sent in a text message to your smartphone. In keeping with the ease of use of near field communication technology, sites like Google Wallet aim to make finding compatible card readers as simple as possible. Once the address is in your phone you can enter it into your GPS for turn-by-turn directions to the nearest store. This is especially useful on vacation when you’re unfamiliar with the area.

As you go through your day, be on the lookout for the NFC logo that indicates an item uses NFC technology. You’ll be surprised where they turn up when you’re looking for them. From movie posters to real estate signs, NFC technology is popping up in all industries. Even the health care industry has caught on and many doctors and nurses track patient information and treatment procedures using near field communication.