Check your American Express Card to make sure it displays the contactless symbol.
For newly issued Cards, the first time you spend you'll need to make a Chip and PIN purchase. Once you've made that first purchase on your Card, it'll be automatically activated for contactless payments.
Simply touch your contactless American Express Card on a contactless-enabled card reader to pay for items up to a value of £20 per transaction.
That's it. You've successfully made a contactless payment, safe in the knowledge that you're covered by the same fraud protection that guarantees Chip and PIN transactions.
If you need a little more guidance, take a look at our FAQs for some helpful advice.
Use your contactless American Express Card to pay for travel across the London transport network, including on the bus, tube, tram, DLR, London Overground and most National Rail services in London*.
You will be charged an adult-rate pay as you go fare each time, plus you also benefit from daily and Monday to Sunday capping. Find out more about fares here.
To use your contactless Card for travel in London follow these three simple steps:
Take your Card out of your wallet to ensure you only touch one Card on the reader. This will make sure you are not charged on a card you did not intend to use.
Touch in and out using your American Express Card on the reader when required.
If you sign up for a TfL online account and register your American Express Card you can view up to 12 months of your contactless journey and payment history.
*Exclusions apply on riverboats, Barclays Cycle Hire, Emirates Air Line, and buses on routes 402 and 477 as well as Heritage Routemasters which operate some journeys on parts of route 15.
You can use your contactless Card to pay for everyday items and more in thousands of shops, restaurants and bars around the UK — and the list is growing every day. Plus, every time you use your Card you'll earn your usual rewards such as cashback or Membership Rewards® points on virtually every £1 you spend†. So whether you are grabbing a coffee on your way to the office, or shopping for beauty treats in Boots, you can benefit from the same great loyalty programme you already enjoy.
†Membership Rewards points are not earned on interest, fees, balance transfers, cash advances (including transactions treated as cash), loading of pre paid Cards, American Express Travellers Cheque purchases or foreign exchange transactions; and any amounts that are subsequently re-credited to your Card Account by way of refunds. Full Membership Rewards Terms and Conditions apply and can be found here.
1. How does contactless actually work?
Contactless works by using short range wireless technology, so the Point of Sale terminal will pick up a signal from your Card when it's very close to it. You can use your Card for payments of £20 or less and, as an extra security measure, you may be occasionally asked to enter your PIN.
2. I already have a Card. Can I apply for a contactless Card?
We are gradually migrating specific Card products to contactless. If your product is due to change, your next renewal Card or replacement Card will have this feature. Not all of our products will be available with contactless technology.
3. How do I know if my Card is contactless?
Currently there are several American Express products which have contactless technology, with more planned in the near future. To see if your Card is contactless, look for the contactless symbol on the back of your Card.
4. Is my American Express contactless Card secure?
Yes, it is very secure. American Express issued contactless Cards use the same secure encryption technology as any other American Express Chip and PIN Card.
For payment to be taken, a merchant must enter the amount for you to approve and you will need to touch your contactless Card on the Point of Sale terminal.
The only exception to this is when using your Card with the Transport for London travel network. Rather than TfL entering the amount for you to approve, payment for travel will be calculated based on the mode of transport used as well as the number of journeys completed.
5. I carry more than one contactless Card, and/or an Oyster Card in my wallet or purse; which one will be used if I touch my wallet or purse against the Point of Sale terminal?
We do not recommend touching your wallet or purse against the Point of Sale terminal if you have more than one Card in it that is contactless.
You should only present the Card you wish to pay with to the Point of Sale terminal.
It is therefore suggested that if your wallet or purse contains more than one contactless Card, you remove the contactless Card you wish to use and touch it against the Point of Sale terminal. This is particularly important if using your Card with Transport for London.
A light and/or signal beep will show your Card has been accepted.
6. I have received a contactless Card; can I choose to have a Chip and PIN Card instead?
Your contactless Card is also a Chip and PIN Card. It can be used for Chip and PIN only transactions if you wish. You decide how you use your Card to pay for goods and services so simply advise the merchant you wish to pay by Chip and PIN.
7. I tried to use my contactless Card for the first time but was asked to enter my PIN; why did this happen?
When you first use your new contactless Card you will be asked to enter your PIN to initialise the contactless facility. Periodically, you will be asked to enter your PIN as a security measure.
8. My Card seems to have stopped working for contactless transactions?
Not all merchants accept contactless transactions. Check that the Point of Sale terminal is enabled for American Express contactless payments. If the Point of Sale terminal is enabled for American Express contactless payments, call the number on the back of your Card and we will arrange a replacement Card for you. You can use your Card with your PIN in the meantime.
9. When travelling on the Transport for London network, can I use my contactless Card in place of an Oyster card?
Yes, you can use your American Express contactless Card for travel on buses, the underground, tram, overground, DLR and most National Rail routes within the London area. Exclusions apply on riverboats, Barclays Cycle Hire, Emirates Air Line, and buses on routes 402 and 477 as well as Heritage Routemasters which operate some journeys on parts of route 15.
10. Can I use my contactless Card abroad?
You can use your contactless Card abroad in most places that you see the contactless acceptance logo. The transaction limit for American Express Cards issued in the UK is £20; this may vary depending where your Card was issued.
We are aware that there is a small number of contactless terminals in the United States which use a security mechanism not supported by us. If you attempt a contactless transaction at one of these terminals it will be declined, however you will still be able to perform a standard Chip transaction at these retailers.
11. Can I still collect rewards on my Card?
Yes, if you have enrolled and your product is eligible then contactless transactions are eligible for rewards just like your normal Chip and PIN transactions.
12. I used my Card for a contactless transaction today but can't see the charge when I view my account on-line.
All transactions, including contactless transactions, may take up to 48 hours to be submitted and processed.
13. Will I receive a receipt for my transactions?
Contactless transactions are designed to let you make low value transactions quickly and conveniently. If you would like a receipt to confirm the contactless transaction just ask the merchant when you pay.
Please note that this may not be directly available in certain circumstances for example, when using Transport for London.
14. If my Card is lost or stolen, can a person that finds my Card use it repeatedly?
As well as a maximum limit of £20 for each contactless transaction, from time to time you will be asked to insert your Card for a Chip and PIN transaction to verify that you are still in possession of the Card — this security measure restricts the possibility of extended unauthorised use.
15. If my Card is lost or stolen, what would my liability be?
American Express provides protection for all our customers through our Fraud Protection Guarantee*.
*We will guarantee protection against fraudulent transactions on your Card, provided you have taken the responsibility to notify us immediately, and you have complied with your Card Terms and Conditions.
The above stores are just a snapshot
of the thousands of places accepting
American Express contactless today.
Participating branches only - see in store for details.