How to setup and use Garmin Pay on your watch

Garmin Pay: How to setup it up, how to use it to pay for things

Garmin Pay is an alternative to Apple Pay on the Apple Watch, Google Pay and Fitbit Pay. In this article, you will be taken through the steps on how to setup up Garmin Pay on your watch and how to use Garmin Pay to pay for things in shops on your wrist.

Mobile payments and contactless payments are getting increasingly popular and allowing people to leave there wallet at home and use either a phone or in the case of Garmin Pay, a watch and pay right from your wrist.

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In this Garmin Pay lowdown, I have broken down how Garmin Pay works, the wearables that support it and the quickest way to get set up so you can start paying from your wrist with your Garmin watch.

How Garmin Pay worksHow to setup Garmin Pay


Garmin Pay essentially works a lot like Apple Pay, Google Pay and Fitbit Pay, where you load your debit or credit card onto the mobile payment platform and then you are able to make payments in shops that support contactless payments..

Is Garmin Pay secure?

Card numbers are not stored on the device, kept on Garmin’s servers even passed onto the retailer when you are making the transaction. So you don’t have to worry about your card details being cloned or if you happen to lose your Garmin Watch, then you have not lost your card details like you would if you lose your wallet

So if you lose your watch or lost the card that is loaded into Garmin Pay, then you simply remove the card in the Garmin Connect Mobile app which is available for iOS and Andriod.

Compatible Garmin watches Garmin Pay watches


So here is the catch, Garmin Pay is limited to the wearables it supports. Currently, the only Garmin wearables that support Garmin Pay are the Garmin Vivoactive 3 and the new Garmin Forerunner 645 Music as well as the Forerunner 645 without music.

For those of you wondering the Fenix 5 series does not support Garmin Pay, nor does the flagship FOrerunner 935 running watch. Whilst like you I am disappointed that these wearables don’t support the payment platform, rumours suggest the Fenix 6 will support it

Garmin Pay compatible banks

This is one of the areas that Garmin seems to be slow on and that is getting banks onboard to supporting Garmin Pay. I went to an event in the UK in August 2017 to get hands-on with the Vivoactive 3 when it was launched and was told by a Garmin rep that most of the major UK banks were ready to go and still the UK only has 3 banks that support it.

But in the US for instance, there are more than 40 banks and financial institutions supported including Bank of America, People’s Bank and Wells Fargo. So whilst adoption seems to be happening over the pond, the UK and Europe is still behind.

Garmin does list Garmin Pay compatible banks on its website, which can be filtered by region and by Mastercard and Visa cards. so be sure to check out the list of supported banks in your country before you setup Garmin Pay.

Setting up Garmin Pay

Now you know how it all works, which wearables support it and confirmed your bank is compatible with Garmin Pay, let us walk through how to setup Garmin Pay on your watch.

Download Garmin Connect onto your mobile

If you have not already downloaded Garmin Connect Mobile for iOS and Andriod, then you need to do so. Once you have downloaded it and paired with your Garmin watch, then you are ready for the next stage

Create your WalletGarmin Pay setup in Connect Mobile


The next stage for setting up Garmin Pay is to head to the Garmin Pay settings on Garmin Connect Mobile. This can be found under Garmin devices and then choose the Garmin wearable and then Garmin Pay. You are then prompted to create your waller, create a passcode and then you are ready to add a card.

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Accept the terms and conditions

This is the important bit around how Garmin will share the information it holds on you and it will process your information. Make sure you have a good read to ensure you are happy with all of this.

Add a card to use in Garmin Pay

You will need to enter your card number, expiration date and security code details. The next step is to enter your name and the address registered to the card, it is important that you use the address registered to the card or you may run into problems verify the card in Garmin Pay.

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The next stage is to get your card verified by your bank for use in Garmin Pay. This will either be through ringing up customer service or getting a text to verify that you are the cardholder.

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Garmin Pay is setup and ready to use

That’s it and if everything went as planned, Garmin pay is set up and ready to use on your Garmin watch. The next step is how to use Garmin Pay to pay for things.

How to use Garmin Pay to pay for thingsPaying with Garmin pay


So now you are all set up, you will be racing to use Garmin Pay for the first time and if you if you have used Apple Pay or contactless payments, then things are not going to be much different.

So before you get started, you will need to go into the menu settings of your Garmin watch to find your wallet. From there, you’ll be prompted to type in the passcode you created in the setup stage and this will unlock the encryption and give you access to the cards you have loaded into Garmin Pay. You are now good to use Garmin Pay for 24 hours before you have to re-enter your passcode.Contactless payment logo

When you are ready to pay in the shop you will need to open Garmin wallet and choose the card you want to pay will. The onscreen instructions will then prompt you to hold the watch up to the reader at the checkout. If the transaction has approved the watch will give a little vibrating buzz and a tick signalling that the transaction has been completed.

Top tips for Garmin Pay

  • Once you’ve typed in that passcode while you are wearing the watch, you won’t have to type it in again for 24 hours.
  • If you take the watch off or disable heart rate monitoring, then you will have to re-enter your passcode. This is for security if you watch is lost or stolen to prevent fraud
  • You can reset your passcode, manage/delete cards or suspend the Garmin wallet in the Garmin Connect Mobile app.
  • In some countries and especially the UK, you may find that payments with Garmin Pay have an upper limit and in the UK it is £30. Most offer contactless and mobile payments have this too.
  • Whilst I tend to use Mobile payments instead of my actual plastic card, I would advise carrying a physical card with you as sometimes the banks will randomly want you to verify the purchase with the physical card or if the retailer does not accept contactless.

So that’s it, that’s how to setup Garmin Pay on your watch and then how to Pay with Garmin Pay. If you have any questions or comments, then please leave them below.

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Jon Ratcliffe
I have a huge passion for technology having worked in the sector for over 18 years in a variety of roles. I cover Wearables, tech and smart home. My reviews and information will talk about how the product works in reality and not just what the marketing departments want you to think.

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