Staff Training is Another Challenge for NFC: It’s a Disaster at McDonald’s

by Tim Sloane 0

This BusinessInsider article uses posts from actual users to document the problem:

“iPhone6 users are hitting upon a problem when trying to pay for burgers inMcDonald’s: Staff don’t know how to accept payment using Apple Pay, the newmobile payments app.

Usersof this Mac Rumors forum have been complaining that asking McDonald’s staffwhether they take Apple Pay causes delays in their order because workers simplydon’t know what it is.

Here’sa post from DKDonkeyKong that explains the problem:

Ijust got my new Gold iPhone 6 Plus (128GB) yesterday. I went to McDonalds,excited to purchase lunch using my new device. The lady at the front gave me mytotal, and I said “I’m going to pay using my new iPhone”. Sheimmediately gave a very confused look and told me I could pay using cash orcredit. I said that Apple Pay is an NFC-based feature and should work with anyNFC terminal. She told me to wait just a moment while she spoke with hermanager. At that point I was rather embarrassed and told her I’d just pay withmy card.”

Other users suggest the best approach is to say nothing;just use Apple Pay instead of a card:

“Otherpeople have been having the same problem. One forum poster said “I havestopped even trying to tell anybody I want to use Apple Pay. They just getconfused and it holds things up.”

iPhone6 users have hit upon a way to get around this, though. They recommend askingto pay with a credit card, and then secretly using Apple Pay without tellingthe cashier.

Here’ssome advice from a forum user on how to use Apple Pay in McDonald’s:

DoNOT involve the cashier. While they ring up, I generally have my phone near theterminal [with] home button pushed. This works over 50% of time. For thoseother times, when they ask cash or credit, simply say credit. People spend toomuch time talking to the cashiers. They’re easily confused.

Anotherforum user says “Don’t confuse a McDonald’s worker with the facts!! Justhold the phone up to the reader. Worked fine for me.”

Otheradvice given to people wanting to use Apple Pay at McDonald’s includes”Keep your mouth closed” and “Don’t bother even tellingthem.”

NFC payments are hard enough to perform, given how fewmerchants accept NFC. Add to that thelack of awareness at the POS, and it suggests significant headwinds exist forNFC adoption that transcends availability in the mobile handset.


Overview by Tim Sloane, VP, Payments Insider for Mercator Advisory Group

Read full story at the Business Insider