From Big Macs to Payments: how McDonald’s accepts Apple Pay

Written By Branson Knowles

New payment platforms and methods of payment seem to be emerging every day. It feels like we just got the ability to use the chip on our debit cards, and now it’s been updated to the tap feature! Apple uses the tap feature well, especially in Apple Pay. 

Apple Pay has only recently hit the market so some users wonder; who accepts Apple Pay? Do popular fast-food restaurants, like McDonalds, accept Apple Pay? Yes, they do.

McDonalds accepts Apple Pay through their app, in-store kiosk, and cashiers.

You can use Apple Pay on your mobile device at McDonalds the same you would anywhere else. If you’re going inside and want to use the in-store kiosk, you can use Apple Pay over the card reader. 

You can also use Apple Pay with the cashier at McDonalds if you don’t want to use the in-store kiosk. 

If you’re using the McDonald’s mobile app, you can select Apple Pay as a form of payment during checkout. You can use popular payment platforms Paypal and Venmo too. 

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Can You Use Apple Pay at McDonalds Through the Drive-Thru?

One of my favorite parts about going to McDonalds is getting to stay in my car. The drive-thru is the best; you can order all of your favorite foods in your pajamas. While McDonalds accepts pjs in the drive-thru, do they accept Apple Pay?

They do! When you’re paying for your food through the drive-thru, let the cashier know you want to use Apple Pay and you should be able to. You can either use Apple Pay through your mobile device, or through the Apple credit card.

getting ready my card when entering mcdonalds drive thru

I used Apple Pay at McDonald’s a couple of days ago to try it out and it worked just as any other form of payment would. I went through the drive-thru to grab some good, cheap breakfast and used my good old Apple Card to pay for my meal.

It worked like a charm, the transaction was approved and popped up on my Apple Pay immediately. The food was great too, probably even better because I used Apple Pay! (Just kidding)

mcdonalds transaction apple pay statement

If you want to use the scan to pay feature in the drive-thru, you’ll have to let the cashier know so they can help you with the scanner.

How to Use Apple Pay in the McDonald’s App?

Like all fast-food restaurants these days, McDonald’s has a handy app that lets you browse the menu, collect points, and place orders all in one location. I’m not complaining too much, I’m definitely a sucker for free rewards.

The McDonald’s app is just as convenient for placing orders as it is browsing the menu. When you’ve selected all the items you want to order and the location you’re headed to, you can place your order in your bag and head to checkout.

Once you’re at the checkout screen, the McDonald’s App will ask you how you’d like to pay. You can choose between adding a debit/credit card, using other payment platforms Venmo and Paypal, or you can use Apple Pay.

me using apple pay with mcdonalds app

I have my Apple Pay set up to my Apple Card, so that’s where my McDonalds purchases will go once I make them through the app. Apple Pay is handy because you can add debit cards from other accounts as well, sending your order’s charge straight to your checking account.

apple pay paying on the app

The McDonald’s App has a ton of discounts and deals like I mentioned, so it’s worth checking out if not for the $.99 iced coffee! (I’m a fan)

Can You Use Apple Pay Inside a McDonald’s?

If you don’t want to download the McDonald’s app or head through the drive-thru, you can always keep it old school and head inside. The fast-food giant still has cashiers you can order from, or you can use one of their state of the art kiosks.

The kiosks are usually faster than waiting in line for a cashier in my experience, and you can use Apple Pay at either one. The menus are the same as well, so the choice really is yours.

If you want to place your order inside at the kiosk, the process is simple. First, you’ll go ahead and place your order. Once you’ve selected your food or drinks, you can head to check out to pay.

The kiosk will ask if you want to make your payment with a credit/debit card or with the tap-to-pay feature used by Apple Pay. The cardless reader symbol will light up and you can place your phone over the card reader to pay.

You should hear a little ‘beep’ noise when your payment has gone through, and the transaction should be complete.

If you want to use your physical Apple Card to use Apple Pay inside a McDonald’s kiosk, the process is about the same. Choose the foods you want, head to checkout, and use your physical Apple Card in the card reader with the chip, or tap to pay.

The last way to use Apple Pay inside a McDonald’s is with the cashier. I put this way last because it’s the most straightforward, head to the cashier and order your meal, then tell them you want to use Apple Pay.

They will activate the cardless reader, usually turning the cardless reader symbol blue. You should then be able to hover your phone over the device and make your payment through Apple Pay.

Does McDonald’s Take Tap to Pay?

Yes, McDonald’s accepts tap to pay payments. Most of their locations have drive-thrus and kiosks too, and they’re equipped to accept tap to pay as well.

 Does McDonald’s Accept Samsung Pay?

Yes, McDonald’s accepts Samsung Pay the same way as Apple Pay, through their cardless readers. You can also choose Samsung Pay as your method of payment when checking out on the McDonald’s app.

Samsung payment users can use Samsung Pay through McDonald’s drive-thrus too. 

the mcdonalds breakfast i bought with apple pay

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About the Author

Lead Researcher, Digital Banking in the U.S. at TopMobileBanks

Branson Knowles is a former banker and current writer at

During his years banking, he helped his clients discover their financial freedom through smart savings and spending goals. He started as a teller before becoming a banker and obtaining his federal licenses, furthering his clients' on their financial journeys.

After becoming one of the top producing bankers in the state, Branson decided it was time to pursue his own financial freedom. He started writing freelance finance articles before joining, breaking down banking like only an ex-banker could.

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