Contactless payment | Contactless card | NatWest

Contactless payments with your debit card

Make a contactless payment quickly and securely for items up to £30

How long will contactless payments take to clear?

Contactless payments can take up to 4 days to debit from your account and affect your available balance, some may take even longer.


Here are some tips that may help you avoid going into an Unarranged Overdraft.


  1. Set up balance alerts
  2. Use our Mobile Banking App to keep track of your spending
  3. Keep a note of how much you have spent using your contactless card 

We charge £8 per day for Unarranged Overdraft Usage of more than £10 (subject to a maximum of £80 in any charging period).


What is a contactless payment?

Using your contactless card is a fast, easy and secure way to pay for purchases of £30 or less like a coffee, lunch, travel or a newspaper - in less than a second! They are becoming more popular and are available at most retailers with more retailers accepting Contactless on a daily basis.

Here are a few of the benefits:

It's fast

Touch your contactless card against the card reader to pay for purchases under £30 in seconds

It's easy

With Contactless there is no need to use cash, simply tap your card on the card reader

It's safe and secure

Contactless payments are safe and secure and have the same protection as CHIP & PIN payments

Why can’t I see all of my Contactless payments immediately?

Some Contactless payments made with your card will not show in your available balance immediately and will only leave your account up to 4 working days later with some taking longer.




If you have £100 in your account on a Monday, and you make a £11 Contactless payment that day, the 'Balance' column might still show as £100 as will the 'Available' column. You can see this by logging into Online Banking. The 'Balance' and ‘Available’ column might not change to £89 until the Thursday. This means that you need to make sure you have enough money in your account to cover these payments, when they are taken.

If you spend another £100 on Tuesday and you didn't have an overdraft, when the £11 Contactless payment you made on Monday updates your ‘Balance’ and ‘Available’ balance, you would go overdrawn. This would be because you have spent £111 and you would have to pay unarranged overdraft charges.


Things to remember:


  • Make sure you have sufficient funds in your account

  • Payments take up to 4 days to leave your account with some taking longer

  • Use Contactless for purchases up to £30

  • You don't have to use the Contactless function if you don't want to, you can still use it as a normal debit card

Contactless using Apple Pay

If you happen to have a compatible Apple device then why not try out Apple Pay. It's the new, easy and secure way to pay using your NatWest debit or credit card.


Use Apple Pay in store (iPhone 6 or Apple Watch) and within apps (iPhone 6, iPad Air 2 or iPad Mini 3). Apple Pay is available on selected personal current accounts and NatWest MasterCard credit cards.


An added benefit to Apple pay is that payments affect your available balance immediately, so no need to worry about going over drawn.


More about Apple pay

How do I get a Contactless debit card?

Most of our Visa debit cards we issue to customers have Contactless technology. You can tell if your card has Contactless technology if it has the wave symbol on it. 


We offer our Contactless debit cards to all eligible customers.


Am I eligible for Contactless?

Making a Contactless payment

To make your first Contactless payment you’ll need to activate your Contactless card by completing a Chip and PIN transaction first.
This is to make sure you are the owner of the card and is also an added security measure to reduce the risk of fraud.


Look for the Contactless symbol when paying for items £30 or less

Touch your Contactless debit card against the reader

A beep or a green light shows as your payment is being processed

Once your Contactless payment is complete you'll be offered a receipt 

Add your signposting title here… Using your contactless card for London Transport

All of our Contactless cards are enabled for use on the London transport network. This means you can use your Contactless debit card and Contactless credit card exactly the same way as if you were using a pay as you go Oyster Card.

You can use your Contactless debit and credit card on buses, Tubes, trams, DLR, London Over ground, TFL (Transport for London) Rail, Emirates Air Lines and most National Rail services in London. This makes it simple and easy to use especially if you have forgotten your Oyster card!

However please remember to watch out for card clash when tapping the yellow card reader!

Our top 3 London travel tips!

1. Watch out for card clash

When you touch your Contactless card on the yellow card reader, and it’s in the same wallet as any other Contactless cards, then the card reader won’t know which one to read.


The best way to avoid card clash is to keep your separate or by pulling the card you wish to use out of your wallet and tapping the yellow card reader.

2. Tap in and tap out

When travelling on London transport it’s important to remember to use the same card to tap in and out with, at the beginning and end of the journey.


Exactly the same as if you were using a pay as you go Oyster Card.

3. Benefit from daily fare capping

When you use Contactless card you’ll be able to benefit from daily Monday to Sunday capping.


This means that if you make multiple trips throughout the day or week you’ll never pay more than the cost of a daily or weekly travel card.

Set Tab for lightbox