Apple Pay with “EC card” at the Sparkasse: Start is imminent

Image source: GIGA (iPhone), Sparkasse (Girocard)


If you want to use Apple Pay, you inevitably need a compatible credit or debit card from your bank – provided the finance house supports the iPhone payment service. The popular Girocard of the Sparkasse (often wrongly called “EC-Karte”) is unfortunately still not suitable – this is now changing, because the popular card form will soon be supported.

apple pay

Update from August 11, 2020: After the official announcement of the Sparkasse’s EC card support for Apple Pay in July for the summer, there are now new references to a specific date. For example, iPhone-Ticker.de reports, citing the Donaukurier, from a previous press conference of the Sparkasse Regensburg.

Accordingly, the start of Girocard support is likely to be imminent; we are talking about around two weeks. Based on the date of the press conference last week, Wednesday, the introduction could then take place either on Tuesday, August 18 or 25. In any case, probably this month.

The slightly different spot for Apple Pay from the savings banks – it already works with the credit card:

It is important for customers to know that the Sparkasse will provide information about the requirements in advance. In concrete terms, it then needs:

  • An Apple Pay-enabled device (i.e. a suitable iPhone or Apple Watch).
  • An Apple ID.
  • The Sparkasse app (latest version).
  • An activation for online banking (using the electronic mailbox and pushTAN or chipTAN process).

Original article from June 28, 2019:

Happy news for customers of the Sparkassen and Volksbanken: The banks have reached an agreement with Apple and will definitely be able to offer Apple Pay to their customers in 2019 – we reported. In the course of this, however, we had to find out that the Girocard (formerly Electronic Cash, EC card for short), which is widely used in Germany, is not yet supported. However, there is a clear commitment to the local “special case”, said Jennifer Bailey, responsible Apple manager: “We are in favor of integrating the Girocard, but work still has to be done, including the Girocard consortium.” Sparkasse has another word and promises a rough start date for Girocard support.

For 2020: Apple Pay with “EC card” or Girocard

As a result, customers will have to wait until at least 2020. Meanwhile, customers of the Sparkasse, if they want to use Apple Pay soon, should store the credit cards (Mastercard or Visacard) of the financial house in Apple’s wallet app.

From 2020, German girocards for Apple Pay can also be stored in the iPhone’s wallet app:

Support for the German debit payment system Girocard was one of the central points of contention between the savings banks and Apple. With the support that has now been announced, the bone of contention is finally cleared out of the way and an important concession to the local features has been granted. Customers just have to be patient. Apple Pay started in the USA in 2014. In this country, the introduction took place in December 2018, including Deutsche Bank, comdirect, American Express and other financial service providers. The savings banks and Volksbanken, however, still needed an “extra invitation” and were initially shy.

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