Walmart Shoppers Threaten "Collective Boycott" Over Payment Options
Consumers are calling out the retailer for not accepting a certain commonly-used method.
At times, checking out at Walmart has been one of the most universally frustrating experiences. When we relied more on actual cashiers, the popular retail chain was known for having only a few registers open at once, leading to long lines and wait times. These days, Walmart self-checkout machines have added other annoyances, from problematic promotions to uncomfortable confrontations. But now, consumers are coming together to threaten a "collective boycott" against the chain for another common irritation. Read on to discover more about why Walmart shoppers are outraged over the retailer's payment options.
Consumers have been switching up their payment preferences.
Lately, debit and credit cards have started losing popularity thanks to contactless payment options. A 2023 survey from Mastercard Contactless Consumer Polling recently found that 51 percent of people in the U.S. are now using some form of contactless payment, CNBC reported.
The preference towards tap-to-go credit cards and mobile wallets like Apply Pay increased alongside the COVID pandemic, as shoppers became more concerned about cleanliness and contact.
"What we're really seeing during this crisis period is a consumer behavioral shift to leveraging contactless products," Linda Kirkpatrick, president of U.S. issuers at Mastercard, told CNBC. "If you're at a grocery store or a drug store where a consumer should avoid touching a terminal or coming into contact with the cashier, what contactless products really provide is an avenue to shop safely."
Walmart is now being slammed for its payment options.
As consumers shift to contactless payments, some have noticed the absence of a popular option at Walmart: Apple Pay.
Others have even noted how the lack of this payment option has caused them problems when trying to purchase products from the retailer's stores. "My mom asked me to go to Walmart but Walmart doesn't accept Apple Pay and my wallet is still missing," one person explained in an Oct. 8 post on X.
Another user shared a photo of their cart full of items and wrote, "Life update: Walmart still don't have Apple Pay. I got what I needed and then realized I didn't have my wallet. I'm putting everything back now."
Some shoppers are even calling for a "collective boycott" against Walmart for not accepting Apple Pay.
For some, Walmart's lack of Apple Pay as a payment option has gone past a minor inconvenience—especially as they've realized that many other retailers do accept it.
Some are even suggesting that shoppers start taking their business to these other retailers to make a point.
Best Life has reached out to Walmart about these complaints from customers, and we will update this story with their response.
The retailer encourages its customers to use Walmart Pay instead.
Walmart may be one of the last hold-outs when it comes to this payment option. A 2022 report from the National Retail Federation (NRF) found that 80 percent of merchants surveyed take Apple Pay or at least planned to do so within the next 18 months. Some major retailers that currently accept this form of payment include Costco, CVS, Safeway, Target, Trader Joe's, Walgreens, and Wegmans, according to MacReports.
But Walmart does offer its own contactless payment at stores nationwide. The retailer encourages its customers to use Walmart Pay, which can only be accessed if you download the Walmart app. This tool allows you to save credit, debit, or gift cards to your Walmart account and use them to pay with your phone at checkout.
"When you're done shopping, go to any checkout lane and scan your items, then either open Walmart Pay in the app, or open your phone's camera. Hold your phone over the QR code on the register to pay," Walmart explains on its website.