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(13 Fixes) Google Pay Not Working [Updated 2023 Guide]

Google Pay Not Working

Imagine you’re in a store. 

And you’re trying to use Google Pay at the checkout counter…

Only for the transaction to fail.

Kinda embarrassing, right?

Well, you can easily avoid this nightmare scenario…

By following my guide on how to fix Google Pay.

Continue reading to find out:

  • Why Google Pay isn’t working on your device.
  • Whether you need an internet connection for Google Pay to work.
  • 13 easy and effective fixes to get your Google Pay up and running.
  • And a lot more…

Why is Google Pay not working?

Google Pay isn’t working due to issues with your debit or credit card. It might have expired. Or it may have run out of funds. Also, Google Pay won’t work if your connection is unstable. Moreover, the app won’t function properly if it’s outdated or if its cache files are corrupted.

Google Pay not working: 13 easy fixes

#1: Check if there are issues with your card

Even though Google Pay does glitch at times…

The most common problem users encounter isn’t really with the app itself. Rather, it’s with the credit or debit card they supplied.

So if your transaction using the app somehow failed…

The first thing you need to check is your card.

If you’re using a credit card with the app, verify if it hasn’t expired yet. You should quickly see the expiration date on the card itself.

Moreover, it’s possible your bank froze your card. It can happen if they detected suspicious activities or purchases.

In that case, get in touch with your bank to resolve it.

Now, if you’re using a debit card…

It might have run out of funds. So check your account to confirm that. And then add funds before you transact again with Google Pay.

How to add a card on Google Pay

In addition, you may also opt to add another card if the current 1 you’re using has issues. Here’s how:

Step #1: Launch the Google Pay app on your phone.

Step #2: Select Add to Wallet+.

Step #3: Tap the Payment card option.

Step #4: Click New credit or debit card

Step #5: Use your phone’s camera to capture your credit. You may also choose to enter your card details manually.

Step #6: Tap Save and accept the Issuer Terms.

At this point, you should see a message saying that your card is ready to use. 

However, if you see an error code, you may simply repeat the entire process.

#2: Verify if you’re having network connection problems

“Do I need an internet connection for Google Pay to work?”

That depends. If you’re using it via NFC contactless payment, no, you don’t.

Like Bluetooth, NFC doesn’t need the internet to work.

However, you’d need a WiFi or mobile data connection if you’re going to use Google Pay for the following:

  • Making online purchases.
  • Sending or receiving money.

So if you’re trying to do any of those and the transaction failed…

Check if you’re having network issues.

The fastest way to do that is by pulling up a web browser. And from there, try to open any website.

If the pages aren’t loading properly, then you likely have problems with your internet.

Now, if you’re using your home WiFi, a quick fix would be to reset your modem and router. Just unplug them from the outlet. And reconnect them after about 30 seconds to a minute.

For mobile data users, try to relocate to a spot where you can get a stronger signal. 

#3: Close and relaunch the Google Pay app

As I mentioned, the Google Pay app can also glitch temporarily. 

And that’s not necessarily because there’s something wrong with it. It’s just how most, if not all, applications behave occasionally.

So what you should do is close the app. And then wait for about a minute before relaunching it.

Another way to fix an app glitch is to restart your device.

Whether you’re using a phone or a tablet, power it off. Then, switch it back on after 1 to 2 minutes.

For many, a simple restart is enough to get the app to work again.

#4: Check if your receiver’s account is having issues

Here’s another common scenario with Google Pay:

You’re trying to send money. You know your card has no issues. Your internet’s also fine. Yet somehow, the transaction isn’t going through. And you’re getting error codes instead.

In that event, the problem is with the person you’re trying to send money to.

Their Google Pay account must be having issues.

1 common problem is the receiver failed to turn on “Help friends find and pay you”. So ask them to switch on this setting by doing the following steps:

Step #1: Open the Google Pay app.

Step #2: Go to the Pay screen and select your profile pic.

Step #3: Tap Settings followed by Privacy and Security.

Step #4: Click How people find you on Google Pay. Then turn on Help friends find and pay you.

Note: If you were able to send money with that setting turned off, the receiver won’t get it via the app. But they can still get the money within 7 days. They’ll just have to wait for a text or email from Google on how to claim it.

Another reason for failure to send money is the receiver’s Google Pay account has reached its limit.

Google only allows up to $25,000 per account. So the receiver will have to transfer some of that amount to receive money.

#5: Re-verify your account

Sometimes, Google Pay may ask you to verify your account again before a transaction.

But you don’t need to worry about it. It doesn’t mean your account is compromised. It’s simply part of Google’s security measures.

Now, verifying your account is easy. Just follow the steps below:

Step #1: Open a web browser and go to

Step #2: Log in to your account.

Step #3: Select Payment methods and look for the card with a note that says “Verification needed.”

Step #4: Click Verify followed by Get a code

Step #5: Go to your bank’s website or app. Then find GOOGLE on your card statement. The last 6 digits that you’ll see there are your verification code.

Step #6: Return to your Google Pay account and enter the code.

#6: Ensure that your phone has NFC

Are you trying to use Google Pay for contactless payments?

If so, see to it that your device is actually NFC-enabled.

Note: For iOS users, you won’t be able to use Google Pay for contactless payment even if your iPhone’s NFC is working or not. You’ll have to use Apple Pay instead. On iOS, Google Pay only works for online payments and peer-to-peer transactions.

So how would you know if your Android phone has NFC?

It’s simple. Just open Settings. And in the search bar, type NFC.

If the search didn’t yield any results, then your device doesn’t have it.

On the other hand, if an NFC menu opens, do the following:

  1. Select Contactless payments.
  2. Click Payment default.
  3. Tap Google Pay.

You might also want to know: 3 Easy Ways To Test If NFC Is Working

#7: Make sure your card works with contactless payment

Still on the topic of NFC.

Even if your phone has this feature…

You still need to ensure that your Google Pay card works with contactless payment.

In general, prepaid and ATM-only cards aren’t compatible with NFC terminals. And that’s regardless of the issuer.

But some banks also have certain debit or credit cards you can’t use with contactless payment. The following are examples of these:

  • HSBC’s Commercial Card.
  • Chase’s Contact Chase Card.
  • Discover’s Extraco Debit Card.
  • US Bank’s Temporary Debit Card.
  • Wells Fargo’s Visa Commercial Credit.

So to be sure, confirm with your bank if your card actually works on NFC terminals.

#8: Follow the correct practices when using NFC

So let’s say your phone is NFC-enabled. And your card is compatible with contactless payments. Yet, somehow, Google Pay still won’t process your transaction.

Well, first of all, see to it that you unlock your phone first. 

Google Pay won’t work on NFC terminals if your device is locked. This is another of Google’s safety measures to ensure that the app doesn’t just randomly swipe at items. 

You don’t need to open the app itself, though. As soon as you’ve unlocked your phone, try to swipe at the payment terminal again.

If you’re still not able to pay through the app…

Hold your device in a different position. Some phones have the NFC antenna at the top edge. While others have it in the middle back portion.

If it’s still not working, ask for another payment terminal from the vendor as that may be the issue.

Now, if you’d like a demonstration on how to make payments via Google Pay NFC…

Watch this video below:

#9: Clear Google Pay’s cache

Most, if not all, apps store cache files. These are information that make an app load faster whenever you open it.

However, sometimes, these files might get corrupted. And this will result in the app malfunctioning.

This can be the case with your Google Pay app. So you can also try to clear its cache. Just follow these steps on how to do it on an Android device:

Step #1: Make sure to close the Google Pay app first.

Step #2: Tap Settings and select Battery and device care.

Step #3: Click Memory, followed by Apps not used recently.

Step #4: Look for Google Pay and select it.

Step #5: Tap Storage.

Step #6: On the bottom of the screen, select Clear Cache. And then tap Clear Data.

“OK. How do you do that on an iPhone, though?”

The simple answer is you can’t. And that’s 1 of the reasons why some may say Android is better than iPhones.

#10: Update the Google Pay app

Update Google Pay App

Now, if clearing the Google Pay apps cache didn’t do the trick…

It might be because it’s already out of date.

Google periodically releases updates to patch software issues and add more features. So you must always keep this app up to date.

You may refer to the steps below on how to do it on Android or iOS.

How to update Google Pay on Android

Step #1: Launch the Google Play Store app.

Step #2: Select your profile icon on the screen’s upper right portion.

Step #3: Tap Manage apps & devices.

Step #4: If you see the Update button, click it.

How to update Google Pay on iOS

Step #1: Open the App Store.

Step #2: Search for Google Pay.

Step #3: Look for the Update button beside the app. And then tap it.

#11: Install updates for your smartphone’s OS

In addition to updating the Google Pay app…

You should also do that with your device’s OS. This is because outdated phone software may also cause problems with your apps.

Just ensure that you have a stable internet connection. And your phone should also have enough charge, preferably over 50%, before you update its OS.

How to update your Android device

Step #1: Click the Settings icon.

Step #2: Tap the About Phone option.

Step #3: Select Check for Updates.

Step #4: If there are available software updates, you’ll see an Update button. Click it to start the download and installation process.

How to update your iOS device

Step #1: Select Settings followed by General.

Step #2: Click Software Update.

Step #3: You should see a notification if software updates are available. Tap the Download and Install button. 

#12: Delete and reinstall Google Pay

Still having trouble with Google Pay?

If so, you should consider deleting and reinstalling the app.

“Wait, will that also delete my Google Pay account?”

No, it won’t. So you don’t have to worry about having to start over again. You’ll just have to log back in after reinstalling. 

Note: If your Android phone came preinstalled with Google Pay, you won’t be able to delete it.

How to delete and reinstall Google Pay on Android

Step #1: Launch the Google Play Store app.

Step #2: Tap your profile icon.

Step #3: Select Manage apps & devices then Manage.

Step #4: Look for Google Pay and click Uninstall.

Step #5: Close the Play Store app and wait for about a minute or 2.

Step #6: Relaunch Play Store and search for Google Pay.

Step #7: Click the Install button.

How to delete and reinstall Google Pay on iOS

Step #1: From your phone’s home screen, look for Google Pay. Then press and hold it.

Step #2: Tap Remove App.

Step #3: Click the Delete App option to confirm the removal.

Step #4: Wait for 1 to 2 minutes to ensure that the app’s complete deletion.

Step #5: Open the App Store.

Step #6: Search for Google Pay and then click Install.

#13: Contact Google for tech support

So you’ve tried all the fixes. Yet Google Pay still won’t work.

At this point, I’d highly recommend that you contact Google for support. Sometimes, the issue may only be fixable from their end.

To get in touch with a representative, just go to the Google Pay Help page. Just scroll to the bottom and click Google Pay to contact support.