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FC Bayern’s Allianz Arena introduces innovative systems incl. Apple Pay

FC Bayern München head office at the Säbener Straße in Munich, Germany. (© CPD Football)
FC Bayern München head office at the Säbener Straße in Munich, Germany. © CPD Football

FC Bayern Munich is kicking off Apple Pay! The introduction of Apple Pay in Germany kicked off this Tuesday in the Allianz Arena. As part of a media event featuring Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (Chairman of the Board of FC Bayern München AG), Dr. Michael Diederich (Speaker of the Board of HypoVereinsbank), and Jürgen Muth (Managing Director of Allianz Arena München Stadion GmbH), FC Bayern took the opportunity to introduce other innovative, user-friendly systems that will underscore the Allianz Arena’s position as a technological leader and innovation driver among soccer stadiums around the world.

Apple Pay

Fast, simply, secure, contactless—Apple Pay is the state-of-the-art form of payment that has now arrived in Germany and the Allianz Arena. iPhone (Version 6 or higher, iOS 11 or higher) and Apple Watch users can use their devices at all kiosks and in the fan shops in the Allianz Arena beginning with the next home game (against Leipzig on December 19). To take advantage of these convenient services, users need only hold the top edge of their iPhone/Apple Watch to the payment terminal—no PIN required, authorized users are verified via Face ID or Touch ID, or by double-clicking on the Apple Watch.

“We are very proud to offer this forward-looking payment option using cell phones in the Allianz Arena in conjunction with our partner Apple,” says Karl-Heinz Rummenigge. “Continuous modernization and innovation are a hallmark of FC Bayern München. We are continually investing in new technologies to keep the Allianz Arena current with the state of the art.”

Apple Pay is available from the start to all customers of participating banks, such as HypoVereinsbank. In order to use Apple Pay, the user’s credit card or EC card issued by a participating bank must be linked to the user’s Wallet app.

Contactless payment system

Visitors to the Allianz Arena will no longer be required to have an Arena Card; the stadium is opening its payment system to all debit and credit cards. Newer-generation cards that support data exchange via near-field communication (NFC) can also be used for contactless payment. The card can simply be held within a few inches of the payment terminal, and the amount is automatically charged to the card. Alternatively, the card can also be inserted into the terminal.

“Even in our 14th year of operating the Allianz Arena, we continue to improve the stadium. User-friendliness is very important to us. I am therefore particularly excited that we can offer an even more effective payment service—and that at the request of our visitors,” says Jürgen Muth, Managing Director of Allianz Arena München Stadion GmbH.

The implementation of the new systems (NFC and Apple Pay) was made possible with the support of HypoVereinsbank, which provided the Allianz Arena with approximately 250 state-of-the-art payment terminals. Mobile snack and drink vendors, who service visitors directly in their seats, will also be able to accept NFC payment in the next year.

“Contactless payment will soon be the standard for payment in the private sector,” says Dr. Michael Diederich, Speaker of the Board of HypoVereinsbank. “By equipping the entire Allianz Arena with this technology, we are once again demonstrating that we are a true innovation driver when it comes to our customers’ interests. Long lines for snacks, drinks, and fan gear are now a thing of the past. Our joint pursuit of the highest quality is what binds HVB and FCB together and brings out our peak performance.”

“We have partnered closely with FC Bayern for years and offer our customers a whole range of FC Bayern products,” Diederich ads. “At the same time, we have served as the club’s bank for 15 years, making possible exclusive projects such as the Allianz Arena.”

The added cash-free payment systems were successfully tested during recent home games. Customers are, however, asked to understand that payment processes may occasionally be delayed as a result of system limitations.

Important: Nothing will change for holders of the well-established Arena Card! Arena Cards will still be accepted as a means of payment. For the time being, payment upon exiting parking structures P1-3 will only be possible with an Arena Card. Starting in the 2019-20 season, new innovations are planned here as well in order to increase user-friendliness.

NFC ticketing

In cooperation with Apple, FC Bayern will be the first member of the Bundesliga to offer its fans a convenient, digital ticket solution. Beginning immediately, visitors to the stadium can load their tickets into their Apple Wallets, and need only hold their iPhone/Apple Watch to the ticket scanner at stadium access points. Smartphones do not need to be switched on or establish an Internet connection. Nor must the user open an app or unlock the device. All scanners at the turnstiles have been equipped with the latest NFC technology in cooperation with the technical supplier SKIDATA.

“Our goal is to process ticketing using only digital technology so that in the future we can phase out paper tickets entirely. In addition to maximizing user-friendliness, this step represents a valuable contribution to environmental protection and is thus a further measure in our sustainability strategy,” says Karl-Heinz Rummenigge. Nevertheless, printed tickets, Print@Home and mobile tickets with QR codes can still be used for stadium access.

(FC Bayern München)