Card readers

A credit card reader or terminal is a device that you can use to accept credit and debit card payments by tapping, inserting, or swiping cards, or by manually entering card information. Card readers are typically small card-swipe devices that plug into your Shopify POS device. An external reader is usually a separate, standalone piece of hardware.

Accepted card types

Shopify's supported card readers accept payment from all major types of credit card, as well as Debit Mastercard and Visa Debit cards.

Tip

If you have trouble swiping a Debit Mastercard or Visa Debit card with a Swipe reader, then try entering the card number manually.

In Canada, the Swipe card readers can't accept payment from debit cards that are Interac only (for example, Interac cards that aren't Debit Mastercard or Visa Debit). If you want to accept Interac-only debit cards, as well as other types of credit and debit cards, then you need to use the Moneris terminal (Canada only).

If you use an external card reader, then you need to check with your payment processor which card types your terminal accepts.

Choose a card reader

Which card reader you choose depends on where you're located, which payment provider you use, and what device you're using to run Shopify POS.

Shopify POS has several supported card readers:

  • The Swipe card readers
  • The Tap, Chip, and Swipe card reader
  • The Moneris iPP320 terminal

These supported card readers are integrated with Shopify POS, so you can take a payment from Shopify POS, and then the details for the transaction will appear in Shopify in the order's timeline. To use a supported card reader, your store needs to be in a supported country and use a compatible payment provider.

You can also use an unsupported external card reader. You can find an external terminal provider anywhere in the world, and because the payment is processed outside of Shopify, you don't have to set up a specific payment provider in your Shopify admin.

The disadvantages of an external terminal are that you need an account with your terminal provider, and that Shopify will show the payment status of an order but not any transaction details.

Card reader Supported countries Compatible payment providers (iOS) Compatible payment providers (Android)
Tap, Chip, and Swipe (EMV) card reader United States, United Kingdom, or Ireland Shopify Payments N/A
Swipe (audio-jack) card reader United States or Canada Shopify Payments or a POS-supported payment provider Shopify Payments
Swipe (30 pin) card reader Canada Shopify Payments or a POS-supported payment provider N/A
Swipe (Lightning) card reader Canada Shopify Payments or a POS-supported payment provider N/A
Moneris iPP320 card reader Canada (available only from Moneris) Payment is processed by Moneris via the app's built-in integration N/A
External card terminal Anywhere Payment is processed by your terminal provider outside of Shopify. Payment is processed by your terminal provider outside of Shopify.

Note

You need the retail package to use a card reader with a POS-supported payment provider.

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