Drivers can now pay for their fuel at the pump in the UK via a smartphone, following a partnership between Shell and PayPal.
The service is offered at participating Shell service stations in the UK via the Shell Motorist app for iOS and Android. Shell says the service will be available for Windows phones in the "near future".
It works in a few simple steps once you've registered with the app and have paired it to your PayPal account.
Once the driver arrives at the pump they stay in the car, open the Shell Motorist app and select 'Fill Up and Go'.
They then choose a maximum amount to authorise and scan the QR code at the pump. When the 'start refuelling' message appears, the driver leaves the phone in the car and refuels as normal.
The pump will stop dispensing once you reach the maximum fuel spend limit selected, and if you fill up less than that maximum amount you will only be charged for what you’ve used.
Transaction history and receipts are available in the app, and Shell Drivers’ Club loyalty points are awarded and visible through the app.
The service will be gradually introduced to the majority of Shell’s 1000 fuel stations, with the company targetting half of them in the UK to offer the technology by the end of the summer.
First trialled in 2013, Shell piloted the service to invited Shell Drivers’ Club customers in April this year.
“We’ve listened to our customers and know they will benefit from this innovation," said Michael Hominick, retail marketing manager at Shell UK. "They will now have the flexibility and convenience of paying without having to leave their car.
"Those who want to go in store and pay or purchase other items will still be able to, with the benefit of reduced queues."
Rob Harper, director of mobile commerce at PayPal UK added: “Our partnership with Shell takes us further down the road to the day you can leave your wallet at home and pay with your phone.”
Shell still prohibits the use of mobile phones at their forecourts, and a spokesperson from the company stressed that this new payment system is only for use from within a car.
"It is safe to use a mobile phone from within a parked, stationary vehicle on a forecourt. As a result, this new payment solution is an in-vehicle only experience and in line with Shell’s current policy," the spokesperson said.
"Shell has also worked with the London Fire Brigade, their Primary Authority Partner, on this payment solution and its implications for mobile use on the forecourt. They’ve confirmed in-vehicle use is safe," they added.
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