A Guide to Payment Gateways in the UK

Payment gateways have revolutionized the way we transact online. They provide a bridge between the customer’s payment method and the merchant’s bank account, making it easier for merchants to receive payments from customers. This article will explore the pros and cons of some of the most popular payment gateways UK.


PayPal is a popular payment gateway with over 20 million registered accounts in the UK. Its most significant pro is its ease of use. PayPal accounts are free to set up, and users only need to link them to their bank accounts or credit/debit cards to make payments. PayPal also has a strong customer protection policy. If a customer raises a dispute over a transaction, PayPal will investigate and protect them from fraudulent activities. However, PayPal charges relatively high fees, especially for international transactions. Also, PayPal’s customer support may take time to resolve issues.


Stripe is a fast-growing payment gateway, with over 1.2 million global merchants. Stripe prides itself on its personalized customer experience, with a user-friendly dashboard that allows merchants to view sales and manage disputes easily. Stripe is also known for its advanced security measures, protecting customers’ financial data. However, Stripe is not cheap. Its fees, though not as high as PayPal’s, can still eat into a merchant’s profits. Also, Stripe’s payment processing time can take a few days, which may be a drawback for merchants who need quick access to their funds.

Amazon Pay:

Amazon Pay is a payment gateway that allows customers to use the payment methods stored in their Amazon accounts to make purchases from other websites. One significant pro is its credibility. Amazon’s reputation for security and trustworthy transactions is transferred to merchants using Amazon Pay. Additionally, Amazon Pay has fast processing times, with payouts being made almost instantly. However, Amazon Pay may not be accessible to all customers in the UK, with issues such as account information being outdated. Also, the payment gateway is not widely adopted, meaning merchants may find it challenging to attract customers who prefer to use other payment options.

Apple Pay:

Apple Pay is a payment gateway that enables users to make purchases using their Apple devices, such as iPhones, iPads, and MacBooks. Its most significant pro is its convenience. It allows users to pay for goods and services instantly with just a touch of their device. Apple Pay also has high-security measures that keep user information safe. However, Apple Pay is only accessible to users who own Apple devices and have linked their payment methods to their Apple account. Additionally, Apple Pay has a limited adoption rate, with many merchants still not accepting the payment option.


Bitcoin is a decentralized payment gateway that uses digital currency to complete transactions. Its significant pro is its level of privacy, with transactions being untraceable to individuals. Bitcoin also has fast processing times, and it has no chargeback fees. However, Bitcoin faces several drawbacks, with its confusing and complex payment process raising concerns in the UK. Additionally, Bitcoin is a volatile currency, with its value fluctuating significantly, making it a high-risk payment gateway.

Payment gateways have undoubtedly made transacting online more accessible, faster and efficient. Each payment gateway has its pros and cons, and the best option depends on your business’s specific needs. Ultimately, it is essential to choose the payment gateway that aligns with your business goals, customer preferences as well as allowing you to maximize revenue while minimizing payment processing fees.