It should come as no surprise that hardly everyone these days has — or wants — a credit card. And, while consumers need to create a credit history for major purchases such as home purchases, these cards aren’t necessarily the most convenient way to do so.
Then some simply do not want to pay in advance to purchase the items on their wish lists. That’s where “buy now, pay later” websites come in – and they’re becoming increasingly popular.
As the name implies, these services let you shop for products you desire right now and pay for them later. Are you curious about the top buy now, pay later websites we discovered? Then, please continue reading to learn everything there is to know about them.
What Is ‘Buy Now, Pay Later?
Buy now, pay later is a payment method that allows you to purchase products now and pay for them later. Most, if not all, of these programs, require you to pay at least the first installment or offer a down payment at the time of purchase. Buy now, pay later websites, on the other hand, often use a “pay in 4” technique, in which customers make the first payment at the time of purchase and then have six weeks to pay the remaining three installments. Buy now, pay later services often demand at least the first installment be paid at the time of purchase.
Even though they are not credit cards in the traditional sense, several programs provide customers with a credit limit. And with responsible usage and on-time payments, that amount can be increased. For some, paying this way is simply easier than applying for and receiving a credit card through standard channels.
Do Companies That Sell Now and Pay Later Check Your Credit?
Almost every purchase now, pay later website requires at least a “soft” credit check — that is, they still examine credit reports, but it does not affect your score because the check isn’t tied to a specific credit application.
Most buy now, pay later organizations to state whether or not their way of checking will affect your credit score. If you have any reservations, it’s recommended to contact the company’s support service to get your queries answered.
The Top 5 Buy Now, Pay Later Websites
Buy now, pay later schemes are becoming so common that if one doesn’t meet your requirements, there are certain to be a number more that do. When purchasing online, you may be accustomed to seeing names like Affirm, Afterpay, and Klarna as payment alternatives. Still, the sheer number of these programs has grown significantly since their inception. And several well-known retailers are now collaborating with them. Here’s a rundown of five buy now, pay later applications and websites worth considering, as well as for instructions on how to use them.
Affirm is one of the most well-known buys now, pay later websites, with hundreds of shops accepting it as a payment option. This service is available at a plethora of merchants in various categories, including accessories and clothes, electronics and home, and travel and wedding. There are also categories such as Black-owned businesses, making it easier to support this particular community.
Affirm also claims that there are “no hidden fees – not even late fees.” However, it’s crucial to know that using the service implies your annual percentage rate — or APR — will be 0 percent or 10% to 30% depending on your credit and is subject to an eligibility check. Payment choices through Affirm come from various loan partners, and options vary depending on the size of your transaction, up to $17,500. You may also be required to make a down payment.
This is how it works: Shop your favorite supported shops, and then when you’re ready to check out, choose “Affirm” as your payment method. Of course, you’ll need to provide a few details before selecting your chosen payment schedule. The good news is that you’ll see the item’s price straight away, as well as the interest you’ll pay — if any — and the total you’ll pay when it’s all said and done. Then all you have to do is check in to the website or download the app and make your payments on time. Plus, if you shop at many locations, the interface will show you how much you owe overall, so you won’t have to track down every store you’ve visited.
Afterpay is another popular purchase now, pay later site that many online businesses use as a payment option. You may sign up on the company’s website or through their app; all you need is your email, phone number, address, date of birth, and a debit or credit card. According to Afterpay, there are “no external credit checks, no interest, no fees when you pay on time, [and] no surprises.” However, you have an “available spend” limit (like a credit limit). In addition, if you are late on payments, you will be charged late fees, which are capped at 25% of the purchase price. Likewise, if you miss a payment to Afterpay, you’ll have to pay late fees, which are capped at 25% of the purchase amount.
When you use Afterpay, you make your initial payment when you buy an item, and the remainder of the money is due later. You’ll be given an initial amount to spend, which can help you keep inside your budget. And, as long as you make on-time payments, your public spending should grow over time. Are you concerned about missing a payment? Afterpay provides reminders, but if you miss one, your account will be paused until you catch up.
How it works: To begin, you must download the Afterpay app. Then you can go shopping for your favorite brands. Then, when it’s time to check out, look over the payment plan and select Afterpay as your payment method. You’ll make the first of four payments up front; then, the remaining balance will be paid in three installments over the next six weeks.
Furthermore, this service is now offered in-store at select merchants. To use Afterpay in-store, download the app, set up the Afterpay Card, and add it to your Apple or Google wallet. You may use the in-app map to locate a participating store in your area. When you’re finished shopping and ready to pay, all you have to do is authorize the card for payment. Tap to pay after selecting “pay in-store now with Apple Pay or Google Pay.” Then you can take your purchases home and pay for them over six weeks in four installments.
When you use the Klarna app to shop, you may store your favorite items and create price alerts for when the price reduces. You can also use the app to get unique offers, and if you join the rewards program, you may earn points on every transaction. You can also obtain curated wish lists so you can simply locate ideas matched to your preferences. You may also shop online using the Klarna Chrome extension.
When you utilize Klarna’s Pay in 4 plan, a “soft” credit check is performed. However, this should not have an impact on your credit score. You will not be charged interest if you “Pay in 4” and make your payments on schedule. Klarna sends out reminders when payments are due, but if you miss one, you may be charged a late fee. Fortunately, Klarna specifies a late fee of “no more than $7.”
This is how it works: Shop online or in-store with the app, then pay with Klarna. According to their website, the service lets you “test before you purchase, or pay overtime” and offers a variety of payment choices to accommodate any budget. If you choose Pay in 4, the cost of your purchase will be divided into four interest-free payments to be made every two weeks. If you select Pay later in 30 days, you will be able to begin enjoying your purchase right away. Keep what you want and give the rest back. When you’re satisfied with your order, you can pay the remaining balance using a valid credit card, debit card, or bank account. You will also not be charged any interest or fees.
There’s also 6- to 36-month financing available, which is perfect for larger purchases. However, keep in mind that the APR is 19.99 percent in these scenarios, and interest will be levied in qualifying situations. There is no annual charge. However, there are late payments and returned payment costs of up to $35. However, Klarna does not levy an over-the-limit fee.
Quadpay allows customers to do everything from arranging a trip to purchase online or in-store and order groceries and pay bills. Quadpay is accepted wherever Visa is accepted. Quadpay members are not subjected to a hard credit check. Thus your credit score is unaffected. While the company charges no interest, you must pay a $1 convenience fee for each payment. In the grand scheme of things, buying now and paying later is a minor price to pay! Quadpay can be used wherever Visa is accepted.
How it works: Quadpay, like another buy now, pay later website, allows you to buy today and then pay four interest-free installments over six weeks. You may shop online by finding your favorite stores and adding things to your cart using the app. When it’s time to pay, double-check that your cart total matches the payment request. Quadpay saves your payment information so you can check out quickly.
If you want to shop in-store, you’ll also need the app. In the app, you should see an available balance and will need to toggle in-store, then enter your purchase amount, including taxes and shipping if required. Create a virtual card and finish your transaction by swiping, dipping, or tapping. Add Quadpay to your Apple or Google wallet for even easier access.
You can shop more than 34,000 stores if you buy now and pay later with Sezzle online or in-app. This figure covers big-box stores like Target and retailers like Brandless, Melt Cosmetics, Crunchyroll, and a slew of others.
This is how it works: Sign up for the service, and you will receive an instant approval decision. Then shop at any of the tens of thousands of participating retailers, and when it’s time to check out, choose Sezzle! Your total order will be divided into four interest-free payments over six weeks. You will avoid fees and do not affect your credit if you pay on time.
Large Corporations Are Getting Involved
These stand-alone buy now, pay later programs have risen in popularity to the point where larger corporations are entering the fray. For example, Apple just launched their buy now, pay later program called Apple Pay Later, and PayPal has its service called Pay in 4. With these two titans on board, it’s only a matter of time until more follow suit.
PayPal, like another, buy now, pay later websites, allows you to select Pay in 4 after checkout and then make one payment every two weeks to pay off your item. According to reports, Apple Pay Later will have comparable characteristics, such as spreading out the purchase into four interest-free payments delivered every two weeks. Apple, on the other hand, appears to allow you to pay over time with interest.