A “buy-now-pay-later” service, Afterpay is a digital platform that helps shoppers to break up the payments of purchases into four, interest-free, installments, with each payment equaling 25% of the total price. It’s like the layaway services that were so popular in the 1980s and 1990s, except you get to take your purchase with you right away! Let’s say you are shopping in a clothing store and the amount at the checkout ends up being $100.
With Afterpay, you’d put down $25, and then pay an added three payments of $25 every two weeks, afterward, until the balance is paid off. You still get to take home and enjoy what you’ve purchased that day: you just get the opportunity to pay it off over six weeks.
Afterpay is an excellent option for those looking to shop or purchase big-ticketed items, but want to stay away from credit card debt, and are working on a budget. There is no interest on what you pay, and no added fees, as long as you pay on time; however, whenever a client does miss a payment, they are charged an $8 fee, and Afterpay use is suspended until payments are resolved.
Some stipulations need to be met when using Afterpay. Purchases need to equal out to $35+, and users must be over the age of 18, with a credit or debit card to qualify. Spending limits are (generally) capped at about $400 to $500 for new users, but once you establish a good repayment history, this can be increased.
Thanks to the zero-interest attached to purchases, Afterpay makes a great alternative to credit cards. In fact, approvals to this platform are instant, and many who don’t always get approved for traditional credit products often can gain access to Afterpay, as no credit checks are performed. For those with no credit history, Afterpay is a great option; however, it’s important to note that as the service is not linked to your credit score, this does make it hard for those new to the world of credit to build their credit history.
You can use Afterpay at multiple stores for a variety of purchases, as long as you haven’t hit your capped limit or missed a payment. From J. Crew to children’s stores like Carters, as well as, Bed, Bath, and Beyond, Mac Cosmetics, Old Navy and the Gap, plus high-end retailers like Steve Madden, Jimmy Choo, and Pandora, the list of brands available with Afterpay is plentiful for U.S. residents. They also offer an extensive list of small businesses where Afterpay is accepted.
Afterpay is also available for those living in the Great White North, and the Canadian Afterpay retailers that accept this service as payment are vast and growing. Top brands like Roots, Ardene, American Eagle, Aritzia, Ugg, and Lush are a few examples of places Canadians can shop at using the digital payment platform.
So, how do you get started? Visit the Afterpay website and register. You’ll need a mobile number to get started with a verification code sent to you so that you can initially access your account. Approval occurs within moments. Users can also download the Afterpay app on their smartphone or device, from Google Play or App Store.
After you are registered, simply go to the Afterpay website or app, choose their “Shop Directory” and start shopping! The link directs you to each individual retailer’s site. After you have selected the items you want to buy, choose Afterpay as your method of payment at the checkout. If you are a first-time user, you’ll have to enter in payment details (either a debit or credit card information) but returning Afterpay users simply sign into their account. Once you complete your online purchase, your items will be shipped to you by the store itself. After you are done, head to the “Payment Schedule” link on your Afterpay account to view the payment dates and amounts. You can proactively make a payment or simply wait for Afterpay to automatically withdraw the funds from either your debit or credit accounts on the due dates noted.
An interesting aspect when navigating on the Afterpay website and app is how they display discounts or promos for their participating retailers. It makes it that much easier for online shoppers to note what is on sale, and where they can save even more money. It is important to note, some retailers solely use Afterpay in-store or online.
For more information visit Afterpay.