Top 5 Buy Now, Pay Later Options and Why You Should Be Using Them

Buy now, pay later is a way of paying for the goods and services you want and need. It’s easier than using a credit card. BNPL gives you the flexibility to shop what you want, when you want, without worrying about whether you have enough money.

Perfect for online shopping, and budgeting your spending, buy now, pay later lets you have high value items now and then you can slowly pay them off between 3 and 4 scheduled payments.

Each buy now, pay later service is different. Most will charge you interest, and there may be consequences if you don’t pay what you owe. There is one, however, that is extremely customer friendly and won’t charge you interests or penalties. 

Buy now, pay later services are really useful, especially in times where we can only shop from home and when we’re on a budget. They’re easier than dealing with a traditional credit card.

Zilch is the easiest buy now, pay later service to use. It has a really clear website that explains how Zilch works and how to sign up. Signing up is free. A soft credit check is required. It takes only 3 minutes to approve and then you’re given a specific amount for your spend and can start shopping. They will never charge you interest fees and there are no extra fees if you miss a payment. When you miss a payment, your Zilch card is placed on hold so you can’t spend anymore. You will never fall into debt using Zilch. Zilch has one payment option making it super simple to use. You pay back your purchase over 4 payments that are spread over 6 weeks. You cannot buy anything else with your Zilch card until your first purchase has been paid off fully.

Highlighted Features:

  • 4 easy payments, over 6 weeks
  • 0% interest always
  • Free to sign up and only takes 3 minutes before you’re approved
  • Access to limited balance, saving customers from debt
  • Ability to stall payments by 4 extra days
  • Customers save over £350 per year on interest and fees
  • Soft credit check (won’t affect credit score)
  • Shop over 5000 retailers
If this is your first time using a buy now, pay later service, or you’re simply curious, we strongly recommend signing up for Zilch. Zilch has taken everything other buy now, pay later services have done and made their service really simple and consumer friendly.

Like Zilch, Zip has one payment option. You spread your purchase across 4 equal payments over 6 weeks.

The difference is that Zip will charge you default fees up to £20 if you fail to pay back your purchase on time. Your spend limit will also decrease if this happens.

Depending on your credit score, you can be approved for up to a £1000 spend.

Zip will perform a credit check before you’re able to use their service. Verification can take up to 48 hours.

Highlighted Features:

  • 4 payments, over 6 weeks
  • Up to £1000 spend
  • Miss payments and a default fee applies and account freezes
  • Credit check required
  • Shop over 1000 retailers

Payl8r gives the option of three different payment options. You need to be careful with the option you choose. It will determine whether or not you will pay interest.

Option 1 is called “Speedy”: It gives you 30 days to pay them back before they start charging interest.

Option 2 is called “Split”: This option includes interest payments. You are given the option to split your payments across 3, 6, 9, or 12 months.

Option 3 is called “Spread”: This option allows you to spread your payments across a specific period of time with no interest.

Their site doesn’t go into detail on each item. It appears as if you have to sign up first before you can get the full details, which we find a bit sketchy.

Highlighted Features:

  • 3 payment options
  • 3 sign up options
  • Interest applies after 30 days
  • Credit check is required
  • Miss payments will affect credit score
  • Shop over 1000 retailers

This BNPL option is unique because Paypal Credit acts just like a credit card. You sign up and are given a Paypal Credit limit.

You pay 0% interest for 4 months on purchases greater than £99. After 4 months, if you have not paid your balance, you will be charged a very high rate of interest.

To keep your 0% interest status, you must keep up with your monthly payments, and not go over your credit limit.

Highlighted Features:

  • 0% interest for 4 months on a purchase of £99 plus
  • Credit limit
  • Works just like a credit card
  • Shop anywhere Paypal is offered
  • Any purchase under £99 will be charged 19.9% interest

5. Klarna

“The Most Complicated BNPL Service”

Klarna is on this list because it is one of the first buy now, pay later services to be available. They now provide their BNPL service through their Klarna app. I consider it one of the most complicated because of all the options with different terms and conditions for each. You have to be careful with which option you choose.

They have three different payments plans:

  • Pay in 3: You will spread the cost of your purchase into 3 interest-free instalments. The first instalment is taken at point of purchase and the remaining instalments are scheduled to automatically be paid every 30 days. Not making your payments can affect your ability to use Klarna in the future, as well as your credit score.
  • Pay in 30 days: You can have your purchase now, but won’t have to pay anything for up to 30 days. This option states no interest or additional fees and it won’t affect your credit score. But be warned, if you fail to pay on time, Klarna may engage with external debt collection agencies (which WILL affect your credit score).
  • Financing: This option allows you to spread the cost of your purchase over 6-36 months. This involves a hard credit check, which will affect your credit score. Failure to pay will affect your credit score.

HIghlighted Features:

  • 3 payments options
  • Interest occurs after 6 months
  • Fail to pay on time will go to debt collection (affects credit score)
  • Credit check required
  • Shop over 5000 retailers

The Best Buy Now, Pay Later Service to Use

If this is your first time using a buy now, pay later service, or you’re simply curious, we strongly recommend signing up for Zilch. Zilch has taken everything other buy now, pay later services have done and made their service really simple and consumer friendly.
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