Buy Now, Pay Later Upside Down.

April 21, 2022 Consumers Business Posts

How COVID Has Turned Buy Now, Pay Later Upside Down. ”
More consumers are ending up paying for a product before they even get it—if they get it at all.

When KZ Win spotted an attractive set of Lunar New Year plates and other items on the Williams Sonoma website last April, he quickly added them to his shopping cart.

Then, at checkout, he saw a buy-now-pay-later button, which would let him spread out the $230 cost of his purchases over three months, with no fees and interest.

Win, a 51-year-old IT engineer in Dallas, clicked on the deferred payment option, which was offered through Affirm, a third-party financing company. He soon received part of his order. But shortly after he made his final payment, he was told that delivery of the Lunar New Year plates would be delayed.

“I figured I would wait as long as necessary,” he says. “I understood the pandemic was causing shipping delays.”

But in mid-December, Win was told his remaining order was canceled because payment had not been received. He repeatedly called and emailed both Williams Sonoma and Affirm seeking a refund for the plates. But Affirm told him the 60-day deadline to claim a refund had passed, and Williams Sonoma said he had to contact Affirm for a refund.

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