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Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) Services in Malaysia

Wong Shu Lee  

|

  April 14, 2022

If you have done any online shopping, you might have noticed that some e-commerce merchants are offering you a new way to check out. A whole slew of Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) platforms have recently appeared in Malaysia. They promise an easy way to afford your latest purchase, usually without any interest or fees. But how do they work, and what’s the catch? 

 

What is Buy Now, Pay Later?

 

BNPL platforms let you make purchases by splitting the cost into monthly instalments, usually at 0% interest. Alternatively, some platforms let you delay the payment until the end of the month, or the following month. The catch is that they might charge you late payment fees if you don’t pay up.

 

Here’s how it works:

 

  • When you purchase something through a participating retailer, you can choose to pay via a BNPL platform.
  • You may be asked to make a down payment, typically the first month’s instalment of the purchase amount.
  • You pay off the rest through monthly instalments.

 

Below are some popular BNPL platforms available in Malaysia. 

 

PayLater by Grab

 

 

Grab’s PayLater offers two modes of repayment. You can either pay in four monthly instalments, or pay the entire amount next month. You only get GrabRewards points when you pay through the latter.

 

If you miss a payment, your PayLater account will be frozen, and you will have to pay an RM10 administration fee to reactivate it – this is only applicable for customers who choose the monthly installment payment method only. The maximum fee you’ll incur is RM30.

 

Atome

 

 

Atome is a Singapore-based platform that’s one of the largest BNPL players in Asia. It lets you shop at over 2,000+ retailers online and in-store. It supports popular brand names like Zalora and Agoda. 

 

It charges a relatively high penalty of RM30 per late payment, although the maximum late fees you can incur is RM60.

 

Split

 

 

Split, Malaysia’s first Shariah-compliant BNPL platform, is currently the only platform on this list that doesn’t charge any late fees.

 

Split doesn’t disclose your purchase limit before you sign up. Instead, it algorithmically decides to approve a transaction on a case-to-case basis.

 

Should you Buy Now, Pay Later?

 

BNPL can be useful if you want to make big purchases without significantly affecting your monthly cash flow. Here are a few situations where it can make sense:

 

  • If you can repay on time.
  • If you need to make a necessary or emergency purchase – such as replacing a broken-down fridge – and you want more time to make repayments.

 

If these situations don’t apply, let’s consider delaying the purchase until you have enough saved. After all, buying now and paying later means borrowing from your future self. Ask yourself, does it worth? 

 

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