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Buy now, pay later booms for pensioners

The UK’s older generation, not just the young, are also turning to BNPL in record numbers

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‘Buy now, pay later’ services are booming among older people, according to new research.

The percentage of pensioners using BNPL services, UK Finance’s latest Payment Markets Report found, doubled in 2022 compared to the previous year. 

“Many BNPL providers rely extensively on colourful, upbeat social media marketing strategies that appeal to young shoppers. It is therefore no surprise that those aged 25 to 34 reported using BNPL most,” Myron Jobson, senior personal finance analyst, Interactive Investor, said. 

“However, the appeal of BNPL has broadened. It is interesting that the percentage of pensioners using BNPL services doubled in 2022 compared to the previous year. This suggests that pensioners feeling the cost-of-living pinch have turned to BNPL services to cover costs,” he added. 

UK Finance’s report also found contactless payments continued to rise rapidly in 2022 with an increase of almost a third (30 per cent) year-on-year.

“The jump in contactless payment in 2022 – up by almost a third year-on-year – points to the staying power of the switch from cash to cashless payment during the pandemic to stop the spread of the infection. Some businesses that went card-only during the pandemic haven’t reverted to accepting cash – and don’t intend on doing so,” Jobson added.

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