As Australians look for smarter ways to shop and manage their finances, retailers and businesses are offering customers more convenient payment options, like Ezi-Pay.
How does Ezi-Pay work?
Ezi-Pay, also known as Certegy Ezi-Pay, offers buy-now-pay-later payment plans at merchants around Australia.
Using Ezi-Pay, you can make a purchase with an initial deposit and have the remaining balance direct-debited in instalments each fortnight.
How do I sign up for Ezi-Pay?
When you shop at a participating retailer, you can apply for an Ezi-Pay account in-store when you make a purchase.
Alternatively, you can apply for pre-approval by filling out an application form online. You’ll then be given a pre-approval limit and number that you can use to shop with at participating merchants.
The deposit amount and the number of months you have to pay for your purchase can vary by retailer, so your approval will be finalised once you make a purchase.
To be eligible to apply, you need to be:
- At least 18 years old
- A permanent Australian resident
- Working at least 30 hours per week, or an aged or veteran’s pensioner
And you’ll need to provide the following information:
- Proof of identity (Australian driver’s licence, or aged or veteran’s pension card)
- Employment details
- Financial details (income, assets and liabilities)
What’s the catch?
Theoretically, Ezi-Pay might make it easier to stay on top of your finances by allowing you to pay off purchases in manageable instalments with no interest.
However, keep in mind that there are a number of fees that come with having an Ezi-Pay account, including the following:
- A one-off establishment fee of between $35 and $90 to set up your account
- A monthly account-keeping fee of $3.50, which will be direct-debited while your account is active
- A $2.95 payment processing fee to process each repayment
- An additional purchase fee of $22 payable over the purchase repayment period for additional purchases
There are also other fees and charges applied if you change something or don’t make a payment, which are outlined in the Certegy Ezi-Pay continuing credit payment plan agreement.
What are the pros of Ezi-Pay?
You won’t pay interest – Unlike using a credit card or certain other payment plans, you don’t have to pay interest on items you buy using Ezi-Pay.
You can pay over time – Spreading repayments out over time can make it easier to manage your finances, especially if you’re on a tight budget but need to make a big purchase.
You’ll have your purchase straight away – You can get a hold of your item as soon as you buy it, even if you don’t have the funds available to pay for it in full.
What are the cons of Ezi-Pay?
Fees – There are a suite of fees associated with having an Ezi-Pay account, which can add up over time.
Repayments must be made fortnightly – You’ll need to have funds available to make repayments every fortnight, otherwise you’ll have to pay a fee.
You could spend beyond your means – Your credit limit increases as you make repayments, so you could be tempted to buy items you can’t afford.
Like any financial product or service, read the fine print carefully so you know what you’re signing up for.