This New Affirm Credit Card Lets You Buy Now and Pay Later with No Fees. Should You Sign Up?
by Natasha Gabrielle | Updated July 27, 2021 - First published on March 1, 2021
The brand new Affirm Card will give consumers access to a debit card with buy now, pay later features -- but is this a card worth having in your wallet?
You may have heard of the company Affirm. It became popular by partnering with retailers to provide buy now, pay later point-of-sale loans. This made it possible for consumers to purchase items right away without a credit card and then make payments to pay off their purchases. In addition to providing buy now, pay later loans, Affirm now offers a card, called the Affirm Card. Unlike a credit card, this card functions as a debit card and also offers a buy now, pay later feature. Keep reading to learn more about this new no-fee card and decide if you should sign up.
What is the Affirm Card?
The Affirm Card is not a traditional credit card. Instead, it functions more like a debit card and offers consumers the chance to make bigger purchases and pay back the debt over time without paying high interest charges. Just like Affirm point-of-sale buy now, pay later loans, the Affirm Card charges no hidden fees. Consumers get to pay for their purchase over time in interest-free installments. Since over one-third of U.S. consumers have used buy now, pay later services, it's easy to see why the Affirm Card was developed.
With the Affirm Card, you can do one of the following:
- Pay for a purchase in full, using your attached bank account to fund the purchase
- Convert an eligible purchase into a pay-over-time transaction
Purchases over $100 are eligible for pay-over-time functionality and will be split into four interest-free payments. The card can be used online or for in-store purchases, and the physical card will be available in several colors. The Affirm Card will be widely available later in 2021, but until then, consumers who are interested in this card's offerings can sign up for the waitlist.
The interest-free offer is credit-based
While there are no annual fees to use this card, you may be charged other fees. Before opening a new Affirm Card, it's important to know that not all consumers will be eligible for the 0% intro APR promotion. Just like Affirm loans, the company notes that the 0% to 30% APR rate offered is based on credit and is subject to an eligibility check. Some consumers may have an interest rate above 0%, and some may need to make a down payment to use the card's buy now, pay later functionality.
Should you sign up for this card?
This card is an excellent option for people who want the flexibility to buy more expensive items without worrying about high credit card interest fees. The card can be used as a debit card for everyday purchases, and more costly purchases can be paid off in installments.
It may also be a good fit for someone who likes to know what they owe and how many payments need to be made before their debt is paid off. This card will clearly outline payment amounts and due dates and break a purchase into four payments. That way, there's no guessing or confusion. Consumers can improve their financial responsibility and build good money habits by using this card.
This card may not be a good fit for consumers looking to earn rewards on their regular spending. This card doesn't offer the rewards potential or bonus point offers that many top rewards credit cards do.
The Affirm Card also may not be a good fit for someone with poor credit or little credit. The 0% interest rate is based on credit, and not everyone will qualify. For those who do qualify but are given a higher interest rate, this card would be similar to owning a traditional, high-interest card, which defeats the purpose of getting the Affirm Card.
The bottom line
The Affirm Card is something that many consumers can benefit from using. Before signing up for a card like this, though, it's essential to consider your credit situation. It would be best if you also looked through all terms and conditions to make sure you understand what you're getting into before you have the card. If used properly, the Affirm Card can be a smart way to pay for larger purchases without paying fees.
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