Buy Now Pay Later for Travel

Written by Robert Ferry on September 19, 2022
Buy Now Pay Later for Travel

If you don't have enough money to travel and your vacations are on board, the best way is to use Buy Now Pay Later service. Airlines and financing companies started services that provide you the opportunity to enjoy your vacations now and pay for them later.

Several reliable payment services like PayPal, Affirm, and Uplift are preferred partners of airlines and companies that offer book now and pay later services. The BNPL for travel can be with or without interest or charges based on your required service.

If you use the Buy Now and Pay Later service for the first time, it's good to know the service in detail. This article will provide you with the basics of these financing services, so you can easily plan your vacation package, flights, rental services, and hotel reservations with BNPL.

Also, most airlines started their flight options, and vacation packages following the book now pay later service. You can check multiple airlines with the BNPL option to manage your travel within your budget.

In this article, we will look at the different features of BNPL travel, its working mechanism, and the advantages and drawbacks of BNPL services. We will also examine some risks associated with various airlines and hotels adopting this strategy. Moreover, we will discuss the different BNPL payment service providers worldwide and the airlines that provide the BNPL feature.

How Buy Now Pay Later for Travel Works

With Buy Now Pay Later service, you can get a great deal to finance your purchases of household goods, clothes, gift cards, travel, vacation packages, and more. It allows you to divide the cost of your purchases into equal installments.

The new financial offer of Fly Now Pay Later, especially for travel, is a great deal for easier credit compared to other personal loans or credit cards. Some BNPL providers or third-party partners don't require a hard check of your credit, and they offer you their service without any harm or good to your credit score.

BNPL for travel is the best choice to spend a great time on vacation and pay for the expenses later in multiple payments. But the main question is, how does the Buy Now Pay Later for travel work? Following are the main providers of Buy Now Pay Later:

Airlines and Financing Partners

To provide people with the convenience of traveling to another place has recently started. Airlines provide flight operations through their financing partners, who take charge of the whole process. Airlines such as Hawaiian, Spirit, Alaska, Jet Blue, Southwest, and Frontier provide their BNPL flights.

When you book a flight for your travel, the financing partner of that airline pays for your ticket and other traveling expenses, and you will require to pay it off later in the set payment terms. The interest, additional fees, requirements, and offers depend on the airline or service you pick.

Travel Agencies

Travel Agencies play a vital role in connecting customers with BNPL airlines. Travel agencies like Expedia, Priceline, Kayak, Hotels.com, and CruisesOnly, offer multiple travel options and vacation packages. When you choose an insurer for your travel, they provide you with every possible facility they can offer.

Also, you are responsible for making your payments on time, so you will not be charged with late payment penalties. Travel Agencies will look at your credit score and other factors like financial history, and spending habits to ensure your timely payments. If you are in trouble finding direct BNPL options for travel, you can contact travel agencies.

Cruise Ship Companies

Cruise ship companies offer BNPL service for travel through cruises. Suppose you want to have a travel experience via a cruise. In that case, you can easily contact a major cruise company such as Princes, Carnival, Virgin Voyages, or a financial service provider like Uplift or Affirm.

You can book your BNPL cruise travel online and using the traditional process. Cruise companies offer to travel through cruises and provide vacation packages, including hotel reservations and rental services.

BNPL service for cruises is a new offer that benefits customers who want to travel through the water bodies and not by air. Furthermore, customers can use a finance service like Uplift to book their travel, upgrade their travel options, and select payment term options.

Vacation Rental Companies

With the new financial technology of BNPL service, Buy Now Pay Later providers and payment platforms have launched their vacation rental programs. Travel merchants are now able to attract many customers by booking vacation travel in installments.

Vacation Rental Companies increase their vacation offers on travel days when people move to other places for vacations. With Buy Now Pay Later, customers plan their vacations in affordable payment terms without paying interest.

Hotels

Along with airlines, travel agencies, and vacation rental companies, some hotels are also connected to the BNPL service chain. When you select an airline or finance provider of BNPL service, they offer vacation plans, including hotel reservations. The BNPL option allows customers to enjoy their vacations in affordable hotels.

After booking your BNPL flights or hotels, you can get a new plan for your vacation or trip. BNPL hotels offer customers multiple services such as stays, spas, dining, and shop experiences. Also, you don't need to worry about your reservation and checking, and your loan provider will be responsible for providing the best service according to your vacation plan.

Buy Now Pay Later Pros and Cons for Travel

Buy Now Pay Later has benefits and disadvantages like other credit and personal loans. Look at the pros and cons of BNPL for travel and then decide on your vacation or travel plan with BNPL service.

Pros

Buy Now Pay Later loans for multiple purchases like household products, travel, and shopping are increasing with time. Following are the benefits you can get from a BNPL service for your travel:

Financial Protection

BNPL for travel provides multiple benefits, such as financial protection. Unlike travel credit card benefits, BNPL services don't offer travel benefits. However, BNPL providers offer the Buy Now Pay Later option with financial protection of your credit and payments or installment.

Multiple Payment Options

When selecting a BNPL provider, choose the one with more payment options. More payment methods will offer a better conversion rate for your travel purchases. Customers will be at ease if they have some payment methods at checkout. Although there are a few payment options, such as Uplift, PayPal, and Affirm, with high ratings, you can also try other payment providers at the time of need.

It's a Necessary Expense

Sometimes, we face an emergency and need to travel by plane to reach somewhere or to attend to an urgent situation. In these cases, Buy Now Pay Later for flights is a lifesaver. Also, if your house needs emergency repair, you must stay at a hotel. A BNPL service will be a great option to manage your expenses under your budget.

Interest or Fees is less than other debts

Many Buy Now Pay Later service providers do not charge additional fees or interest. Even if there are interests or fees with a BNPL service for travel, it is lower than many other debt amounts. Several credit loans or personal loans require fixed APRs with high-interest rates. And with late payments, the loan holders are required to pay additional amounts. BNPL service costs you less than other debts.

Cons

Some people find Buy Now Pay Later loans a good way to purchase travel, including flights and hotels. However, the chances of getting into debt after getting the loan are high. Loan payments, interest rates, and late payment fees can affect your budget badly.

Here are some drawbacks to BNPL for travel:

Cannot Travel Immediately

Although you can apply online for BNPL service for travel, the process takes two to three days. BNPL flights and hotels are not a good choice for travelers in a great hurry. If you plan your next trip with BNPL flights, keep a distance between booking your flight and the travel time.

No Travel Benefits

Unlike travel credit cards, BNPL personal loans don't offer travel benefits such as luggage protection, cancellation insurance, delayed baggage protection, and trip delay reimbursement. Although many people don't experience these issues, the possibility of facing any issue is always there.

Fees besides Interest

Though many BNPL providers don't charge interest or additional fees, other BNPL apps may require you to maintain your loan with interest, additional fees, or late payment fees. Compared to credit and personal loans, BNPL loans have high fees depending on the size of your purchase product. So BNPL purchases of travel and hotels may charge you high fees.

No Flexibility with Payments

When you purchase a product or service with the BNPL option, you must follow a repayment schedule that you cannot cancel or change. The repayment schedule remains the same until the payment of the last installment. Also, you can be charged high fees and additional charges for late payments. Moreover, in some cases, you can't make purchases until the full amount is paid if you are charged with a late payment penalty.

Not all Airlines and Hotels accept BNPL

With time, the number of airlines with BNPL financing is increasing. But not all airlines offer BNPL flights or travel. Some airlines, including American Airlines, Alaska, Delta, Lufthansa, Frontier, and United, have started their Buy Now Pay Later flight operations.

Other than flights, when you book a vacation or trip through a BNPL service provider, you have to check whether they offer hotel reservations. You will get enough benefits from the offer if you get Buy Now Pay Later service for travel, flight, and hotel.

Risks to Consider Before Using BNPL for Travel

It's important to consider the financial risks before using any loan, such as a Buy Now Pay Later personal loan. BNPL loans are easy to obtain, so that you can get some fine details about the loan. It would help if you considered some risks before applying for a Buy Now Pay Later loan.

Refunds

It is important to get details about the refund policy of a loan before planning a vacation or trip. Risks like flight cancellation, emergency plan change, or any other factor that can cancel your vacation or travel are always there. So if your loan agreement has a refund policy, you will be at a great loss. If you ever experience any loss without a refund, you should consider travel insurance that can return some loss.

Interest

Some BNPL loan providers for travel do not charge any interest or additional fees if the payments are on time. However, some finance providers have fixed APRs, credit requirements, or interest rates.

Understanding the interest rates, additional charges, and fees a BNPL finance provider or travel company offers is good. If your credit is not good or high, you must consider the BNPL loan providers who don't require a credit check.

Multiple Loans

People who get benefits from a loan may apply for it again if they have taken a loan for any purchases and want to apply for another one. The risk of management will be great. The payments for both loans can be high for you to pay off. It's good to balance your loan payments and budget so that you can manage additional loans.

Late Fees

BNPL loan providers with no interest or additional charges sometimes charge late payment penalties or charges for missed installments. You may get into trouble with late payoff fees if you don't have a good loan history.

Compared to traditional credit or personal loans, Buy Now Pay Later loans charge high late payment fee rates. It's good to find BNPL loan issuers without late fees so that if you miss any payment or installment. You can save your money.

Best Payment Services for BNPL Travel

Although some airlines offer their BNPL travel options directly to their customers without any third-party service provider, many airlines let you book flights now and pay later through payment services, including Affirm, PayPal, AfterPay and Uplift.

Uplift

Uplift offers its finance service to many Book Now Pay Later airlines, travel agencies, and companies. After selecting Uplift for your travel, you can manage your payments on its application or website. Your purchases at Uplift will appear to you in a shopping cart. You can set auto-payments or access the pay monthly option.

PayPal

PayPal is one of the customers' most used payment options for online payments and BNPL purchases. Many travel agencies and airlines permit PayPal as their payment service. You must sign in to your PayPal account and book your trip. Moreover, if your payments are on time, PayPal does not charge any interest or fee.

Affirm

Affirm is another popular payment service that provides loan terms of 36 months. You must confirm the payment terms and interest rates at the time of agreement. If you are living in Canada, USA, or Australia, Affirm needs your phone number.

After booking your Buy Now Pay Later travel, flights, cars, or hotels through Affirm, you can manage your payments via Affirm app. The application has payment options like each month's payment or auto-pay. You can check the list on its website to learn more about the travel partners with Affirm.

Buy Now Pay Later for Hotels

Buy Now Pay Later is called a point-of-sale or POS loan. It means that you are taking a loan and making a purchase simultaneously. After applying for the loan, you pay off your loan amount in weekly or monthly payments or regular installments. If you have spent your savings on the vacation package, travel, or shopping, you can use the book now and pay later for hotel rooms.

With multiple reliable payment services, Buy Now Pay Later for hotels bring customers the opportunity to make reservations without thinking about paying now. BNPL option for hotel reservations provides the ease to reserve hotels, spend vacations and pay for them later. The purpose of BNPL for hotels is to offer customers flexible and affordable payment strategies so that customers can reach out for purchases within their budgets.

How BNPL Hotel Works

To book hotels, choose a website that works as a medium between customers and hotels. If your selected website offers a Buy Now Pay Later service for hotel reservations, you will see the payment provider at the checkout. Major payment options include credit card, debit card, or PayPal.

You will be connected with a third-party payment provider when you avail of the Buy Now Pay Later through the website. You will be asked to create or sign in to your account to take the BNPL loan.

Then, you will sign up and choose a payment plan according to your budget and financial resources. Through BNPL, you will save from making huge upfront payments to hotels. When your vacation or trip begins, you will find the whole process the same as you normally experience. You reach your destination, go through the check-in process and enjoy your break in your hotel room.

Providers of Buy Now Pay Later Hotel

Unlike many BNPL flights, travel, and other purchases, the providers of BNPL hotels are fewer, but they are the best. Some providers are partners and offer their Buy Now Pay Later service to comfort the customer in dividing his payments.

Some rules, regulations, and policies are applicable to all Buy Now Pay Later hotel providers. For example, the cancellation of hotel bookings. The charges will depend on the hotel room's cancellation policy if you want to cancel the hotel reservations. Also, most hotels require customers to have a minimum age of 18 if they want to book a hotel room.

Following are some BNPL hotel providers that offer affordable and flexible payment options:

Expedia

Expedia is the top choice of customers for booking Buy Now Pay Later hotels. It offers a search page where you can find BNPL deals on hotels around the country. Make sure to book your BNPL hotels directly on the Expedia site. Expedia does not charge you any payment until you reach your hotel room.

Expedia and Affirm have a partnership that allows customers to spread their loan amounts into weekly and monthly installments. Affirm offers three to 12 months payment plans so that you can get benefits from their partnership.

Expedia does not have any interest or additional fees for booking BNPL hotels. However, you can be charged with interest according to your credit score. Also, you may be charged a pay APR of 10% to 30% based on your credit and payment performance.

Booking.com

Booking.com is a website that offers BNPL service to customers for booking hotel rooms on their vacations and trips. It offers access to the most luxurious sites and popular hotels all around the world with BNPL service.

Whether planning a family or friends vacation trip or travel for a business meeting, Booking.com provides different hotels and motels accordingly. You visit Booking.com, select your hotel rooms, and select payment methods such as Visa, PayPal, MasterCard, and Diner Club.

Sezzle

Sezzle Travel is a Buy Now Pay Later hotel provider that offers the best hotel rates at affordable prices. You need to make your Sezzle booking in less than 20 days. You can pay to choose a credit card or debit card as your payment method. 

Sezzle offers Buy Now Pay Later with refundable rates and discounted hotel rooms. With Sezzle, you can spread your loan payment in four payments or installments for 6 weeks. Sezzle does not charge any interest or additional fees.

Butter

Butter is another website travelers use to book their flights and hotels for holidays and then pay for them in installments. You can use Butter to find cheap and cost-effective accommodation around major cities and countries worldwide. You can join Butter free through a sign-up, book a trip, travel to your designation, and pay in installments.

They also have an Instagram that can be used to access promotions, offers, and great content to plan your trip wisely. People normally leave reviews regarding their stay, accommodation, flight, and travel, which is a great help as it can help future travelers to consider Butter for their trip.

Some of the perks of choosing Butter include transparent pricing, which means you will not need to pay any hidden fees on top of the compulsory cost of your trip, including taxes. Butter also carries out a soft check instead of a hard inquiry that will not hurt the credit score. People will have an option to pay the cost of their trip in ten installments. However, you will need to pay some amount upfront as security. Lastly, Butter works in most countries and cities, so you will not miss any worthy deals.

Airlines that Offer Buy Now and Pay Later Flights

Following are some of the alternative airlines that offer BNPL flights:

Lufthansa

Lufthansa offers a wide variety of payment options for customers. You can get details about the payment procedure, payment options, and other information on Lufthansa's site. Payment options depend on the country you are living in. Usually, international payment options are PayPal and Uplift. With BNPL flights of Lufthansa, you will get the airline's travel benefits and the monthly payment.

KLM

With KLM, you can avail of the fare option for 72 hours with a non-refundable fee. This option allows you to confirm your travel with a fare you need. Also, KLM offers BNPL flights with PayPal Credit. When you want to book a KLM flight, you need to choose PayPal as your payment method. Then sign in to your PayPal account. Remember, the "Bill Me Later" at the KLM site is a PayPal payment option.

Porter Airlines

Porter Airlines have a flight operation to the US, Caribbean, Mexico, and Canada. The airline is Canadian-based and offers Buy Now Pay for Your Flight Later service. The major finance providers of Porter Airlines are PayPal and Uplift. You can get BNPL flights with Porter Airlines after purchasing tickets from service providers.

Volaris

Volaris is a Mexico Airlines offering BNPL flights with monthly payments or installments. When you book a Volaris flight, you need to choose the payment term for your loan. At the "Passenger & Payment" interface on the airline site, select the "Monthly pay" option. And follow the instructions to proceed further.

The airline offers a few payment options, such as Uplift and PayPal. Whichever payment option you choose, check the details before making any selection. You are required to book flights with Volaris that take more than 36 hours to reach the destination.

Southwest Vacations

Southwest Vacations is one of the best BNPL flight options that offers booking for flights, rental cars, and hotels. Visit the airline's site, and get all the information you want to and need to know. Book your flights, transport resources, and hotel reservations using Uplift. And choose payment options to pay in full or monthly equal payments.

FAQs

Now that you have understood BNPL travel, let us look at some frequently asked questions concerning Buy Now Pay Later for travel.

How are Credit loans and Buy Now, Pay Later loans different?

Credit loans and BNPL loans have many differences as they are used for different purposes and situations. Buy Now Pay Later loan is for emergency usage, to hold on to cash, and to plan vacations in the budget. At the same time, other credit loans are for long-term purposes like businesses, shopping, groceries, credit building, and more.

BNPL loan does not require a hard credit check compared to credit loans which are entirely based on your credit score and credit history. Credit loans offer rewards, miles, or points on fixed purchases, while BNPL loan provides no rewards. The requirements to qualify for a credit loan are unnecessary for a BNPL loan. Also, there is no interest for BNPL loans, but credit loans charge high-interest rates.

Why do People choose to Travel Now and Pay Later?

The major reasons behind BNPL for travel are the benefits people get from the service. They are:

  • Easy application and approval process.
  • Easy to make payments.
  • More flexibility compared to other credit loans.
  • Low or no interest at all.

What happens when someone doesn't pay BNPL?

Although some BNPL providers do not charge interest or additional fees, you will be fine with hefty fees if you miss your installments or don't pay off payments. If the missed payments increase in number, the lender can freeze your account. You will not allow making more purchases, and your debt will increase with time. Moreover, the report of your missed payments is sent to credit bureaus, and your credit score will hurt.

Does BNPL Affect Credit Score?

Some companies and travel agencies do a soft credit check to ensure your payment history. If you pay your installments on time, BNPL does not affect your credit score. Because a report of good payment performance is not sent to credit bureaus. So if you are considering building credit with BNPL, the choice is not worth it. However, your lender will report your missed payments to credit bureaus. More missed payments will result in a bad credit score and payment history.

Conclusion

Buy Now, Pay Later for travel is a great deal to use when you are in an emergency or want to hold your cash as long as possible. However, for every individual, the loan amount, terms, and interest rates vary according to financial conditions and budget plans. However, BNPL offers you multiple perks, including vacation packages, travel, purchases, and hotel reservations. It's good to consider factors like interest rates, late fees, and other requirements before applying for a BNPL loan.

BNPL for travel is offered by several airlines, finance companies, hotels, and cruise ship companies. Consider all the basic checking, and use your leisure time by exploring something new. If you can afford a BNPL loan for your vacation, plan a trip, follow the application process, book a flight and enjoy a good time.

Article written by Robert Ferry
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