Amazon is a brand that has become one of the biggest, if not the biggest online retailer in much of the Western world. In the US, Amazon has become the de facto place for many to buy books and electronics, even gifts and appliances. 2015 was a year where Amazon tried their absolute best to make it practically impossible for someone to not buy something with Amazon. They introduced Amazon Echo, a speaker-come-dogsbody to order stuff from Amazon, we said hello to Dash as well, little buttons you put around the house to instantly order more consumables and it was the same year we saw them experiment with drones. Across the pond, and Amazon is branching out with something a little more pedestrian, monthly repayments.
Amazon UK will now offer those eligible monthly repayments on order over £400 or more. The finance is provided by Hitachi Personal Finance and there is interest that needs to be repaid as well. Amazon’s own page briefly outlines the new scheme as “a programme which offers loans to pay for eligible orders on Amazon.co.uk, which are then repaid in instalments. Amazon acts as a credit intermediary and credit is provided and administered by Hitachi Personal Finance”. I tried this out in the UK and tried to order an Xperia Tablet Z4, an excellent Android tablet we reviewed last summer, which clocks in at a hefty £499. As you can see in the image below, I was offered the ability to pay later. How later is defined as 30-days after the last package in your order has arrived, only then will your first payment be due.
This is certainly going to be an interesting move for the UK market, and one that could have other retailers more than a little worried. People are used to using Amazon, but if they need a piece of electronics now and pay later they often to the likes of Very or finance with PC World and Currys. Now that Amazon can offer repayment schemes on their own, it could push more consumers to simply order what they want off of Amazon, rather than look elsewhere.