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What Filipinos prefer for their ‘buy now, pay later’ shopping spree

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By Alithea De Jesus

With business back and everyone looks forward to preparing their Christmas shopping list, it is interesting to note what Filipino consumers are taking into consideration when planning to buy something.

UnaCash, a financial app reveals that Filipinos mainly purchase electronics and household appliances with the growing payment option.

Thirty six percent, or least one out of three Filipinos using ‘buy now, pay later’ (BNPL) services prefer smaller purchases of up to PHP 5,000, a new survey from financial app UnaCash has revealed.

While 26 percent say their average purchase amount using BNPL ranges from PHP 5,001 to PHP 10,000 whilst 19% answered PHP 10,001 to 20,000.

An average BNPL purchase is about 42% of respondents’ average monthly income, 14% the most typical. The arithmetic mean size of a BNPL check is PHP 13,500 (median – PHP 7,700, mode – PHP 3,900). Meanwhile, the declared arithmetic mean monthly income of respondents is PHP 32,000 (median – PHP 28,900, mode – PHP 25,600).

The arithmetic mean age of the respondents is 36.6 years (median – 36.9, mode – 35). This is slightly higher than the arithmetic mean age of the employed population across the country as of July 2022 – 31.5 years (median – 28.9, mode – 25.7). In general, however, it corresponds to the objective picture, adjusted for a higher level of material security that allows older clients to actively use modern fintech solutions.

BNPL sees most demand in purchasing durable goods. Through this payment option, consumers mainly purchase electronics and household appliances (39%) and household and interior items (21%), food (15%), medicines and medical services (7%), cosmetics and perfumes (6 %), travel vouchers (5%), goods for hobbies and entertainment (4%). 

BNPL is lenient when it comes to official declaration of income and employment. Although 87% are contract workers, 12% of respondents are self-employed.

96% of respondents do their online shopping mainly through a smartphone, whilst the remaining 4% use other gadgets. This is not surprising as the smartphone is steadily becoming an important universal financial tool.

Convenience remains the determining factor, with integrated BNPL services in online stores seeing the most demand as a payment option with installments. 61% of consumers choose to use it in need of extra money. Another 20% borrow from friends/relatives, whilst 14% pay with a credit card. 

The amount borrowed in installments is offset by the frequency of purchases, with 48% of respondents using BNPL services at least once a month.

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