Skip to content
RATING
Review

This Week in Credit Card News: September 10–16

Published Sep 16, 20213 min read

Advertiser Disclosure

Credit Card Insider is an independent, advertising supported website. Credit Card Insider receives compensation from some credit card issuers as advertisers. Advertiser relationships do not affect card ratings or our Editor’s Best Card Picks. Credit Card Insider has not reviewed all available credit card offers in the marketplace. Content is not provided or commissioned by any credit card issuers. Reasonable efforts are made to maintain accurate information, though all credit card information is presented without warranty. When you click on any ‘Apply Now’ button, the most up-to-date terms and conditions, rates, and fee information will be presented by the issuer. Credit Card Insider has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Credit Card Insider and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. A list of these issuers can be found on our Editorial Guidelines.

At a glance

Activate 5% cash back quarterly reward credit cards for Q4 2021; American Express offers 6 months of Audible Plus for free; Buy Now Pay Later: A worthy competitor to credit cards?

Credit Card Insider receives compensation from advertisers whose products may be mentioned on this page. Advertiser relationships do not affect card evaluations. Advertising partners do not edit or endorse our editorial content. Content is accurate to the best of our knowledge when it's published. Learn more in our Editorial Guidelines.

The information related to Chase Freedom Flex℠ has been collected by Credit Card Insider and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product.

Activate 5% Cash Back Quarterly Reward Credit Cards for Q4 2021

American Express Offers 6 Months of Audible Plus for Free

  • American Express is providing a six-month free trial of Audible Plus. To be eligible, you must:
    • Have a U.S. American Express card
    • Be located in the U.S.
    • Be a new Audible Plus subscriber
  • Offer expires February 28, 2022.
  • Audible Plus provides access to a large collection of audiobooks, podcasts, and other content, but it doesn’t include any credits to purchase titles.
  • If you don’t cancel the free trial, your account will auto-renew at the current rate after six months.
  • See American Express consumer cards and business cards.

Buy Now Pay Later: A Worthy Competitor to Credit Cards?

  • Buy Now Pay Later, or BNPL, refers to no-fee installment plans used by retailers to offer short-term financing to customers. The most interested customers tend to be those who can’t qualify for credit cards (or who’ve maxed out their cards). BNPL plans are typically seen as easier to understand than credit cards.
  • Major BNPL companies operating in the U.S. include Klarna, Affirm, and Afterpay.  You’ve probably seen BNPL offers on retailer sites: $119.99, or 4 interest-free payments of $29.99.
  • Installment plans like these have been around for a long time, like at furniture stores, but BNPL is gaining steam as an easy and convenient financing method — an expensive item is easier to afford in several installments, and with no credit check (or just a soft inquiry), there are few barriers. C+R Research found that 51% of consumers used BNPL during the pandemic.
  • A BNPL plan typically costs more than a credit card transaction for the retailer, but more and more companies are using it to gain new customers who otherwise wouldn’t make a purchase. Shoppers spend more when BNPL through Klarna is an option, according to Macy’s CEO Jeff Gennette, and it’s attractive to younger customers.
  • Now, some major credit card issuers and related companies are making their own forays into BNPL:
    • American Express, Chase, and Citi have installment plan options: Amex’s Pay It Plan It, My Chase Plan, and Citi Flex Plan. Chase hinted at more BNPL plans in the future.
    • U.S. Bank is testing BNPL and has plans to pursue it.
    • Capital One has plans to test BNPL this year with a select set of retailers.
    • Wells Fargo and Bank of America are looking into adding installment options to their credit cards.
    • Synchrony, the largest issuer of private-label retailer cards (and therefore a prime target of BNPL), is releasing an installment plan in October.
    • Visa began a BNPL pilot program in 2020, offering installment plans with some companies.
    • PayPal is buying Japanese BNPL startup Paidy (PayPal already offers a BNPL plan — Pay in 4).
    • Amazon will be partnering with Affirm, while it considers replacing Chase as issuer for its consumer reward cards (Walmart is already an Affirm partner).
  • Sources: MarketWatch; American Banker (1); American Banker (2); PayPal Newsroom; Visa; Investor’s Business Daily; Reuters
Was this helpful?
Written by

Brendan Harkness

Brendan has been writing about personal finance for over eight years, and is now taking on the challenge of bringing high-quality credit education to the masses. He makes sure that Credit Card Insider is covering the most important credit topics transparently and precisely, and that we have up-to-date reviews of credit cards so you can find cards that are right for you.

Do you have a correction, tip, or suggestion for a new post? Contact us here.

The responses below are not provided or commissioned by bank advertisers. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by bank advertisers. It is not the bank advertisers' responsibility to ensure all posts are accurate and/or questions are answered.

Scroll to top