Openpay is a buy now, pay later service, similar to the likes of Afterpay and Zippay. The difference is that Openpay allow longer terms for repayment compared to Afterpay where the payments are broken into 4 payments.
We’ve run into several problems using the Openpay service, the other issue we had was that Openpay is just not accepted at a lot of places. The best thing going for Openpay right now is that it is accepted at Bunnings.
Where can you use Openpay
Openpay is not everywhere, and not available in the most popular stores. Openpay, at the time of writing, is limited to:
- Trades and Services – mainly local small business and a few real estate agents
- Vet Clinics
- 24 Online clothing stores
- Photography services
- Shaver shop
- Anaconda and other outdoor and sports business
The signup experience
When signing up to Openpay, we downloaded the app from the App Store and created an account. The account creation process is not seamless and requires a lot of information, including drivers license, Medicare, and what you ate for breakfast (so to speak).
During the signup process, the last action of submitting our details froze and refused to continue. I then exited the app and tried again. At this point, I had to create the account from their webpage and not the app. After this was done I was given a username and password.
I logged in and all was good, I logged out and logged back in again and I was told my account was frozen, please call Openpay during business hours of 9 AM to 5 PM Monday – Friday only. I waited till the next morning and called customer service, only to be told that since I had 2 attempts at signing up the account was frozen and now I needed to take a photo of my drivers license and Medicare and upload them too. They had a 3 day turn around on verifying these details.
The buying and checkout experience
While I was on the phone to Openpay customer service, I quizzed them about how I would know what my repayments and first payment would be, say if I picked up a $100 item in Bunnings. I was told that I can choose my repayment plans and know the first payment amount when at the cashier buying the item.
This sounds ludicrous, and I advised customer service right away, that I could not imagine trying to check out choose my repayment options all while I have 7 people behind me wanting to pay and leave Bunnings too.
Well, that’s exactly what happened on Saturday when I went to Bunnings, I wanted to purchase more items but since I did not know how much my first payment and my overall repayments would be I limited myself to a product for $98.
I went to the cashier and I opened the app and clicked on create payment plan, the cashier scanned the code from the phone and I then could see for the first time that my first payment was going to be $20 and repayments were fortnightly. All while I was choosing my payment plan I did have 5 people behind me waiting to check out.
The checkout and pay experience with Openpay is not good. I want to purchase a few more items next week, but I am literally anxious in not knowing what my payment plan looks like before going to the cashier. It’s potential time wasting for the cashier too to have to scan all these items in only for me to say no thanks, the terms don’t suit me.
When you first join you are given a $150 credit limit to use, once you go through the process of buying something and paying it back of course, your limit will start to lift. There is an additional feature that allows you to apply for a one-off extension of credit at particular stores such as Bunnings. We applied for a $500 credit limit at Bunnings and this was granted within seconds.
But we found that after we made our $98 purchase, the credit limit of $500 was removed. It would appear I need to apply for another credit extension each time despite the fact that I only cut into my $150 general limit and not touching the Bunnings extended credit.
Repayments and Repayment Plans
Openpay lacks a lot here other than their go to market strategy of allowing users longer repayment terms. As previously mentioned you do not know what the repayments are going to be, and certainly, do not know how much your first payment will be without selecting all your items and then going through to the cashier.
The process of having the Openpay user select the terms at point of pay is just crazy when it comes to bricks and mortar stores, it shows little consideration for the customer experience and certainly for the other customers in the queue waiting for an Openpay user to finalise the transaction.
Just imagine if we had decided to build a fence, picked up 5 posts, 28 planks of wood, 4 slabs of concrete and screws, and then headed to the cashier only to find the Openpay terms where not what we were hoping, so decided to decline on the transaction. I, as a customer just wasted 1-hour selecting items, I then wasted 15 minutes of the cashiers time, including others waiting to be served all because Openpay cannot tell you what the payment terms might be before even picking up a single item.
Reliability of the App
The Openpay app provides basic functionality and crashes from time to time. Trying to use a feature to show stores near me that accept Openpay causes the app to crash, telling me that Location services are not turned on, yet they are and Uber and other apps work just fine.
Would we recommend using Openpay?
Yes, Openpay is flexible in its terms and you are not forced into the 4 repayments like some other products. We’d like to see Openpay accepted in a lot more locations and we can hope the app gets fixed sometime soon.
Openpay needs to allow the customer to see what terms they might be looking at before proceeding to buy, even if it is introducing a calculator in the app.