Misleading 'buy now, pay later' adverts can confuse consumers

Published  19 August 2022
   1 min read

Commenting on the Financial Conduct Authority’s warning to ‘buy now, pay later’ (BNPL) firms, that their adverts must not be misleading, Sarah Pennells, consumer finance specialist at Royal London says:

“If buy now, pay later adverts are misleading, it can be impossible for people to work out what they’re agreeing to, especially when the check-out process for many of these deals is so streamlined.

“While some people manage to use buy now, pay later effectively, others – especially consumers who are vulnerable – can end up borrowing more than they can afford or spending more than they planned.

“Some of the biggest players in the BNPL market changed their contracts earlier in the year as a result of intervention by the Financial Conduct Authority, but it’s clear there’s more to do across the industry as a whole to make sure people are protected, especially during a cost of living crisis.”


The government announced plans in June to regulate interest-free buy now, pay later deals, which will give consumers much needed protection. For example, the regulations require companies offering such deals to carry out affordability checks so people don’t take on borrowing they can’t afford.

For further information please contact:

Royal London Press Office

Notes to Editors

Cost of living support from Royal London

Take a look at our range of guides, articles and practical support. They're designed to help you manage the cost of living and make you feel a little more in control. 

Visit our cost of living hub

About Royal London

Royal London is the largest mutual life, pensions and investment company in the UK, with assets under management of £147 billion, 8.7 million policies in force and 4,232 employees. Figures quoted are as at 31 December 2022. 

Learn more at royallondon.com