BNPL Australia

How much do Australians spend on Buy Now, Pay Later services?

Buy Now, Pay Later has exploded in popularity in recent years, with the likes of Afterpay and Zip becoming retail giants. At least that’s what you might’ve heard.

But how popular really is Buy Now, Pay Later? Who uses it, and how much are they spending? And perhaps most importantly, are they using it responsibly and paying their bills on time?

To find out, we’ve broken down the most important statistics you might want to know about Buy Now, Pay Later in Australia, such as:

  • BNPL spending by gender and age
  • BNPL spending by state
  • How many people use BNPL?
  • Which BNPL provider is the biggest?
  • How many people are charged late fees?

And more. We’ve compiled this information based on Compare the Market’s Bill Shock Tracker survey1, as well as various other sources.


Who uses BNPL more: men or women?

Men or women BNPL spending

According to our data, women are slightly outspending men on BNPL platforms:

Average BNPL spend by age

BNPL is predominantly used by younger generations, with those aged 34 and under spending more on average than all other age groups:

Gen Zs, who sit in the 18-24 age bracket, spend much more on average than any other age group.

Average BNPL spend by state

Which state spends the most on purchases made with BNPL? Looking at our data, it’s NSW shoppers who comfortably spend the most:

Who forgets to make their BNPL payments?

Not paying off BNPL debts on time can lead to late fees and in our findings, Buy Now, Pay Later bills were the fourth most forgotten about bill identified in the Bill Shock Tracker, and ranked higher than credit cards, car insurance and other general bills.

Of the 29% of Australians who had forgotten a bill in a three-month period, 18% said Buy Now, Pay Later debts were one of them.

Who forgets to pay their BNPL bills: men or women?

Men are more forgetful when it comes to remembering BNPL repayments, despite women spending more as shown above:

General Buy Now, Pay Later Australia Statistics

Buy Now, Pay Later Australia statistics

Number of BNPL users in Australia:

  • 1 million total accounts as at June 2019, 3.7 million ‘active’ accounts2
  • 3 million Australians (15.7%) used a BNPL service in the year to June 2021
  • Number of active BNPL users expected to pass 4 million by 20234

Number of transactions:

  • 4 million total transactions occurred in the 12 months to June 2019 (2018-19)2
  • The number of transactions increased from 1.9 million in June 2018 – a 75% increase
  • Total value of transactions was $5.6 billion in 2018-19

Age of BNPL users:

  • 14–34-year-olds account for 55.9% of BNPL users3
  • 25–34-year-olds are 33.5% of all users
  • 65+-year-olds are just 1.8% of the market

BNPL late fee statistics

BNPL late fee statistics

According to an ASIC review of Buy Now, Pay Later arrangements in 2020, in the 2018-19 financial year:

  • 21% of Buy Now Pay Later users missed at least one payment in a 12-month period
  • As many as 15% of transactions incurred a late fee (not all missed payments do)
  • More than 1.1 million transactions incurred multiple missed payment fees (45% of all transactions charged a late fee)

Younger users incur more late fees

In the 2018–19 financial year, it was under-35s who were the most notorious for being charged late fees, while 45–54-year-olds were the best.

How much money do BNPL providers make from late fees?

The revenue gained from missed payment fees seems to be growing. In 2018-19:

  • Missed payment fee revenue for all BNPL providers in ASIC’s review was over $43 million
  • That late fee revenue grew by 38% year-on-year
  • Over the three years to June 2019, missed payment fees represented up to 15% of total revenue.

The overall number of missed payment fees however, seems to be going down. In the six months from January 2020 to June 2020, the percentage of charged late fee transactions fell from more than 10% to 2.40%.

This trend also appears in Afterpay’s 2021 annual report5:

  • Late fees increased from $68.8 million in 2020 to $87.3 million in 2021
  • However, late fees as a share of total income dropped from 13.7% to 9.6%
  • 98% of purchases incurred no late fees

Which BNPL provider is the biggest? BNPL providers by customer numbers

New Buy Now, Pay Later providers are seemingly popping up every day, and there’s now enough to make a top 10 for the biggest BNPL platforms by the number of customers they have.

We combed through various financial reports to find the 10 with the most active customers.*

*An active customer is defined as making a transaction within a 12-month period. According to the Reserve Bank, only about 3% of those make a transaction at least once per week.


Image via Shutterstock

  1. Compare the Market Bill Shock Tracker: August 2021*
  2. Australian Securities and Investments Commission, November 2020. ‘Buy now pay later: An industry update’.
  3. Roy Morgan, 10 August 2021. ‘Roy Morgan Digital Payments Report.’
  4. Worldpay from FIS, ‘Global Payments Report 2020’
  5. Afterpay, 25 August 2021. Afterpay FY21 Results Presentation.
  6. Zip, 25 August 2021. ‘FY21 Results – Transformational Year as Zip Goes Global’.
  7. Humm Group, 19 August 2021. ‘FY21 Results Announcement’.
  8. Klarna, 25 February 2021. Klarna Q1-Q4 2020 Financial Report.
  9. Openpay, 26 August 2021. ‘FY21 full-year results’.
  10. Latitude, 23 August 2021. Latitude 1H21 Results.
  11. Laybuy, 28 July 2021. Laybuy Q1 FY22 Results Presentation.
  12. ‘For Investors’.
  13. Commonwealth Bank, 18 August 2021. ‘CommBank’s StepPay available now’.
  14. Brighte, ‘Our Story’.

*Compare the Market commissioned PureProfile to survey 1,501 Australian adults in September 2021. Responses required a minimum of 30 responses to be included in results.