Results of a survey commissioned by paytech firm Opy suggest BNPL could help lower the fears consumers have about some major medical expenses. The survey of 1,000 Americans focused on BNPL as an alternative payment method for dental care and veterinarian costs.
According to the survey findings, 69% of Americans worry about future dental costs, while two-thirds of U.S pet owners worry about future veterinarian costs. More than seven in ten (71%) said they would regularly use BNPL over traditional payment methods, such as credit card, debit, or cash when visiting the dentist. The trend was even higher for pet owners, as 86% stated they too would opt for BNPL over traditional payment methods, Opy discovered.
While two-thirds of dental patients were knowledgeable about BNPL as an alternative payment method, only 49% have used loan financing for dental visits. Additionally, 77% of pet owners reported they were familiar with BNPL, but only 56% have used the BNPL as a means for managing and paying for veterinarian expenses. The disconnect could indicate not enough dental providers nor veterinarians offer many options for U.S consumers to cover costs, such as installment loan financing.
“The numbers don’t lie,” says Brian Shniderman, U.S. CEO and global chief strategy officer at Opy USA. “Americans are longing for the ability to choose BNPL when making a more significant purchase, such as when visiting the dentist or seeking veterinary care for their pets. In addition, dental patients and pet owners who have greater access to alternative payment methods will seek more consistent visits and treatments, with less worry and anxiety about covering the related expense of doing so. I’m proud to represent a brand that is working to help change lives by offering a fair, friendly way to finance people and pet care, especially when it’s a big bill that’s hard to pay off in a month or two.”
Additional findings from the survey indicate that the COVID-19 pandemic influenced Americans’ opinions on BNPL, as two-thirds of those surveyed who frequently visit the dentist reported they are more interested in utilizing BNPL now than before the pandemic, while three in four pet owners reported the same sentiment. In addition, millennials cover the vast majority, at 75%, whose interest in BNPL options has increased the most.
“Americans have spoken, and the solution is easy; dental and veterinarian practices need to incorporate installment loan financing as a payments option,” added Mike Kimbell, SVP and head of U.S. healthcare at Opy. “Quality pet and dental care is only the beginning. Providing a financial offering such as Opy will ensure healthcare providers can maintain an economically sustainable practice and maintain customer loyalty.”
The bulk of the respondents indicated that payment flexibility is the most desirable feature of BNPL, with 43% of dental patients and 43% of pet owners reporting their preference.
“Healthcare, for both dentists and veterinarians, is the perfect market to offer closed-end installment loan financing. Opy’s unique, flat-fee product provides a seamless payment experience, helping dental patients and pet owners spread out payments over longer terms, with higher costs, for the purchases that matter most in life,” Shniderman concluded.