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8 Dec 2019

Tymit 'buy now, pay later' credit card: can it save you money?

New way to control credit card interest on big and small purchases

Borrowers paying for big-ticket items and everyday purchases on the same credit card could save money with the launch of Tymit.

The new 'revolutionary' credit card lets you set up multiple instalment plans alongside everyday spending, so you can avoid interest on some purchases and manage your borrowing on others.

Which? explains how Tymit works, whether it could save you money and alternatives if you are looking for ways to control your credit card spending and avoid interest.

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How the Tymit credit card works

Tymit will allow you to choose to spread the cost of any individual transaction over three, six, 12 or 24 months in equal instalments at an interest rate of between 12%-22.7%.

Unlike a traditional credit card, interest is calculated and applied to individual instalment plans, rather than the whole balance.

And it's not just single purchases that can be managed in this way. You can bundle purchases, like all the costs associated for a weekend trip to Paris, to form one instalment plan to spread out over time.

Purchases that you do not select to go on an instalment plan will have to be paid in the next month and won't attract any fees or interest.

Tymit is managed through an app which offers real-time spending notifications, spending categorisation and reporting as well as the ability to freeze the card if it is lost or stolen.

Can you save money with Tymit?

Tymit claims this will save borrowers a significant amount of money compared with traditional credit cards.

With Tymit you can separate those everyday transaction that you can afford to pay back each month versus big-ticket items you could use some breathing room on.

You could, for example, make three purchases: a burrito costing £5, a TV costing £500 and a food shop of £120.

If you made these three purchases with a traditional credit card with no 0% introductory offer, you would be charged interest on the whole amount of £625 for as long as it took to pay it off.

But with the Tymit credit card you could choose to spread the cost of the TV over 12 months, but pay off the burrito and food shop costing £125 over three months.

What interest and fees will Tymit charge?

Tymit doesn't charge a membership fee or foreign transaction fees so it's a handy card to take on holiday for unexpected costs that might crop up.

It's not clear whether the card charges for ATM transactions (most credit cards do). We've asked Tymit and will update this article once we know.

However, Tymit will charge interest on the purchases you choose to spread out with an instalment plan of between 12% and 22.7% APR.

The representative APR on the Tymit card is 14.9%. This is the rate at least 51% of customers must get; others may get offered higher rates.

Using this typical rate if you buy something for £100 and choose to pay it in 3 months, you would pay three instalments of £34.13 and spend a total of £2.34 in interest.

How do Tymit's repayments work?

Traditional credit cards usually only requires a minimum repayment of about 1% or £5, whichever is higher, or the option to pay more than the minimum.

You get less flexibility with Tymit - you have to make the instalment payments you've committed to.

Any missed payments could appear on your credit report and affect your ability get other cards or loans.

If you find yourself juggling several different instalment plans it could be a sign that you are struggling with debt. You can get free advice on getting your finances under control from several dedicated debt charities.

Should you try Tymit?

Tymit could give you a new level of control over the credit card purchases you make each month.

However, you can achieve the same thing by using a debit card for everyday spending and only using a credit card for big-ticket items.

And you can avoid paying any interest at all if you take out a 0% purchase credit card.

There are also traditional credit card cards that offer things like rewards, cashback, 0% purchases and 0% balance transfers in one, which could help you get the best of all worlds.

The Curve card is another alternative. It's a card that allows you to link all your debit and credit cards in one place and play around with which one you use to pay for items. One of its most compelling features is the ability to 'go back in time' and pick a different card to pay for a purchase allowing you to use a credit card retrospectively.

If you like the sound of Tymit you can register your interest on the website and be one of the first to try it out. Let us know how you get on if you do.