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Klarna Card review: Is it a credit card?

Here's what we know so far about the card launched by the buy now, pay later giant.

Buy now, pay later (BNPL) behemoth Klarna has launched a physical Visa card that allows you to pay for goods 30 days later. The card is already popular in Germany and Sweden, and now it’s arrived in the UK, there’s already a long waitlist to get it.

Klarna already offers 3 ways to delay payment, but none has involved a physical card until now.

Who is Klarna?

Klarna is a BNPL platform founded in 2005 in Stockholm, Sweden. The brand, known for its “smooooth” adverts, offers 3 options for paying later. The first allows you to pay up to 30 days later. The second lets you pay in 3 interest-free instalments, with the first made at the checkout, and the others taken 30 days and 60 days later.

The final option is longer-term financing for big-ticket items, which is a credit deal (representative APR 18.9% variable) regulated by the watchdog, the Financial Conduct Authority, and can involve a “hard” credit check, which would appear on your credit report. More details in our full review of Klarna.

What is the Klarna Card?

The Klarna Card is essentially the “Pay in 30” deal but on a card. When you use the card, you can pay for your goods up to 30 days after the transaction, interest-free. There are no late payment fees, either. Klarna has said more payment features will be added to the card.

Although the new Klarna Card sounds similar to a standard credit card, it isn’t a credit card, as you must repay the balance in full within 30 days (although Klarna will allow an extension of up to 10 days) and there’s no interest to pay or late payment fees.

Importantly, it isn’t regulated by the financial watchdog and doesn’t offer the same protection as a credit card if things go wrong with a purchase.

How does the Klarna Card work?

You can apply for the physical card that links with an existing bank account. You use the card as normal (where Visa is accepted) by tapping or inserting the card at checkout. You can add the Klarna card to your Apple Wallet or Google Pay and use it where you can pay via a smartphone or smartwatch.

Once you’ve made a purchase, you have have 30 days to pay for it but will also have the option to pay early or extend the due date (by up to 10 days) if you need more time.

You can set up notifications in the app where you will be notified every time you make a purchase or when a payment is due.

What happens if I miss a payment?

If you can’t make a payment within 30 days, Klarna offers a fee-free extension of up to 10 days. Contact Klarna to organise another way to repay if you are not eligible for this service.

If you consistently miss payments, you won’t be able to use Klarna’s services and Klarna may use debt collectors to recover the debt, which may end up affecting your credit score. As of Spring 2022, all 3 CRAs will start showing BNPL data on credit reports and as a result, payments made on time may help build your credit score.

  • Warning: Late repayments can cause you serious money problems. For help, contact the government’s free money advice website, MoneyHelper.

What are the pros and cons of the Klarna Card?

Pros

  • 0% interest on purchases up to 30 days
  • You can shop anywhere Visa is accepted
  • No account fees or foreign transaction fees
  • Pick your card design from 2 options
  • Add your Klarna card to the Apple Wallet or Google Pay

Cons

  • Easy spending – could tempt you to spend more than you have
  • Klarna Card is not regulated by the FCA and you can’t use the Financial Ombudsman if you have a complaint about it
  • Not suitable for those looking to build up their credit score
  • No section 75 protection on your spending over £100
  • Credit limits are lower than limits on credit cards

Looking for a new credit card?

See if you’ll be accepted for a range of cards before applying, without harming your credit score.

How do I apply for a Klarna card?

You can apply for the Klarna Card through the Klarna website or in the Klarna app (available on IOS and Android). To Apply for the Klarna card, you must reach the eligibility requirements. Once your application has been approved, you will receive your Klarna card within 5-7 working days.

Please note, there are currently 400,000 people in the UK on the waitlist and the rollout of the Klarna Card is being done gradually, so eligible customers will receive the card in several months.

What are the eligibility requirements for a Klarna card?

  • Be at least aged 18
  • Be a UK resident
  • Have a positive credit history
  • Have paid off at least one purchase through Klarna on time

Customer reviews for the Klarna card

Since Klarna launched its BNPL services in the UK in 2016, it has become the most popular service provider of its kind. Klarna currently has a TrustPilot rating of 4.5 out of 5, based on 20,607 reviews (last updated 26 January 2022). As the Klarna card has only just been announced, there are currently no specific reviews for that service.

Some Klarna customers who use the traditional BNPL services have described the brand as “efficient and helpful” or has “excellent service”.

Common themes among comments from the 10% of customers who rated Klarna 1 out of 5 stars include “payment declines” and “poor customer service”.

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