Food and Drink

You Can Buy-Now-Pay-Later At Restaurants With This New App

Would you use it?

Australian-founded company ‘payo’ has launched in Australia, offering a buy now, pay later experience you’d expect at most retail outlets—but at restaurants.

Yep, that’s right, you can buy-now-pay-later your dining experiences. The inspiration behind payo is to encourage consumers to dine out and tick off their restaurant-wishlist without suffering the consequences straight away.

“With a background in food technology and hospitality, my co-founders and I have seen firsthand the challenges the industry has faced with getting people through the door and making enough money to cover small margins, especially throughout the pandemic,” CEO and co-founder of payo Taf Chiwanza tells Thrillist Australia.

CEO and co-founder of payo, Taf Chiwanza.

“We were inspired by the buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) method that has seen a huge growth in retail over the last few years, specifically fuelled by millennials and the growth of the QR code in hospitality venues.”

“Over the past year, there have been countless lockdowns, restaurant closures and a drop in consumer discretionary spending, so we wanted to introduce a new way to pay for dining out and support the hospitality industry in a time when they need it the most.”

We all know that eating out at restaurants can be expensive, especially if you’re going for a fine dining or immersive experience. But what if you could lay-by these costs?

Payo encourages consumers to dine out, with the ability to split the bill into four equal, interest-free payments—an almost identical model to leading BNPL app; Afterpay.

“We hope that payo allows people to have the experience they’re craving,” says Chiwanza.

“Money affects what we order in restaurants. We might go for the house wine instead of a Bordeaux, or a couple of dishes, when we’d really love the degustation.

“Our goal is to onboard premium venues, so that all people can enjoy special dining experiences from time to time, and allow people to visit a restaurant that they may not usually be able to afford in one go.”

With a line-up of 500 restaurants, cafes and bars that have already partnered with payo, diners can search, book and pay at the likes of Sydney’s Butter, Tokki and Khoi, as well as Melbourne staples Morris Jones, Asian Beer Cafe and Bomba Bar.

That’s not all—payo users will also be rewarded for dining at selected venues, with exclusive and limited-time offers.

Not only does payo act as a makeshift credit card, the app also allows diners to discover places to eat, filtered by location, cuisine and current offers. You can contact restaurants via payo, to book a table or ask any questions regarding the menu, as well as use the app to track your spending.

Having already seen success during its soft open in Brisbane, venues that have partnered with payo, with restaurants reporting positive results.

Brisbane seafood restaurant St James Crabhouse, have shared that their average order value for payo users is 60% higher than average. The ability to pay later and in instalments takes away that dread of spending a chunk of money at once, and therefore allows people to feel more comfortable spending more.

While this is a fantastic initiative for the hospitality industry, which need as much support as possible moving forward in a post-pandemic world, we all know the danger of buy-now-pay-later.

For those of us that have taken the pandemic as an opportunity to save money, this type of spending could be seen as a tempting but dangerous endeavour; paying for something after you’ve consumed it.

We asked members of our team if they would use a BNPL app for expensive dinners or nights out.

“I’d definitely be tempted when actually at the restaurant and the reality of a big bill kicks in… I think I’d always rather pay later than in the moment,” one team member confessed.

“If you’re going out with friends and you want to split the bill, this could be a great way to only have to pay your portion straight up,” another team member mused.

“Then by the time your mates transfer you, you could just pay it off on payo.”

Other team members were concerned about getting over-confident with spending at restaurants.

“I feel like it would encourage me to buy something that I can’t afford, which I wouldn’t want to get into the habit of doing.”

They all have a point, and it’s definitely important to be self-aware when you’re going on any type of payment plan. You have to be sure you can pay it back in time, or it can become a burden rather than a helpful tool.

We think that anything to support the hospitality industry has positives. With so many restaurants and new businesses opening, it’s a great opportunity to show our support and not feel overwhelmed by the looming bill.

However, it’s also important not to bite off more than you can chew. Choose your restaurants carefully and keep up to date with your spending. You can even track your spending on payo, making sure that you don’t go over your budget.

Download payo from the app store today.

For more information, head to the payo website.

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Food and Drink

Red Rooster Is Serving Free Chicken and Piping Hot Cash This Christmas in July

Get your early dose of festive cheer.

Red Rooster Christmas in July
Instagram / @redrooster_au

The cold weather in most parts of Australia coinciding with EOFY celebrations is the closest thing that we’ll get to snowy Christmas vibes. And if you’re in dire need of some festive cheer after the first six months of 2023, grab your ugly sweater and head to your nearest Red Rooster for Xmas in July deals.

From June 29 – July 31, 2023, Red Rooster is serving up free food items, a chance to win $10,000 or one of 10 merch packs valued at $400 and other fun prizes. All you have to do is sign up as a Red Royalty member and spend $5 on at a location near you or online.

Each week there’ll be new delicious deals and prizes to win. The week one deals have already dropped and they’re looking pretty tasty. You can get access to them via your Red Royalty account. The more you purchase, the more chances you have to win.

Spoiler alert: you can get 10 chicken nuggets for free, right now. Brb running to Red Rooster.

Terms and conditions apply. Visit Red Rooster’s Christmas in July to see all the deals.

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