Walmart has long been synonymous with the go-to for groceries, hardware, and almost everything between. Consumers pop down to Walmart for their weekly grocery run and when they’ve forgotten something vital 5 minutes before they need it.
One of Walmart’s staples has been their layaway program which has helped customers around the holiday season. Through the COVID-19 era, spending habits have changed and many stores have had to reevaluate some aspects of their business.
Does Walmart Have Layaway In 2021?
Walmart no longer has a layaway program. In the past, Walmart has supported a holiday layaway program. However, this year the company has decided to stop the program and switch to a different program partnered with Affirm.
This change has come along with a wave of other changes from the supercenter retailer. Along with paying 100% tuition through its Live Better U (LBU), Walmart has come forward with other plans for embracing the future of commerce.
One of these steps, a couple of years in the making, was getting rid of the layaway services many customers found helpful around the holidays.
Did Walmart Ever Have Layaway Before?
Walmart did have a popular layaway program for several years before 2020. This layaway program was marketed towards holiday shopping and ran from mid-August to mid-December.
Customers took advantage of getting their holiday shopping done while also having a convenient place to hide gifts. Also, many consumers enjoyed that they were able to complete their seasonal shopping while remaining within their budget.
Last year, Walmart began phasing out the layaway program. The company only offered layaway to select jewelry purchases through the normal holiday period.
This year, the retailer has announced they are doing away with layaway completely in exchange for a different service.
Why Did Walmart Stop Layaway?
Walmart decided to do away with their layaway option due to a few factors. A Walmart spokesperson said that the company “has learned a lot about customer needs” in the past year and that “shopping habits have changed.”
With more and more people relying on credit, in terms of shopping, more and more retailers are making similar switches away from layaway services. With a credit-forward option like “Buy Now Pay Later”, customers can get their products sooner rather than later.
Options like store-specific credit cards or “Buy Now Pay Later” services could be popping up more and more in the future.
Does Walmart Have Plans for Layaway in the Future?
Currently, Walmart has no plans for a layaway service in the future. The retailer plans to completely switch to the new partnered program with Affirm.
Many competitors are making a similar switch away from layaway. Consumers want their products quicker and without the hassle of waiting.
Walmart does have a few alternative options now that they have done away with layaway.
What Other Alternative Financing Options Does Walmart Offer?
Walmart does offer a couple of different alternative financing options for its customers.
There is a Capital One Walmart Rewards card that allows cardholders to earn 5% cashback on Walmart.com. Customers with this card can also earn 2% cash back in Walmart stores and fuel stations as well as 1% cashback everywhere else Mastercard is accepted.
Also, there is a Walmart MoneyCard for which cardholders can earn 3% cashback at Walmart.com, 2% cashback at Walmart fuel stations, and 1% cash back at Walmart stores. Participating members can set up Direct Deposit with this card and get paid early with overdraft protection and no monthly fees.
However, with these two alternative financing options, some customers are still looking for better solutions to their budgetary needs.
Does Walmart Do Buy Now Pay Later Instead of Layaway?
Walmart is completely switching from its layaway program to a new “Buy Now Pay Later” program with Affirm. This new program seems promising and offers some advantages compared to the old layaway option.
Customers will be able to buy their items right away and set up a payment plan through Affirm. The payment options range from 3 to 24 months depending on how much you spend. Affirm even has an app to make payments easier.
However, purchases are subject to 10-30% APR and there is also a list of ineligible categories on the Walmart website.
If a layaway program is the way you want to carry on shopping, there are a few options left.
What Other Stores Offer Layaway?
There are still some stores that offer layaway and maybe a better fit for you.
Burlington Coat Factory, and its subsidiary Baby Depot, offer a layaway program. You can check to see participating locations but the list is quite lengthy. Their 30-day in-store program requires a $5 service fee and a $10 cancellation.
Another option for layaway is Kmart and Sears. They offer similar products (except groceries) and because they have the same parent company, their layaway policies are identical. They offer an online and in-store option with a $10 deposit followed by payments every two weeks.
Although Walmart is doing away with their layaway, you can still find some layaway options elsewhere or buy into the new “Buy Now Pay Later” program.
Is There Layaway at Walmart?
Unfortunately, Walmart has decided to end its popular layaway program. Instead, they are initiating a “Buy Now Pay Later” program with Affirm. This program will be available year-round unlike the layaway program, which was specifically for the holiday season and ran from mid-August to mid-December.
Customer response will be the deciding factor to see whether the “Buy Now Pay Later” service takes off or not. In this new spending era, consumers are relying more heavily on credit. This new program at Walmart with Affirm might be the way of the future.