New Zealand's Hell Pizza offering new "pay after you die" scheme

New Zealand-based Hell Pizza recently announced, "AfterLife Pay," which will allow a lucky 666 New Zealanders and another 666 Australians to order and eat pizza now, but not pay for it until after they die. Hell Pizza describes the new way to pay:

AfterLife Pay is a light-hearted campaign that reinforces HELL's stance on buy now pay later schemes – you can have your pizza and eat it too without any pesky late fees or penalties.

Their website goes on to explain the motivation behind the campaign:

As the heat turns up on 'buy now pay later' schemes trapping a growing number of Kiwis in spirals of debt, we're launching AfterLife Pay, where customers don't have to pay for their pizza until they're dead, with no late fees or penalties.

Those chosen will be invited to sign a real amendment to their wills, allowing the cost of their pizza to be collected upon death. No interest or fees will apply, and the agreement is legally binding.

AfterLife Pay came about after we were approached by buy now pay later (BNPL) providers who wanted HELL to offer the service to their customers

"We're seeing a growing number of people using the schemes to buy essential items like food, and we think it's taking it a step too far when you've got quick service restaurants like ours being asked to offer BNPL for what is considered a treat — especially when you consider people are falling behind in their payments and 10.5 per cent of loans in NZ are in arrears," Ben Cumming, CEO of HELL, says.

"An investigation from Consumer NZ describes the schemes as 'addictive' and says being approved is easier than getting a credit card – when you add in the late fees and penalties, people can get into debt fast. We don't think people should do this for their pizza – we would prefer they purchase HELL within their financial means".

NewsHub New Zealand provides more context for this satiric (yet real) campaign, explaining how rising costs of living are negatively affecting many New Zealanders:

It comes as New Zealanders battle the ongoing cost of living crisis, with food prices 12.5 percent higher in April this year compared to 2022. The surging costs reflected higher prices for fruit and vegetables, eggs and potato chips, according to Stats New Zealand.

This increase was the largest since September 1987, which included the introduction of GST in 1986.

Fruit and vegetable prices surged 22.5 percent year-on-year and grocery prices were up 14 percent.

The skyrocketing prices have seen many Kiwis turn to BNPL schemes to afford the basics. BNPL companies typically offer on-the-spot, interest-free short-term loans with minimal credit checks that spread payments over weeks or months and are largely used by cash-strapped people taking debt, sometimes more than they can afford.

Just over 25 percent of New Zealanders had a BNPL account, a figure that had remained consistent over the last 18 months, according to Consumer NZ. 

Twenty percent of BNPL users had also accumulated debt from essentials such as groceries, bills and fuel, while 35 percent paid for services with a credit card, according to the stats from Consumer NZ. 

You can apply here.