Paynow introduces top-up service for Netflix subscriptions

Rufaro Madamombe Avatar
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Paynow has recently introduced top-up services for Netflix subscription in Zimbabwe.

Local banks charge on average $2.50 per online transaction using one’s Visa or Mastercard and they also limit the amount of money a person can transact per month. This means that if you’re someone who has a lot of stuff to pay for, worrying for your Netflix subscription wasn’t even on your mind. Now you can pay for the really important stuff and still be able to subscribe to Netflix through Paynow.

Previously, even if you were to buy the subscription on your own, it would cost you $8 + transaction fees so total would be $10.50 (using our average charges fee). So in three months you use $31.50, now buying from Paynow, you will spend $29 for three months. This is because when you buy the $25 Netflix card which they sell, they will charge you $4 for the service. Regardless of their charge, you will still be spending less than you would so that’s good.

We tried to look for where to find them at a cheaper price but failed. This doesn’t mean that you wouldn’t get them cheaper but you’d need numbers. Even if you wanted to buy the gift cards yourself, you’d be faced with the following problem. Netflix gift cards bought in the US are sold in USD and can only be redeemed by customers in countries where Netflix charges USD. If you are in Canada or Mexico or any other country, online gift card options are not available.

So Paynow is not only benefiting from the service fee they charge you when you buy but they’re probably getting the Netflix cards at a discount price by buying them in bulk. This means they get to sell them for the original price and still make a profit.

It would be interesting to see if entrepreneurs in Zimbabwe will use this opportunity to make a quick buck by buying the Netflix cards from Paynow then resell them in the USA. This is basically externalisation which the government considers illegal so it wouldn’t be a wise thing to do.