English club meeting #4 notes: Online shopping addiction and Buy-Now-Pay-Later
Lee Wenyong
Lee Wenyong


  • Công nghệ và ảnh hưởng đến xã hội
  • Mua sắm và chủ nghĩa tiêu thụ
  • Luyện Speaking tại nhà
  • Kỹ năng Writing IELTS Task 2
  • Luyện Speaking IELTS Part 2
  • Luyện Speaking IELTS Part 3

Picture description: 

A person, working from home, where home is a shopping bag, is depicted using a sleek, orange laptop. 

This person is holding a credit card, suggesting they are making an online purchase. 

Surrounding the laptop are purple shopping bags, implying a successful shopping spree.

Symbolically, the picture captures the essence of modern consumerism and the growing trend of online shopping, especially prevalent among those working from home. 

The purple shopping bags signify indulgence in the digital age. 

The use of a credit card emphasises the seamless and impulsive nature of online transactions.


What are the signs of online shopping addiction, and how might it be addressed?

Signs of Online Shopping Addiction:

Excessive Time Spent Browsing: 

Spending an inordinate amount of time online browsing for goods, and neglecting family or work obligations.

Increased Spending: 

An uptick in expenditure, often on non-essential items, is a common sign. The addict may experience financial strain as they accumulate products they do not need. 

Emotional Shopping: 

Shopping becomes an emotional response to stress, sadness, or even boredom. Individuals turn to online shopping for emotional relief.

Concealment of Purchases: 

Those addicted might hide their shopping habits or lie about their purchases and spending. This secrecy is due to the fear of being judged.

Feelings of Regret Post-Purchase: 

Post-purchase regret is frequent as the initial rush of making a purchase wears off, though this rarely deters future purchases.

Strategies to Address Online Shopping Addiction:

Setting Spending Limits: 

Implementing a budget for online purchases can help control spending. Tools or apps that track spending can be effective. 

Time Management Techniques: 

Allocating specific times for online shopping and sticking to this schedule can prevent constant browsing.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT): 

This psychological treatment helps individuals understand the emotions driving their shopping habits and develop healthier responses to stress or boredom.

Use of Website Blockers: 

Employing software to limit access to shopping websites can help reduce temptation.

Joining Support Groups: 

Engaging with others facing similar challenges can provide emotional support and practical tips for managing shopping addiction.


Is the increasing popularity of buy-now-pay-later schemes a positive or negative development for consumers?

Arguments Supporting the Popularity of Buy-Now-Pay-Later Schemes

Increased Accessibility to Goods: 

Easier for consumers to access goods they need but cannot afford upfront.

Financial Flexibility: 

Consumers manage cash flow better by spreading payments over time.

Boosts Consumer Spending: 

Increased spending contributes to economic growth, stimulating economic activity. 

No Interest Charges: 

Many BNPL plans offer zero interest if payments are made on time, which can be less costly than using credit cards with high interest rates.

Ease of Use: 

The simplicity and convenience of signing up for BNPL schemes make them highly accessible.

Arguments Against the Popularity of Buy-Now-Pay-Later Schemes

Encourages Overspending: 

Minimising the immediate financial impact may lead consumers to buy more than they can afford, leading to debt accumulation. 

Debt Accumulation: 

Debts from multiple BNPL purchases can accumulate quickly, overwhelming consumers.

Potential for Late Fees and Interest: 

Late fees and interest charges are at rates higher than those of traditional credit sources.

Impact on Credit Score: 

Missed payments on BNPL schemes can affect a consumer’s credit score negatively.

Refund hassles

Refunding products purchased through BNPL can be cumbersome and time-consuming.