With the growth of the payday loan market in the UK Wonga is probably the best known out of all the major players – thanks largely to their television advertising.
In truth Wonga’s television advertising and Viral marketing campaigns are probably the only things that really set them apart from other payday lenders.
If you look at the average payday loan television advert out there by the likes of QuickQuid and PaydayUk, as just two examples, the advertising campaigns tend to be pretty dire, only matched by the likes of those Cash 4 Gold adverts.
Ok, I’m probably being a little unfair to Wonga – there are aspects that do set them apart from other payday loan firms. Let’s take a look at a few:
Wonga are probably one of the only payday lenders that really are up-front about the amount they charge people. It’s fair to say they were ground-breaking in introducing people to their “slide-bar calculator” that effectively tells you how much you will need to pay back if you choose to borrow the amount you specify.
Wonga will only lend smaller amounts up-front – for instance they publicly state that the maximum amount you can borrow (as long as you can repay it) is £400. In comparison some payday loan firms actually state that they lend up to £1,000 – grossly misleading, especially since many lenders will not actually lend this amount the first time round. Wonga is at least transparent in this regard.
Wonga’s interest rates are lower if you borrow a payday loan over a shorter period of time – the lower the interest rate will be. For example, most payday loan companies fix the length of time over a monthly period so you are obliged to repay the loan with the full month’s interest. With Wonga you can actually specify the loan period – pretty flexible if you ask me.
So are Wonga the same as every other payday loan firm? Well – they are still a payday loan company – whatever else they claim to be, however, they do have a number of differences that make them stand out. Would I borrow from Wonga if I needed to? Probably.