Why is Klarna Charging a Service Fee | $2 Fee Explained

Today, I want to dive into something that caught my attention during my recent shopping spree. You know that feeling when you’re about to check out with your Klarna payment option, and suddenly, a $2 service fee pops up?

Yeah, it surprised me too! So, I did some digging to uncover the mystery behind this unexpected charge.

Klarna has recently been making a lot of changes in a bid to become a profitable company. First, it was with changing the way it evaluates your Klarna purchase power, then requiring adjustment in payment plans and now a service fee.

Now, don’t get me wrong—I love the convenience of Klarna. Splitting payments into bite-sized chunks makes it easier on the wallet….albeit temporarily. Accoring to research, 57% of users regretted using BNPL as they spent more than they could afford.

But nothing is more frustrating than that dreaded word ….. fees?

Let me share a little personal experience. I recently bought a stylish jacket using Klarna, and that service fee caught me off guard.

And it seems I am not alone – other users are reporting unexpected service fees when using Klarna for purchases, if you go by the playstore reviews on Klarna app.

Here is just some of the reviews that you see:

“This use to be my fav. go to app when I’m a little low on cash now they are adding a service fee on top of your purchase. I don’t like the new features & won’t be using anymore.”

“Used to love this app. Really usefull and makes bigger purchases more manageable. That said, they just started charging a service fee for using their service and wasn’t aware until I saw it tacked on to my most recent Amazon order. I’ll be paying off my outstanding balance and discontinuing use. If I had gotten notice that a fee was going to be charged, I wouldn’t have been bothered and kept using without a care. I’m sure there’s something in the ToS, but I’m just going to stop using Klarna.”

“The App was good until they took away the good rewards like gift cards from Walmart, Amazon etc. And now they are charging a service fee! I need to find another pay later service.”

So what is this Klarna Service Fee? Why does Klarna Charge a $2 Fee

Klarna has started charging a service fee on 4 bi-weekly payment option for purchases on non-partnered stores. Klarna partner stores do not have service fees. Klarna’s terms of agreement mention the $2 fee as a finance charge that may apply if stores are not bound by a specific agreement.

Klarna’ operating model is that it ties up with merchant partners helping them increase their sales by giving their customer’s the abitlity to split their payments. In other words, Klarna takes on the risk for merchants by paying them upfront for your purchases. They act as the middleman, ensuring you get your goods and the seller receives their hard-earned cash.

As merchants who get the benefit of higher sales, Klarna usually charges them a fixed fee for providing this service. These partner merchants are identified by letter “K” in pink,

But not all merchants are ready to play this, especially the bigger players (the likes of Amazon, Walmart etc) who don’t rely on BNPL as a sales driver. And Klarna has to also ensure their presence at such non-partner stores to be in the game.

So let’s go through the terms posted on their wesbite:

  • Are there fees associated with creating a One-time card?

The payment options on One-time cards include either a flat service fee or APR for longer payment plans. To split your purchase in 4 bi-weekly payments on non-partnered stores, there will be a service fee.

The service fee will be added to the first installment and will be added to your payment plan.

There is no service fee at Klarna partner stores; Klarna partner stores are marked with a pink “K” in the Klarna app.

  • Why is there a service fee?

Klarna charges a service fee when you choose 4 biweekly payments on non-partnered stores. When Klarna partners with a store you can split your purchase for free. Klarna partner stores are marked with a pink “K” in the Klarna app.

  • What happens to the service fee if I return my order?
  1. If you submit a partial return of your order, the fee will be charged in full.
  2. If you submit a full return, and no charge was placed on the One-time card, the fee will be refunded.

Many users are confused about the inconsistency of service fees across different merchants.

Some users have experienced a $2 service fee added to their transactions with stores like Walmart, Home Depot, Amazon, Target etc.

How to Escape the Klarna Service Fees?

Nobody likes the service fee- the easiest way to escape them is not to use Klarna. Ok let’s get to serious options:

  1. Use Klarna only at their partner stores. The partner merchants i.e. one marked with letter “K” on the app. Usually such merchant websites have Klarna as one of the listed payment options.
  2. Consider alternatives to Klarna that don’t require you to pay such fees. While Klarna is undeniably convenient, it’s not the only player in the game-you have options like PayPal, Afterpay, or even the traditional credit card.
  3. Spread the fees with Klarna one time card over multiple purchases. Some users have been able to use the same Klarna one time card again if it has balance funds. So you can generate the card for slightly higher amount to bring down the per transaction cost.
  4. Avoid using Klarna or even other BNPL services for small ticket purchases- it simply isn’t worth it.

Did you know that Klarna boasts over 90 million active users worldwide? That’s quite a fan club!


In conclusion, my fellow shoppers, the service fee charged by Klarna isn’t just a random addition. It’s the cost of the invisible support system that ensures our seamless shopping experiences. Remember, you have options if the fee doesn’t align with your preferences. Explore different payment methods, assess their pros and cons, and make an informed decision.

At the end of the day, we’re all on a quest for the perfect shopping experience, and understanding the inner workings of Klarna’s service fee brings us one step closer. So, happy shopping, my friends, and may your purchases bring you joy without breaking the bank!

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I have a passion for finance and technology. On this blog, I share helpful information on products and services that we use in our daily lives and simplify things I learned the hard way.

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