9 Best Cash Advance Apps to Cover You Until Payday

Cash advance apps can save you a lot of trouble should you find yourself out of money before your next paycheck arrives.

By getting a cash advance on your paycheck, you can avoid paying late fees from missed payments when your bank balance is too low.

When it comes to choosing a cash advance app, there are many options to choose from. Each app tends to shine in one particular area.

Before choosing an app, take the time to understand your requirements and what you need the most to ensure you get the best deal and service possible.

Check out my list of the best cash advance apps to help you decide.

9 Best Cash Advance Apps

Here are the best cash advance apps you can use today to cover you until your next payday:

  1. 🏆 Varo
  2. Chime
  3. Empower
  4. Earnin
  5. Dave
  6. MoneyLion
  7. Brigit
  8. PayActiv
  9. Klover

1. Varo

  • 🏆 Best for Early Paycheck Access
  • Advance amounts: $20 – $250, and eventually up to $500
  • Repayment time: 30 days
  • Fast funding fee: $1.60 – $40

Varo offers up to a $250 cash advance to customers and, when you’ve been a long-standing customer, possibly up to $500. You’ll pay a fee that’s anywhere from $1.60 – $40, depending on the size of your advance. To qualify, you need to have at least $800 of direct deposits in the last month.

While this offer is less competitive than some of the competitors in this roundup, it’s a nice feature for Varo account holders. Varo also offers early access to your wages, giving you access to your paycheck 2 days early.

There are no monthly fees, and Varo promises no hidden fees when using any services that come with a Varo account.


  • FDIC insured
  • Automatic account alerts


  • No early wage access (EWA)
  • Overdrafts are declined

2. Chime

  • 🏆 Best Overdraft Protection
  • Advance amounts: Up to $200
  • Repayment time: Next payday
  • Fast funding fee: n/a

Chime is a little different than the other cash advance platforms on the list. Rather than floating funds into your account at your request, it comes with a built-in feature called SpotMe.

SpotMe is an overdraft protection plan that automatically spots you up to $200 on withdrawals and debit card purchases without any overdraft fees. Chime automatically applies your next deposit to the balance and notifies you when it’s paid.

You can also send boosts to friends who have accounts, which can increase their overdraft limit. You also have the option to leave a tip to pay it forward when you repay your balance. Other than that optional tip, there are no fees associated with SpotMe.

To be eligible for SpotMe, you need to sign up for a Chime checking account and receive a deposit(s) of at least $200 over the last 34 days.


  • No fees
  • Automatic overdraft protection
  • 2-day early pay


  • Advance/overdraft limited to $200
  • Limited free cash deposit locations

3. Empower

  • 🏆 Best Cash Account
  • Advance amounts: $10 – $250
  • Repayment time: Next pay day or the date you choose
  • Fast funding fee: $1 – $8

Empower offers cash advances of up to $250, with no late fees, and focuses on helping clients improve their credit, with no credit checks required for approval.

Empower offers traditional and instant delivery and doesn’t charge interest if you repay your advance on your next paycheck date or even if you need to change your repayment date.

You can choose to have your funds deposited in your external bank account or open an Empower debit card account. The card account has some convenient features, like overdraft fee protection, early pay, and cashback of up to 10% on purchases.

Empower also has a Thrive account that starts accountholders off with a $250 line of credit they can build up to $1,000 as they improve their credit. Empower reports these payments to the credit bureaus, so it’s a chance to get a better credit score with a solid repayment history.


  • Instant deposit
  • No fees for advances
  • Empower debit card account


  • $8 monthly subscription
  • Mixed customer reviews

4. Earnin

  • 🏆 Best for Saving on Fees
  • Advance amounts: Up to $100/day and $750/pay period
  • Repayment time: Next payday
  • Fast funding fee: Varies by amount and isn’t available to all members

Earnin app lets you access up to $750 of your paycheck per pay period through their Cash Out feature. You can also access your full paycheck up to two days before your scheduled payday.

There are no fees or interest rates on the advance, but you can add a small tip to keep the app alive and make sure it is still around the next time you need an advance.


  • No fees
  • No credit check required


  • Advance limited to $100 a day
  • Can take up to 2 business days to receive funds

5. Dave

  • 🏆 Best for Small Loan Amounts
  • Advance amount: Up to $500
  • Repayment time: Next payday
  • Fast funding fee: $1.99 – $13.99

Dave offers a feature called, Dave ExtraCash, that allows you to get up to $500 instantly with no interest, credit checks, or late fees.

This can make it a viable option if your credit score is low and you can’t meet your financial commitments before payday.

It can take up to 3 business days to receive the funds. If this seems too long, you can choose the Express payment option, but this comes at a fee depending on the amount you need instantly. The fee can range from $1.99 – $9.99 if transferred to your Dave account, or $2.99 – $13.99 if transferred to an external checking account.

You can get your cash advance the same day using the express option. However, ensure that the fee is lower than any penalties incurred for any late payments for which you’re borrowing the money.

Dave tops our list of the best cash advance apps that do not require direct deposit. Yes, you will need to make recurring deposits to the account, but not direct deposits.


  • Cheaper than overdraft fees if you need money instantly
  • No fee to borrow money until your next payday


  • Must link an external bank account
  • $1 monthly subscription fee

6. MoneyLion

  • 🏆 Best to Help Improve Your Credit Score
  • Advance amount: Up to $500
  • Repayment time: Next Payday
  • Fast funding fee: 1.5% of the amount transferred

With MoneyLion, you can get cash advances of as much as $500 over time. They also offer a quick turnaround, getting the money to you as quickly as the same day.

MoneyLion does not run any credit checks, but there are some criteria you need to meet to be eligible. While there is no APR on cash advances, you must pay a $1 monthly administrative fee whether or not you take advances.

The app promises early paychecks, no hidden fees, and debit card rewards, among other features. You also get price protection, where you’ll get a refund of up to $250 if you find a lower price for something you bought within 90 days with your MoneyLion Debit Mastercard®.


  • No fee payday advance
  • Regularly increases the amount of your cash advances with more use
  • Allows you to transfer money from a savings account into a portfolio of ETFs


  • $1.00 monthly administrative fee
  • Standard transfers can take up to five days

7. Brigit

  • 🏆 Best for Keeping Tabs on Your Money
  • Advance amount: $50 to $250
  • Repayment time: Next payday (can extend)
  • Fast funding fee: Small fee (not disclosed)

Brigit offers payday advances up to $250 per pay period. There are two membership plans to choose from; Free and Plus.

Free: The Free plan is free but only offers budgeting and account monitoring tools; there are no cash advances.

Plus: The Plus plan includes cash advances, credit building, $1M ID theft insurance, and a few others. A Plus membership will set you back $9.99 per month.

All advances offered by Brigit are interest-free. There are no hidden fees, and Brigit does not ask for a tip.

Depending on your plan, the funds should reach your account on the same day or up to 2 business days. You need to meet some eligibility criteria, but a credit check is not one of them.


  • Can extend repayment date
  • Interest-free paycheck advances


  • Most features are only available to Plus members
  • Limited financial tools

8. PayActiv

  • 🏆 Best Employer Offered Cash Advance Option
  • Advance amount: Up to 50% of earned wages
  • Repayment time: Next Payday
  • Fast funding fee: $1.99 – $2.99

Unlike the other apps listed here, PayActiv is a program offered by employers to their employees, and this app refers to cash advances as EWA, which stands for Earned Wage Access.

You can borrow up to 50% of the wage you have earned in the pay period you make the request. There is a $750 borrowing maximum.

Depending on your transfer method, you may pay a fee of $1.99 – $2.99 per transfer. However, ACH bank transfers are free.

While the app is beneficial to employees, employers also see a number of benefits, including less turnover and greater employee satisfaction.


  • $750 borrowing maximum
  • Financial coaching


  • Only offered through employers
  • You may be charged a fee

9. Klover

  • 🏆  Best for Easy Ways to Earn Higher Advances
  • Advance amount: Up to $200
  • Repayment time: Next Payday
  • Fast funding fee: Varies by amount

The Klover app offers cash advances of up to $200 with no catch. There is no interest or late fees and it takes only a few seconds to sign up and get approved and linking your checking account.

Klover also offers the unique opportunity to earn points for certain activities, like taking surveys or watching videos. The more points you earn, the higher the advance you may be eligible to receive.

Klover also offers tools like budgeting, setting savings goals, and tracking your credit score.


  • No credit check
  • No late fees
  • Fast answers


  • Lower loan limits
  • Fees for instant transfers

Compare the Best Cash Advance Apps

Cash Advance App Advance Amount Fast Funding Fee Free Transfer Turnaround Average App Store Rating
Varo $20 – $250 $1.60 – $40 n/a 4.8
Chime Up to $200 n/a n/a 4.75
Empower $10 – $250 $1 – $8 1 business day 4.75
Earnin $100/day Varies 1 – 3 days 4.65
Dave Up to $500 $1.99 – $13.99 1 – 3 days 4.55
MoneyLion Up to $500 1.5% of the amount transferred 1 – 5 days 4.6
Brigit $50 to $250 Small fee (not disclosed) 1 – 3 days 4.75
Payactiv Up to 50% of earned wages $1.99 – $2.99 1 – 3 days 4.6
Klover Up to $200 Varies by amount 3 days 4.55

Pros and Cons of Cash Advance Apps

It’s not a good idea to get in the habit of using cash advance apps, but sometimes it’s necessary. Before choosing this option for your financing needs, learn the pros and cons of cash advance apps.


  • Fast access to funds: Many of the best cash advance apps offer money transfers within minutes (for a fee). If you have a dire emergency, this can be a great tool.
  • May cost less than overdraft fees: If you can’t help but spend the money you want to borrow, the instant transfer fees may be less than the high overdraft fees banks charge.
  • Easy to qualify: Most cash advance apps don’t require a credit check. Instead, they rely on your data, mainly your checking account activity to determine what you can get.
  • Flexible repayment: Most cash advance apps offer flexibility with repayment. Although they would like repayment on your next payday, most offer options to make it easier on you.


  • Develop a bad habit: Borrowing money once is one thing, but if you constantly have to borrow to get ahead, it can become a bad habit or cause you to overspend knowing you can borrow.
  • Excessive fees: If you continually borrow money, it will quickly add up to excessive fees that you could avoid by budgeting better or finding other ways to increase your income.
  • Repayment may risk overdraft: Many apps on our list don’t withdraw funds for repayment if you risk an overdraft, but not all do. If you overdraft, that will increase your costs and put you in a worse financial position.

Are Cash Advance Apps Payday Lenders?

Cash advance apps may seem like payday loans, but they aren’t the same. They also are not subject to the regulations payday lenders must follow. However, the premise is similar as they both are small loans that require repayment by your next payday.

The largest difference is cash advance apps don’t charge interest, and many don’t even charge late fees. However, you should still use caution when using any cash advance options to ensure you don’t develop bad financial habits.

Alternatives to Cash Advance Apps

You should only use cash advance apps in extreme circumstances. To avoid needing one, consider these alternatives.

Side Hustle

If you can increase your income with a legit side hustle, you decrease the likelihood of needing a cash advance app.

Look for ways to supplement your full-time income with things like freelancing, babysitting, pet sitting, or rideshare driving.

Set the extra money aside for emergencies or use it to cover the bills you can’t pay, while keeping your extra spending under control.

Sell Unwanted Items

Periodically look around your house to see if there are items you no longer need. You don’t have to wait until summer to host a garage sale; you can sell them on sites like eBay, Craigslist, Poshmark, or Facebook Marketplace to make extra money.

Borrow from Friends or Family

If your emergency is a one-time thing and the amount is small, consider asking someone close to you if you can borrow the funds. Be sure you set clear terms regarding repayment so there are no misunderstandings or hard feelings.

Apply for a Personal Loan

If you need more than $50 – $100 or need more time to repay your loan, consider a personal loan. These unsecured loans are often easy to get from your local bank or an online lender and have competitive interest rates. While they aren’t interest-free, they offer more flexibility than a cash advance might.

Our Methodology

To come up with the best cash advance apps list to share with you, we considered the following:

  • Size of the advances: We looked for cash advance apps that offered small and large cash advance amounts.
  • Repayment terms: We looked for apps that offered flexibility for repayment to avoid unnecessary overdraft charges.
  • Transfer speed: Most of the apps on our list offer a free option, plus an instant transfer option for a small fee. We looked for fast standard transfer speeds.
  • Fees: The apps on our list don’t charge fees beyond the typical instant transfer fee or a small monthly subscription.
  • Customer service: We looked for apps that provided great customer service and made applying for the cash advance simple.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are cash advance apps available on Android smartphones?

Most apps are available on both Android and iOS devices, but checking device compatibility is always worth your time. Depending on your device, you can check this from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store. This can be especially true if you have an older device that is no longer supported by newer apps since it can limit which apps you can install and use.

Do you get charged interest with cash advance apps?

Generally speaking, cash advance apps do not charge interest rates, but this is not always the case. Some apps charge a membership fee, while others might ask for a tip to help keep the app up and running. However, some apps charge interest, so you need to take the time to understand what you will have to pay back.

When is it okay to use a cash advance app?

Cash Advance apps can be used when you need a little help between paychecks. Generally speaking, most apps on this list do not charge interest on the advances, but it is always wise to check. Some apps do charge fees, including late fees, which are important to take note of so that you can plan your next budget accordingly.

Can I get a $50 cash advance?

Yes! All of the cash advance apps on our list will provide at least a $50 instant loan that will be repayable when you get your next deposit.

Can I get a $100 cash advance?

Yes! All of the cash advance apps on our list will provide at least a $100 instant loan that will be repayable when you get your next deposit.

Do all cash advance apps work with Chime?

Many cash advance apps can be used with Chime, but not all are compatible. You must check with each financial platform and Chime to confirm that the app can be linked to your Chime account.

Is A Cash Advance App Best For You?

Getting a cash advance can save you from a lot of trouble and fees if you don’t have an emergency fund to tap into.

Most apps require some planning, but once you’re set up, you can receive your cash relatively quickly, with some of the apps reviewed offering instant cash turnaround.

You don’t need good credit to apply for a cash advance using some of these apps, which is a relief if your credit is poor.

An advance on your paycheck can be a great short-term solution for quick cash, but it is equally important to plan for the long term.

You should only apply for these quick short-term advances if you know you’ll have money to pay back quickly. If not, you could find yourself in trouble.

Many of the best cash advance apps also offer planning and saving tools – making use of these can help you make sure you start planning your personal finances better for a brighter future.

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