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Money loan apps let you borrow cash when you're in a pinch and can't wait until the next paycheck. If you need a small amount of money to cover gas or another purchase, turning to these apps can be a quick and easy way to obtain funding. But it is important to consider the cost of using these apps compared to other funding options such as a personal loan or a credit card. Some apps charge unique fees, such as a subscription fee or extra fees for fast funding. We'll go over your best options for money loan apps, as well as some other funding alternatives to consider.

Are Money Loan Apps Safe?

When scrambling for fast cash, you might be tempted to jump at the easiest option available for money without any regard for your informational safety. Thankfully, money loan apps use the same security features and technology as banks to protect your financial data, like 256-bit encryption, multi-factor authentication, automatic signout and ID verification. They might also require a PIN to sign in and phone verification.

As for making your data available to third parties, each cash advance app has a different policy.  It's a good idea to check an app's security and data protection measures before creating an account on one of these platforms.

6 Best Money Apps That Will Loan You Cash

In this roundup, we've featured our top picks for money loan apps, their standout features, and their pluses and minuses.

  • Best for Speedy Access to Cash: EarnIn
  • Best for Flexible Repayment: Dave
  • Best for Smaller Amounts: Cash App
  • Best for Budgeting Tools: Brigit
  • Best for Larger Amounts: Branch
  • Best for Overdraft Protection: Chime

Best for Speedy Access to Cash: EarnIn

EarnIn app



  • No mandatory fees
  • No credit check 
  • Access up to $100 of your pay a day within minutes 
  • “Boosts” feature can give a temporary pay increase 


  • Need a steady payday and pay schedule
  • Can only sign up with one employer

Earnin has a spot on our list thanks to its Lightning Speed feature, which can drop cash into your account in minutes (note that fees may apply). You can access up to $100 daily or up to $750 per pay period.

There are technically no fees (you pay back your cash advance when the next payday rolls around), but you can offer an optional tip. A downside is that you need to have a steady pay cycle. Gig economy workers will need to look elsewhere.


  • How much you can borrow: Up to $100 a day, $750 per pay period
  • Price: No cost; tipping is optional
  • Fees: No interest fees
  • Loans money instantly? Yes

Best for Flexible Repayment: Dave

Dave app



  • Payment extension available with no late fees 
  • Credit builder option (for a fee)
  • Budgeting features
  • No credit checks
  • No interest fees charged


  • Small monthly fee 
  • Need to open a checking account

There's a lot to love about Dave's cash advance option, such as its easy sign up online, fast cash transfer and no credit checks. But some particularly notable features are its lack of late fees and no interest fees charged, although there are other fees for extra services such as express transfers.

In order to use Dave, you'll need to pay a membership fee of $1 a month and open an ExtraCash account to receive the cash advance.


  • How much you can borrow: Up to $500
  • Price: $1 monthly membership fee
  • Fees:
    • No interest fees
    • Express transfers:
      • $1.99 to $9.99 for Dave spending transfers
      • $2.99 to $13.99 for external transfers
  • Loans money instantly? Yes, for a fee

Best for Smaller Amounts: Cash App

Cash App

Cash App


  • Can borrow up to $200 
  • Easy to use for existing Cash App users 
  • Can use for any household or personal expenses


  • 5% interest fee
  • 1.25% per week late fee 
  • Loan must be repaid within four weeks

If you qualify for the feature, Cash App Borrow lets you borrow as little as $20 and up to $200, and you'll get the funds immediately. There is no monthly subscription fee, but you’ll incur a 5% interest fee on a small loan from Borrow, which you’ll need to repay within four weeks.

If you're an existing Cash App user and meet the eligibility requirements, you can get funds quickly. Plus, there are also several ways you can repay your loan: by setting up autopay, making manual payments, or mailing a check. 


  • How much you can borrow: Up to $200
  • Price: None
  • Fees: 5% interest on balance, 1.25% per week late week
  • Loans money instantly: Yes

Best for Budgeting Tools: Brigit

Brigit app



  • Can borrow up to $250 
  • Get funds instantly 
  • No credit check 
  • Builds credit 
  • No interest fees


  • Monthly subscription fee of $9.99 to access cash advance with Plus plan
  • Need at least three regular deposits from the same employer or source
  • Can't ask for an increase in advancement amount

Brigit’s app includes comprehensive, sophisticated budgeting features to help you analyze your spending habits, get alerts on upcoming bills, and receive pointers for improving your finances. Unlike other money loan apps, Brigit reports your payments to the credit bureau to help build credit. However, signing up for Brigit means you must pony up a $9.99 monthly subscription fee if you want to access all of its features.


  • How much you can borrow: Up to $250
  • Price: $9.99 monthly subscription fee
  • Fees: No interest fees
  • Loans money instantly? Yes

Best for Larger Amounts: Branch

Branch app



  • Can borrow up to $150 a day
  • Deposit cash from select drugstores and retailers 
  • Can link up to financial apps to send and receive money
  • No interest fees


  • Your employer usually needs to be signed up as a Branch partner
  • Fees for instant transfer to an external bank account

With Branch, you can get a payday advance of up to $150 a day as long as it's no more than 50% of your paycheck. Branch advance limits are higher than competitors, and you can deposit cash using your Branch branded debit card. While there are a lot of great perks with Branch, your workplace needs to be a Branch partner to use the app. You can sign up without an employer partnership but expect to jump through hoops and face limitations. 


  • How much you can borrow: Up to $150 a day
  • Price: None
  • Fees:
    • No interest fees
    • No fees for instant transfer or 3-day transfer to an external bank account. Fees apply for instant transfer to an external bank account ($2.99 to $4.99, depending on the transfer amount).
  • Loans money instantly? Yes

Best for Overdraft Protection: Chime

Chime app



  • Get paid up to two days early 
  • Overdraft protection of up to $200 
  • “Boost” feature allows for temporary limit increases


  • Need to sign up for a Chime checking account 

Once you open a checking account and set up direct deposit with Chime, you can get your entire paycheck up to two days early. Chime's SpotMe feature offers fee-free overdraft protection ranging from $20 to $200. Boosts you get from friends can temporarily increase your overdraft protection limit. More importantly, there are no fees when you're a Chime member.


  • How much you can borrow: Entire paycheck up to two days early, up to $200 overdraft
  • Price: No
  • Fees: No interest or monthly maintenance fees.
  • Loans money instantly? No

Alternatives to Money Apps If You Need a Loan

If borrowing cash from a money loan app might not be the best choice for you, here are some other options to consider:

Personal Loan

Many online lenders have simple applications, speedy processing times, and larger loan amounts than a money loan app. However, they can’t give you money instantly, and you'll need to pay interest and monthly payments until the loan is paid off. To determine how much you can borrow, use our personal loan calculator.

0% Intro APR Credit Card

If you have great credit, you may qualify for a 0% intro APR credit card, which allows you to make interest-free purchases during the promotional period. As long as you pay off the balance before the promotional time frame, you'll avoid paying interest. But if you carry a balance after that promotional period ends, you'll be facing ultra-high interest rates.

Pay No Interest for a Limited Time

Here Are the Best Balance Transfer Cards

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dollar sign made out of money

Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL)

Buy now pay later (BNPL) plans give you a small loan to make an online purchase that you otherwise wouldn't be able to afford. Short-term BNPL loans usually don’t have interest, but you'll need to pay off the loan over four or six installments over a few months to avoid late fees. Longer-term BNPL plans might charge you interest—and the rates tend to be hefty. Opt for too many BNPL plans, and you can easily fall into a debt trap.

Friends and Family Loan

Consider asking a trusted friend or family member if they would loan you money. If you go this route, it’s best to settle on terms and a repayment schedule like you would do with a bank. That way, you can preserve the relationship and avoid unpleasant awkwardness down the line.

Side Hustle

Instead of getting a payday advance or small loan from a cash advance app, pick up a side hustle for extra funds. The small amounts you earn picking up side gigs can help tide you over until the next paycheck. A few hundred extra dollars you earn from dog walking or selling crafty wares on Etsy can be just what you need to cover your bills.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Money loan and cash advance apps aren't considered payday lenders, but, like payday lenders they come with very high fees. Most money loan apps don't report your payments to the credit bureaus, so they can't impact your credit score one way or the other.

  • Each money loan app features different borrowing limits ranging from $150 per day or between $200 and $250. They're usually smaller amounts than other types of loans. The specific amount you can borrow depends on your situation and how much you're approved for. The lender might bump up this amount if you establish positive financial behaviors, such as making several on-time payments in a row.

  • If a money loan or cash advance app offers you a payday advance, they’ll instantly drop funds into your account. Also, if there's an "instant payment" button, you can receive the funds right away. Money apps that can give you an instant loan include EarnIn, Brigit, and Dave.


Jackie Lam

Jackie Lam is a freelance writer with experience covering small business, insurance, budgeting, freelancing and money, and personal finance. Her work has appeared in, BuzzFeed, U.S. World & News Report, Time's NextAdvisor, Forbes, and Refinery29. She is an AFC (accredited financial coach) and works with artists, freelancers, and small businesses to improve their relationships with money.