Are you struggling financially?
If you're struggling financially and would like to speak to someone for free financial advice, information and assistance you can call the Financial Counsellors hotline on 1800 007 007 (open from 9:30am to 4pm, Monday to Friday). If you are suffering financial problems related to the coronavirus pandemic you may be eligible for additional support.
⚠️ Warning about Borrowing
Do you really need a loan today?*
It can be expensive to borrow small amounts of money and borrowing may not solve your money problems.
Check your options before you borrow:
- For information about other options for managing bills and debts, ring 1800 007 007 from anywhere in Australia to talk to a free and independent financial counsellor
- Talk to your electricity, gas, phone or water provider to see if you can work out a payment plan
- If you are on government benefits, ask if you can receive an advance from Centrelink: Phone: 13 17 94
The Government's MoneySmart website shows you how small amount loans work and suggests other options that may help you.
* This statement is an Australian Government requirement under the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009.
Cash advances can also be short term finance solution services provided by most credit card and charge card issuers and from certain borrowers' current banks. However, this guide will be focusing on online cash advances specifically.
How does an online cash advance actually work?
Some factors to consider in regards to online cash advances include:
Responsible lenders are usually required to perform credit checks on all applicants as it is Australian law that all lenders be confident that approved applicants are offered the appropriate credit that they are realistically able to repay. Lenders who offer loans to applicants with bad credit history will often still check credit scores. Some lenders may offer online cash advances without credit checks, but they will still require documentation to prove that applicants can repay, such as bank statements. Lenders who offer 'guaranteed approval' should be avoided or reported, as no loan should be made if the borrower is not reasonably able to repay it.
All loan applicants will be required to provide evidence of some form of income in order to qualify for any type of finance. This is usually as simple as verifying an applicant's employment online. Unemployed applicants or applicants on Centrelink payments might still qualify for finance, but there may be additional criteria that they are required to meet in order to do so.
Online cash advance lenders offer a fully online application process that is usually fairly straightforward. Often, automated systems which check an applicant's expense history without the need for statements, though some lenders may require borrowers to submit statements themselves online. Applicants may also be required to scan in and email copies of their driver's licence, passport, etc. to verify their identity. Applicants can check the requirements of document submission on our review pages or with the lender directly before applying.
Options for online cash advances
There are a few ways to take out an online cash advance. Here is a breakdown of the facilities available:
An overdraft facility is something that can be set up with a borrower's current bank that is linked to their existing transaction account. An overdraft facility allows users to overdraw their account up to and including a certain limit. The limit will be agreed upon by the applicant and the bank and will depend on the financial position of the borrower. Some banks offer overdraft facilities in excess of $25,000. For individuals who have negative marks on their credit file but a good relationship with their bank, an overdraft facility still may be an option in some cases. With an overdraft facility, users only pay for what they borrow.
A payday loan allows customers to borrow between $100 and $2,000 via a short-term loan. Payday lenders provide loans to individuals in a variety of financial circumstances, including those with poor creditworthiness. Typically, customers will have to make repayments on a payday loan in line with when they receive their pay. A payday lender can transfer funds into the borrower's nominated bank account on the same day or by the next business day.
For applicants who need more than $2,000, they can consider a medium loan. These loans are still a form of short term payday loan, but give borrowers access to between $2,001 and $5,000, and occasionally even above $5,000. Applicants with a bad credit history can usually still apply.
How much will it cost?
When borrowing with an instant loan online, applicants often pay the cost of convenience. Here is an outline of some fees and rates to expect:
- Overdraft. Overdraft users will pay between 16-20% p.a. for an overdraft plus ongoing fees.
- Short term loan. A short-term loan under $2,000 will come with a maximum of a 4% monthly fee and a 20% establishment fee.
- Medium loan. Quick advances between $2,001 and $5,000 have a $400 application fee and a rate of 48% p.a.
What to be aware of with cash advances
- High interest rates, fees and charges. The type of credit that someone needs plays a role in the costs that they will end up paying. Other factors that have a bearing on this include the creditworthiness of the borrower and the lender that they choose. Applicants should make sure that they are aware of any and all applicable fees.
- Advance term. The loan term impacts the cost of the loan. A longer loan term will increase the loan's overall cost, but shorter terms mean higher repayments. Overdrafts have no set repayments and allow you to pay back the advance at your own pace. In contrast, payday loans have very strict repayment terms that usually line up with the borrower's pay cycle.
- Cash advance amount. Different cash advance facilities offer different loan amounts, so all applicants need to ensure that they will be able to get the amount that they need. Over-borrowing will end up with the applicant paying extra unnecessary interest.
How to get a cash advance online
- Fill out an application online. Online cash advances require only a fully online process. There's no faxing of documents and the lender usually just requires read-only access to the applicant's transaction history and their credit file.
- Approval. This can take as little as 60 seconds. Applicants can find out via phone, email or SMS. Approval is subject to the credit provider's eligibility criteria.
- E-sign a contract and receive the loan. Agree via SMS or email and then receive the money into a nominated bank account.
Comparison of online cash advances
Cash advance speeds by brand
|Brand||When you receive your cash||What do you need to do?||How much can you apply for?||More details|
|Cash Train||Same day||Loan needs to be approved by 2pm||$200 - $2,000||More|
|Credit24||Same day||Loan needs to be approved by 3pm||$500 to $2,000||More|
|enably||One hour||Approval takes one hour and you'll be transferred funds minutes after. CommBank customers receive in minutes, others may take longer.||$200 - $2,000||More|
|MoneyMe||One hour||Approval and funds transfer takes on hour. Receiving funds depends on bank processing times.||$500 - $50,000||More|
|MoneySpot||One hour||You can receive your funds within minutes of being approved if you bank with CommBank, other banks take one hour.||$200 to $2,000||More|
|Nimble||One hour||Loan must be confirmed before 4:30pm to receive within the hour.||$300 - $5,000||More|
|Sunshine Loans||One hour||Loan needs to be approved within business hours to receive it within the hour.||$150 - $2,000||More|
|Swoosh Finance||Overnight||Loan needs to be approved by 3:30pm QLD time to be transferred overnight.||$2,000 - $4,584||More|
|Wallet Wizard||Same day||Loans need to be approved by 2:30pm to receive same-day funds.||$500 - $5,000||More|
Cash advance eligibility
Eligibility criteria differ between lenders, but generally, applicants will need to meet the following criteria:
- Are aged 18 or over
- Earn a regular income (either from employment or Centrelink)
- Lenders may require the majority of your income not be from Centrelink
- Must be able to afford the repayments
Please note that while prospective applicants who are unemployed or receive Centrelink payments may still have finance options available, they may have to meet additional eligibility criteria.
How to apply for an online cash advance
To apply for an online cash advance payday loan, use the comparison table on this page to compare options. Simply click ‘Go to site’ to be directed to the lender’s website where an online application form will be hosted.
To apply for an overdraft, borrowers can apply directly with their current bank or credit union. Fees and rates will differ between institutions, so contacting a provider directly is likely the best method of comparing options.
Some credit cards are also available with cash advance facilities, and can be compared online.
Online cash advances usually refer to payday loans. Payday loan lenders offer smaller loans compared to standard personal loan lenders. Payday loans, or online cash advances, carry high fees and interest rates attached. If you have a bad credit score you can still apply for online cash advances although they should only be used for financial emergencies since the repayments can be expensive.