Online payday loans are short-term, high-interest loans that provide you with small cash loans quickly. Many lenders offer these loans to those with bad credit, but you should be aware of the significantly high borrowing costs.

Bad credit payday loans are short-term loans that you need to repay when you receive your next paycheck. If you don’t have enough money at the moment and need to make it through the next 2-3 weeks, a payday loan may be an easy, quick solution. However, before you sign up for one, you should know that they come at a steep price.

Because of the high-interest rates and the very short repayment terms, these loans can create a debt trap for many.  In fact, 80% of people who take out a payday loan find that they will have to borrow funds again in 30 days. Read on to learn more about how these loans work, their benefits, drawbacks, and safer alternatives that you might want to explore.

5 Best Online Payday Loans for Bad Credit

The top five most popular online payday loans for bad credit are:

1. AdvanceAmerica

Advance America is one of the largest payday lenders in the U.S., with over 900 stores across the country. There are no set minimum or maximum loan amounts. However, loan amounts start at $100 in most states. 

Interest rates can vary based on the state, but their loan terms can often translate into an annual percentage rate (APR) of 460% or more. You can apply for the loan online to get an idea about the repayment terms and loan amounts available.

2. Money Mart

Money Mart is an online platform that offers a wide range of products, such as payday loans, cash advances, and check cashing.

The amount you can borrow depends on where you reside. For example, those residing in Florida can borrow up to $500, while those in California can borrow up to $255. The average interest charge per loan repayment term is $10 to $15 for every $100 you borrow. 

3. Check ‘n Go

Check ‘n Go is a Cincinnati, OH-based lender that offers payday loans in 18 states in the U.S. The lender has been in operation since 1994. 

You can borrow $100 to $865 from Check ‘n Go, depending on where you reside. Loan fees can range from $25 to $134.07, which translates to an APR of 456% to 1,520%. 

4. AceCashExpress

Ace Cash Express is a lender based in Irving, TX, that has been in operation since 1968. Payday loans from this lender are available in eight states across the U.S. 

Loan amounts range from $100 to $1,500, depending on your location. The loans are a source of short-term credit with an estimated APR of 662%.

5. AmeriTrust

AmeriTrust is a lender based in Cleveland, TN, and has been in operation since 2001. The company offers a number of financial products, such as payday loans, title loans, and lines of credit.

You can borrow up to $400 as an advance on your paycheck from AmeriTrust. Automatic renewals are not provided, and the APR ranges from 260.71% to 782.14%, depending on the number of payments, repayment schedule, and loan amount.

How Can Online Payday Loans Help If You Have Bad Credit?

Online payday loans for bad credit are payday loans offered by online lenders to borrowers with bad credit scores. These loans typically don’t require any credit check and offer borrowers access to cash quickly to cover emergency expenses or bills. You’ll then need to repay the loan along with interest in a very short period of time, typically two weeks. The amount you can borrow will depend on the state where you reside. Payday loans are unsecured debt, which means you do not need collateral to borrow the funds.

$255 Payday Loans Online Same Day

Payday loans are not available in every state. Each state where payday loans are legal stipulates the maximum amount that can be borrowed through payday loans. For example, California lenders can offer a maximum loan amount of $255 when issuing payday loans online. Here’s a quick list of the maximum amount you can borrow in different states:

  • California- $255
  • Louisiana, Minnesota- $350
  • Indiana- $550
  • South Carolina- $550
  • Michigan- $600
  • Washington- $700
  • Delaware, Illinois, Idaho- $1,000
  • Wisconsin, Oklahoma- $1,500

1-Hour Payday Loans, No Credit Check

1-hour payday loans with no credit checks are offered by online lenders that do not run hard credit checks on borrowers. The online application may be approved in under an hour, and the loan amount is typically deposited into your bank account within one business day. You’ll then need to repay the amount you borrowed along with fees and interest when you receive your next paycheck via auto-deposit.

Pros and Cons of Online Payday Loans for Bad Credit

Online payday loans can be risky if you do not know how they work and the costs they involve. Before you apply for a payday loan, consider these pros and cons.


  • They are unsecured loans, so no collateral is required.
  • They do not require a credit check, so a credit history of any kind is not required.
  • They are easy to qualify for.
  • They are easily accessible.
  • Loan approvals and access to funds are quick.


  • They are very expensive.
  • They do not help you build credit because payday loans are generally not reported to the three major national credit bureaus.
  • They are considered to be a “bad” form of debt and can often be considered a form of predatory lending.
  • You can get into a debt cycle if you roll over the loan, month after month.
  • If you fail to repay the loan, the late charges and other penalties can be very high.
  • The lender may sue you if you default on the loan.

Tips for Finding a Reputable Online Payday Loan Lender

Before taking out loans, it’s important to ensure that the loan providers you have shortlisted are legit. Here are a few tips on how to find a reputable online payday lender:

  • Check to see if the lender has a Better Business Bureau (BBB) accreditation. This non-profit organization helps borrowers identify legitimate and reputable businesses across the U.S.  
  • Check to see if the online lender has contact details available. While most companies will have an email address and contact form, you should also have another way to get in touch with them through live chat, phone support, or a physical location.
  • Ensure that the loan company is upfront about the fees they’ll charge you before you sign. Your loan contract should clearly state the applicable fees so you’ll know the cost of borrowing, no matter what happens during the term of the loan.
  • Read the fine print on the loan agreement to see if there are any hidden charges. If you have any questions, check the FAQ page on the lender’s website or get in touch with them to ask any questions.

Risks and Potential Consequences of Taking Out an Online Payday Loan with Bad Credit

Bad credit payday loans are an attractive loan option and sometimes the only source of financing available to certain borrowers. But at times, these loans may put you in a worse position than you were before you took out the loan. Be aware of the potential consequences and risks associated with payday loans before you decide to take one out.

Risks of Taking Out an Online Payday Loan with Bad Credit

Here is a list of the top risks of taking out an online payday loan:

  • Online payday loans come with extremely high-interest rates when compared to credit cards and personal loans.
  • There are costly fees associated with these loans. For example, if you decide to roll over the loan, the lender may charge you an additional fee for the privilege of doing so.
  • Because of the high-interest rates and fees, it is easy to get caught into a debt cycle where you continue to roll over the loan or take out another loan to pay off your old loan(s).
  • Payday loans are a temporary fix for a longer-term financial problem. These loans will continue to fuel your unhealthy spending and saving habits until you address these underlying issues and learn how to manage your finances.  

Potential Consequences of Defaulting on an Online Payday Loan

While it may seem like an easy task to pay back the $100-$500 you borrowed as a payday loan, these loans are notoriously difficult to get out of. Missed payments or not paying off your payday loan right on time comes with a hefty price, as additional fees and interest will be added to your debt.

If you default on your payday loan, it can significantly damage your credit score, making it even more difficult for you to get access to credit in the future. Additionally, the lender can take legal action against you. 

If the lender sues you and the court agrees, your wages may be garnished until the loan and any late fees or penalties are paid. You may also be responsible for any legal fees or court costs the lender may have paid to recover this money from you.

Can You Avoid the Payday Loan Debt Trap?

There are two ways to avoid the payday loan debt trap: a) making sure that you pay back the loan within two weeks, and b) finding a better alternative to get the funds you need.

Alternatives to Online Payday Loans for Bad Credit

The Federal Trade Commission cautions borrowers to try and find alternative loan options before they decide to take out online payday loans. Here are a few options worth considering.

Talk To Your Creditor

If you are taking out a loan because you are having trouble keeping up with other bills, talk to your existing creditors to see if they have a solution. Most lenders are willing to work with borrowers to set up an easier payment plan or extend the due date if you have a good credit history.

Ask Your Employer For an Advance

Ask your employer if they can provide you with an advance on your pay. Many companies offer a payday advance where you’ll be able to get cash fast but without the high fees charged by payday lenders. Keep in mind that this will (of course) lower the amount you will receive on your next paycheck.   

Borrow From Family and Friends

Borrow from friends or family if you are in a financial bind. If you decide to ask for help, be sure to pay them back on time to avoid damaging your relationship with them.

Get a Cash Advance

Consider taking out a cash advance on your credit card or revolving line of credit. While you’ll still need to pay interest and fees, this will be less expensive than payday loans.

Cut Down Your Expenses

Review your budget to see if you can free up some cash by cutting down on discretionary purchases such as entertainment, dining out, purchases of frivolous items, and pleasure travel. There are several ways you can save money and avoid taking out a payday loan.

Ask for Overtime Hours at Your Place of Work

Check to see if you can work some overtime hours at your job or if you can take up a side job to increase your monthly income, temporarily or maybe even permanently. This will eliminate the need to turn to online payday loans for unexpected expenses.

Tips for Repaying an Online Payday Loan

If none of the above alternatives work for you and you have to take out an online payday loan, there are several ways to repay your loan on time to avoid getting into a debt trap. Here are a few tips worth considering:

  • Only borrow as much as you need. Avoid borrowing too much because it will only make it more challenging to pay it off later.
  • Create a repayment plan in advance so you’ll know exactly how you’ll be paying off the payday loan before the due date.
  • Do not take out any additional loans before you pay off the payday loan.
  • If you have multiple payday loans, consider debt consolidation. If you have good credit and can qualify for a fixed-rate installment loan at a lower interest rate, use those funds to pay off your payday loans. You’ll then have affordable installments each month. Consolidation loans with bad credit will still have a lower interest rate compared to payday loans.

Pay Off Your Online Payday Loans

Online payday loans can help you cover short-term expenses and are available without collateral. The only catch here is that these loans come with very high interest rates and fees. 

As a borrower, you should only consider online payday loans if you do not have any other alternative loan products available for your financial needs. Take a look at safer alternatives first, such as cash advances and personal loans.

If you have already taken out payday loans and have other forms of unsecured debt over 10k, TurboDebt can help you get out of the debt cycle. Our debt professionals can help you find the right debt relief option based on your financial situation. Connect with us today for a free consultation. Read our reviews to see how our debt relief services have helped thousands of clients.