Applying for a payday loan should be your last resort, but you could think about getting one if you have:
Exhausted all other options
An unavoidable reason for needing the money
Payday loans are one of the most expensive types of borrowing, so only apply if you desperately need the money and can afford to pay it back over the term you agree.
How does a payday loan work?
It is a loan designed to give you quick cash in an emergency.
You could borrow between £50 and £2,500, and pay it off over several months or in one lump sum, depending on the length of the loan you choose.
Lenders design their loans to be short term, but most let you extend your repayment date by an extra month. This gives you more time to pay it back, but it increases the interest you pay.
How to get the cheapest payday loan
To find the cheapest payday loan you need to think about:
How much you need to borrow
How quickly you can pay it back
The cheapest payday loan will be the one that costs you the least to repay, based on the amount you borrow and the term you pay it back over.
What happens if you cannot pay it back?
You should speak to your lender and explain your situation. They may offer you a new repayment plan you can afford.
Here are some online resources for financial advice with payday loans:
StepChange: Free online, independent, consumer credit advice
Citizen's Advice Bureau: Advice and guidance on payday loans
Money Advice Service: Free advice on payday loans
Payday loan FAQs
When will I know if my payday loan application is approved?
Most lenders tell you instantly or within minutes, but it could take longer if you give incorrect information on your application.
Can I get a payday loan without going through a credit check?
No, all payday loan applications require a credit check.
What if my payday loan application is declined?
Ask the lender why. You should also find out if there are any issues with your credit record.
Is it harder to get a loan with bad credit?
Yes, your credit record tells lenders if you are a responsible borrower, but the lenders in this comparison may accept you with bad credit.
When will the money arrive in my bank account?
Most payday lenders send the money on the same day your application is approved, but it could take up to a couple of days to reach your account.
How many payday loans can I have?
There is no limit, as long as you pass the lender's credit check process and give honest information about any existing loans you have when you apply.
Are payday lenders regulated?
Legally, they must be regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) but not all are. Check the FCA website to find out which lenders are regulated.
What does responsible lending mean?
Lenders can only let you borrow money if you can afford to pay it back. Here is more information on the rules a lender must follow.
About our payday loans comparison
Who do we include in this comparison?
We include our panel of direct lenders that offer short term loans. We check and verify they are all authorised and regulated by the FCA. They also need to complete our due diligence questionnaire to make sure they satisfy our screening standards.
We check these lenders do not pass your details to other lenders or brokers without your permission. Here is more information about how our website works.
We check this because lenders you find elsewhere may not be authorised and could even try to defraud you. Find out more about unauthorised lenders on the FCA website.
How do we order our results?
We display them based on the details you enter in our payday loan calculator, e.g. the loan amount and term you need. The results are ordered by how much they cost, and the cheapest deals are shown first. If two separate loans cost exactly the same amount, we choose which comes first at random.
How do we make money from our comparison?
We have commercial agreements with the companies in this comparison and get paid commission if we help you take out one of their products or services. Find out more here.
You do not pay any extra and the deal you get is not affected.