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Compare payday loans

Make an informed decision when comparing and applying for a payday loan.

⚠️ Warning: Be cautious with payday loans
Payday loans are expensive. If you're experiencing financial hardship call Credit Counselling Canada for free financial counselling (Monday-Friday 8:00am-5:00pm at +1 866-398-5999). Consider alternatives instead of a payday loan:
  • Local resources. Government programs and nonprofits offer free financial services and help with food, utilities and rent.
  • Debt relief companies. There are services to help you reduce your debt payments.
  • Payment extensions. Talk with bill providers about longer payment plans or due-date extensions.
  • Side jobs. Sell unwanted items online, sign up for food delivery and more.

Compare payday loans

Name Product Loan Amount Loan Term Interest Rate Turnaround Time Serviced Provinces
Cash Money Payday Loan
$100 - $1,500
5 - 40 days
Varies by province
As little as 15 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer
Apply for your first $300 payday loan at a $20 cost (excludes SK applicants).

You'll need to be 18 years of age or older and have a net income of at least $1,000/month. Residents of MB and NB must apply in-store for a loan.
iCASH Payday Loan
$100 - $1,500
7 - 62 days
Varies by province
As little as 2 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer
Get up to 20% in cash back once your payday loan is fully repaid. Conditions apply.

To be eligible, you'll need to be at least 19 years of age and have a net income of at least $800/month deposited into your bank account.
GoDay Payday Loan
$100 - $1,500
Up to 62 days
Varies by Province
As little as 2 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer
To apply, you'll need to be a Canadian resident over the age of 18 with a valid email address, phone number and an open bank account with a Canadian bank or credit union.

Compare up to 4 providers

We compare the following cash lenders

If you’re in a financial emergency, you may be considering taking out a payday loan to help make ends meet. Payday loans are incredibly convenient, providing a quick injection of cash within minutes after approval. But consumers need to be cautious with these types of loans. They’re one of the most expensive types of financing available, with notoriously steep interest rates. You must have a repayment plan in place with terms that are as short as 2 weeks.

We’ll help you understand how these payday loans work, what to consider before borrowing and how regulations vary between provinces and territories. Plus, we’ll provide you with some alternatives to these high cost loans.

What is a payday loan?

A payday loan is a loan of up to $1,500 provided in the form of credit that is advanced to you when you need some money. It’s generally paid back at the same time you receive your paycheque, hence the term “payday loan”. In Canada, payday loans are regulated under individual laws and restrictions in each province – but beware: not all provinces have the same legislation, and none of the territories have legislation surrounding these loans except at the federal level.

Maximum borrowing costs per province
Always refer to your contract for exact repayment amounts and costs as they may vary from our results.
ProvinceMaximum allowable cost of borrowing
Alberta, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Ontario & Prince Edward Island$15 per $100 borrowed
Manitoba & Saskatchewan$17 per $100 borrowed
Nova Scotia$19 per $100 borrowed
Newfoundland and Labrador$21 per $100 borrowed
Northwest Territories, Nunavut & the Yukon$60 per $100 borrowed
QuebecLimit of 35% annual interest rate (AIR)

What options do I have for payday loan lenders?

If you’re looking to apply for a payday loan, you have a few options when it comes to choosing a lender:

Online payday loan lenders.Applying for a loan online is quick and easy, and the whole process can be handled without needing to visit a physical location. You can find lenders that don’t require you to fax any documents over and can e-transfer funds within minutes after approval.
Storefront payday loan lenders.Some lenders have extensive branch networks, and if there’s one located near you that’s convenient, you can apply in person at their store. Just bring along the required documentation and you can have your approved loan within the hour.

How much will a payday loan cost?

Payday loans are some of the most expensive types of financing you’ll come across. The annual percentage rate (APR) charged on payday loans is very high, often between 390% and 780%. For comparison’s sake, credit card APRs tend to sit around 19% to 29.99%, and personal loan APRs can range from around 6% to 47%. For this reason, interest charges on payday loans may often be stated in terms of how much you’ll pay for every $100 you borrow.

Depending on the province where you reside, the fees for your loan will differ. For example, in Ontario, you’ll pay $15 in fees for every $100 you borrow, while in Newfoundland, you could pay up to $21 per $100 borrowed – one of the highest amounts in Canada.

Repayment example

Here’s an example of repaying a payday loan in BC:

  • Loan Amount: $500
  • Loan Term: 14 days
  • APR (Annual Percentage Rate): 391%
  • Borrowing fee: $15 for every $100 = $75
  • Total repayment amount: $575

What other fees are associated with payday loans?

If you’re late or miss a repayment, you may be charged other fees, which can include:

  • Late payment fees. If you’re late with a repayment and don’t notify your lender beforehand, then you’ll likely be charged a fee.
  • Bounced cheque or failed direct debit. If your payment bounces, you will usually be charged a fee.
  • Arrears fees. You’ll be charged a fee if your account goes into arrears.
  • Collection fees. Any loans which are referred to collections or are defaulted on may incur additional fees.
  • Collection letter send out. If you receive a collection letter because the lender cannot contact you about repaying your loan, you may be charged a fee.
  • Statement fee. If you request an account statement from the lender you may be charged a fee.

How are payday loans different from personal loans?

There are some key disparities between payday loans and personal loans. They include the following:

  • Payday loans have shorter terms. Payday loans get their name because you’re typically required to pay back your loan by your next payday. They’re designed to be short-term solutions to your financial problems. When you apply for a loan, the lender asks you how frequently you’re paid to determine your final repayment due date.
  • Payday loans have higher rates and fees. Due to their short-term nature and accessibility, payday loans come with much higher annual percentage interest rates (APRs) than other forms of credit. All provinces, with the exception of the 3 territories, regulate how high these APRs can be, but even with regulation, many are still very steep when compared to other types of credit. Be sure to take into account the full cost before you apply.
  • Payday loans have smaller loan amounts. How much you can borrow may depend on the province or territory you’re in, but you can usually borrow $100 up to a maximum of $1,500.
  • Payday loans provide quick access to cash. Most payday lenders will provide you with a decision on the spot or within 60 seconds. If you clear verification of your identity and income, you could receive funds immediately after approval. If you’ve applied in-person, this could mean receiving cash at the store or receiving an Interac e-Transfer within 15 minutes after approval.

Compare payday loans

What are the benefits?

When you apply for a payday loan, some of the benefits include:

  • Easy application. You can usually apply for payday loans online in under 10 minutes, and you won’t have to fax any of your documents over. There’s no need to visit any physical locations, unless you’d rather apply in person.
  • Fast turnaround time. If you’re in need of money quickly, payday loan lenders usually provide almost instantaneous approval. Count on getting your funds in as little as a few minutes after approval, depending on the lender you’re working with.
  • Bad credit doesn’t matter. Payday lenders shift the emphasis from your credit score to your ability to repay your loan. As long as you can prove you have a stable income to repay your loan, you should be in the clear.

Are payday loans a bad idea?

Payday loans are not viewed positively because of their excruciatingly high fees. Customers who desperately need financing turn to payday loans as they are easy to get and provide quick financial relief – but they also throw borrowers into an endless cycle of debt with their high costs.

You can also be penalized for not sticking to the repayment requirements. If you default on the loan or the loan goes into collections, you’ll receive a negative mark on your credit score that can stay there for up to 6 years.

Because of these high stakes, consider if you have any doubts about your ability to meet your repayments. Ultimately, you may want to consider other credit options.

Before applying for a payday loan, consider the following:

  • Are you eligible for any lower cost loans? You may be able to qualify for a cheaper source of financing.
  • Will the repayments be manageable by you? Most lenders outline the APR that will be charged before you apply for a loan. Work out if this will be manageable with your current budget before proceeding.
  • What are you using the loan for? Payday loans are a Band-Aid solution and aren’t designed to fix long-term financial problems. If you have substantial financial problems, consider credit counselling.

How to apply

While the application process varies from lender to lender, these are the typical steps you’ll need to follow:

  1. Click the green “Go to site” button above or visit a lender’s website.
  2. Provide information about yourself, including your contact details and Social Insurance Number.
  3. Fill in your employment details or benefits information if you’re receiving government benefits such as a pension, EI or welfare.
  4. Provide information about your monthly income, including how frequently you’re paid.
  5. Enter your bank account details and agree to electronic transfers. Confirm the website is secure before providing this information.

You’ll need to read over a lender’s terms of service and privacy policy before submitting your application. The best payday loan providers will always have a secure online application and outline your loan’s final amount so you know exactly how much it will cost to borrow. Payday lenders are not allowed to charge more than the amount capped by provincial rules.

    Compare payday loans

    What happens after I apply for a payday loan?

    Once you’ve submitted your application, most lenders will give you a decision within minutes. If you’re applying online, lenders can typically e-transfer payday loans within minutes or deposit the funds into your bank account within 1 business day if not faster, as long as you provide adequate identity and income verification. If you’re applying in-store, you can receive your funds via cash or cheque.

    When it’s time to repay, your lender will deduct the principal amount and any fees you owe directly from your bank account or cash the cheque you left. Make sure you have enough money in your bank account on your due date. If your payment bounces, you could face steep non-sufficient funds (NSF) fees or overdraft fees from your bank.

    Keep in mind, you’re under no obligation to accept the terms of your payday loan offer. If you’ve read through the terms and conditions before signing, you can always decline the offered loan. If you’ve signed the contract, some provinces allow a cooling-off period where you can cancel the payday loan without penalty.

    Reasons why you might have been rejected

    While your lender should provide a reason you weren’t approved for a payday loan, these are 4 of the most likely reasons:

    • You aren’t employed or your income is too low.
    • You already have a payday loan or recently borrowed one.
    • You have too many current debts.
    • You had errors on your application.

    Am I eligible for a payday loan if…

    • I receive a pension?

    If you’re retired or physically unable to work, you can still access a line of credit, personal loan or a payday loan. Some lenders consider your pension as income, so you may still be eligible depending on your financial situation and why you need the loan. Learn more about loans for retirees.

    • I receive welfare payments?

    Some payday lenders and institutions consider welfare payments as income, so you may be eligible. It generally depends on how much you earn, what kind of financial situation you’re in and what kind of payments you receive. Contact a lender to find out if you’re eligible. Learn more about payday loans for welfare recipients.

    • I have bad credit?

    It’s possible to get a payday loan with bad credit. When reviewing your application, lenders will place less emphasis on your credit and more on your income.

    List of payday lenders that accept government benefits

    How do I repay my payday loan?

    There are a few options available when it comes to repaying your loan. Depending on the lender and the type of loan you apply for, you may be able to use any of the following options to repay your loan:

    • Direct debit repayments. This is the most common way to make repayments. You will need to provide your bank account details and your lender will automatically withdraw your repayments from your bank account. Before you authorize this, make sure you know what dates the repayments are due to come out so that you can make sure you have enough money in your account.
    • Post-dated cheque. This option is also offered by some lenders, usually by those who have physical stores. This method involves you giving the lender a cheque that it can cash on the day your repayment is due. Remember to still make note of the payment date since you will need to have the cash in your bank account.

    Note: while the majority of lenders will direct debit your account on the day you get paid, they cannot deduct the repayment directly from your pay as this is illegal in many provinces.

    How do I stay on top of my repayment?

    Ask yourself these questions to make sure a payday loan is a feasible financial option that won’t cause you long-term problems:

    • How much are my monthly bills? Write down and add up your rent or mortgage, utilities and other monthly expenses.
    • How much are my living expenses? Consider how much you need for groceries, gas for your car, a few dollars for that morning coffee and other living expenses.
    • How much of my paycheque do I have left? Subtract your monthly costs from your monthly salary after taxes. If you have enough left to cover your payday loan repayment, your loan is affordable.

    Ultimately, you need to know that you can afford to repay your loan according to the terms, while still having enough cash to pay for your regular expenses. Otherwise, you may find yourself in a recurring debt situation.

    What happens if I don’t pay back a payday loan?

    If you don’t pay back a payday loan, our loan goes into default. Having a defaulted loan on your credit report causes your credit score to drop, making it difficult to qualify for financing in the future. Often, payday lenders hire debt collectors to try to collect on the loan.

    If you’re unable to make a payment on your payday loan, contact your creditor immediately to explain your situation. They might be willing to work with you to create a plan that helps you more easily pay back what you owe.

    Can you roll over a payday loan?

    Renewing your loan just once can double its cost and make it even more difficult to pay off in the future. For this reason, most provinces have made direct rollovers illegal. If you want to take out another loan, you’ll first have to pay off your current loan and then re-apply for a new loan.

    Some lenders have benefits for repeat borrowers, such as increased borrowing amounts and quicker funding. However, don’t get into the habit of taking out payday loans. These are short-term solutions that often trigger a “debt spiral.” Approximately 4 in 10 bankruptcies involve payday loans. Several years ago, the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada reported that around 1/3 of those who take out a payday loan use something other than their paycheque to repay it, and around 7% resort to taking out another payday loan.

    Alternatives to taking out a payday loan

    A payday loan can be an expensive way to get emergency financing. Consider these payday loan alternatives before you borrow:

    • Provincial or federal aid. If you find yourself in need of consistent financial assistance, you might want to look into provincial or federal programs. Housing assistance and other aid could help reduce your bills so you can avoid payday loans.
    • Friends and family. If you’re in a financial pinch, your friends and family may be willing to help. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a loan – giving you a ride while your car is in the shop or babysitting could help take the stress off your budget.
    • Installment loans. These types of loans are for small amounts of money, but you pay back your repayments over time in installments as opposed to one lump sum like a payday loan. You can learn more about installment loans here.
    • Credit union loans. Credit unions and other small banks sometimes offer small loans to their existing customers. Salary advances can be applied for and repaid on your next payday, often for more reasonable rates.
    • Bank overdraft. If your bank account is in good standing, you may be eligible for a small, personal loan or overdraft. Contact your current bank to discuss your eligibility.

    Bottom line

    A payday loan is best saved as a last resort when you’re facing an emergency financial situation. If you’ve weighed the alternatives and believe a payday loan is right for you, you can compare your payday loan options to find the best deal available to you.

    Frequently asked questions

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