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7 alternatives to Blue Trust Loans

Compare 7 low-cost borrowing alternatives with more consumer protections than a tribal lender.

Blue Trust Loans is a direct tribal lender run by the Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians. It offers loans of $100 to $3,000. But as a tribal lender, its loans aren’t as regulated as other lenders, which means you could pay APRs exceeding 840%. You’ll also have to work with tribal arbitration, rather than a US court, if you have a dispute. And there have been lawsuits against Blue Trust in the past.
Our alternatives to Blue Trust Loans include multiple cash advance apps that offer 0% interest and no-financing-fee loans between paydays. Because they don’t charge interest, cash advance apps can help save money while keeping you out of a cycle of high-cost debt.
But loan amounts tend to be lower with cash apps — typically topping out at $250 or $500. If you need a larger loan amount, consider a lender that caters to bad credit borrowers, like Possible Finance or OppLoans. Both charge relatively high interest, but it’s much lower than what you could pay with Blue Trust.

What’s changed in 2023?

We updated our list of lenders to offer more low-cost, no-credit-check options for borrowing money, including a selection of cash apps that offer interest-free loans between paydays — plus benefits like credit-building programs, free overdraft protection and budgeting tools. We also included two lenders that offer higher limit loans to bad credit borrowers but with lower APRs than Blue Trust.

Our 7 top picks for loans like Blue Trust Loans

Alternative for overdraft feature: Chime SpotMe

Chime SpotMe®

Chime SpotMe is an optional free service for existing Chime customers who want an overdraft feature on their Chime account. To be eligible for the service, you need to receive one deposit of at least $200 into your Chime Checking account every month. The deposit must be from your employer or another type of regular payer. A one-off payment doesn't qualify.
But once Chime analyzes your account history, direct deposit history, spending activity and other factors, your SpotMe limit could potentially be increased to a maximum of up to$200. But it doesn't cover non-debit card transactions, ACH transfers or Pay Anyone transfers. If you already have a Chime account, SpotMe can be a handy feature if you overspend occasionally.
  • Available in all states
Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by The Bancorp Bank, N.A. or Stride Bank, N.A., Members FDIC. Direct deposit: Early access to direct deposit funds depends on the timing of the submission of the payment file from the payer. We generally make these funds available on the day the payment file is received, which may be up to 2 days earlier than the scheduled payment date. SpotMe: Chime SpotMe is an optional, no fee service that requires a single deposit of $200 or more in qualifying direct deposits to the Chime Checking Account each at least once every 34 days. All qualifying members will be allowed to overdraw their account up to $20 on debit card purchases and cash withdrawals initially, but may be later eligible for a higher limit of up to $200 or more based on member’s Chime Account history, direct deposit frequency and amount, spending activity and other risk-based factors. Your limit will be displayed to you within the Chime mobile app. You will receive notice of any changes to your limit. Your limit may change at any time, at Chime’s discretion. Although there are no overdraft fees, there may be out-of-network or third party fees associated with ATM transactions. SpotMe won’t cover non-debit card transactions, including ACH transfers, Pay Anyone transfers, or Chime Checkbook transactions. See Terms and Conditions.
  • No fees or obligation to tip
  • Low monthly direct deposit requirement
  • Easy to enroll for overdraft service
  • SpotMe limits start at $20
  • SpotMe doesn't cover many types of transfers
  • Must be used with Chime checking account
Loan amount$20 - $200
Interest rate typeFixed
Loan TermN/A
Turnaround timeSame day

Alternative for building an investment portfolio: Albert


Albert is a banking app offering a range of features, including cash advances of up to $250 per pay period — with no mandatory repayment time frame or credit check. But same-day cash advance fees range from $0 to $6.99, depending on where you send the funds and if you have direct deposit set up.
In addition to cash advances, Albert has a financial advice feature called Genius. Genius can help advise you on stocks and themed ETFs, or you can let it build a custom portfolio based on your financial goals. But the service costs between $8 and $16 a month, and you must sign up for a free 30-day trial to get cash advances through Albert.
  • Available in all states
  • Offers a range of financial advice
  • Monthly fee not required for cash advances
  • No late fees or inactivity fees
  • Must sign up for a free trial of Genius
  • Same-day transfer fees are not stated
  • No phone-based customer support
Loan amountUp to $250
Interest rate typeFixed
Loan TermVaries
Turnaround time2 to 3 days

Alternative for payment flexibility: Brigit


Brigit is a cash advance app that offers up to $250 per pay cycle for a monthly fee of $9.99 — with no credit check required. It offers a range of features, including the ability to change your payment date, free overdraft protection, a credit-builder program and tools for tracking your bills and spending habits.
If you can't make your repayment on time, you can request a payment extension in the app — as long as you've had two consecutive on-time payments. You can store up to three payment extensions for later use and get more breathing room in your budget.
  • Available in all states
  • Store up to three payment extensions at a time
  • Credit-builder program included in monthly fee
  • Offers up to $1 million in identity-theft protection
  • High $9.99 monthly subscription fee
  • Not everyone will qualify for $250 advances
  • Some users report poor customer service
Loan amountUp to $250
Interest rate typeFixed
Loan TermVaries
Turnaround time1 to 3 days or same-day in some circumstances

Alternative for no monthly fees: MoneyLion

MoneyLion Instacash advances

MoneyLion is a banking and cash advance app that offers up to $1,000 before payday. Unlike some other apps, MoneyLion doesn't charge a monthly fee for standard cash advances and lets eligible borrowers increase the advance amount to $1,000 by opening a RoarMoney bank account. And there's no credit check required.
But if you need same-day advances, you'll pay a fee for each transfer. But as a banking app, MoneyLion offers other features users may find useful, including getting paid two days early, an investment account, a crypto trading feature and financial tracking tools. But some users have complained of app glitches.
  • Available in: Alabama, Arizona, California, Delaware, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin, Wyoming
  • Potentially borrow up to $1,000 or more
  • No fees and no obligation to tip
  • Spare change feature to help you save
  • Normal funding takes 1 to 2 days
  • Instant delivery costs between $1.99 and $8.99
  • A history of customer complaints
Loan amount$50 - $1,000
Interest rate typeFixed
Loan TermVaries
Turnaround time3 to 5 business days to external checking account, 12 to 48 hours to RoarMoney account

Alternative for building credit: Possible Finance

Possible Finance Mobile Installment Loans

Possible Finance is an online lender specializing in quick, no-credit-check installment loans. If you get an installment loan with Possible, you have up to two months to pay it back. And unlike other payday and installment lenders, Possible reports your payments to Experian and TransUnion to help build your credit.
But like Blue Trust, APRs can run high, reaching up to 460% in some cases. And while some customers report a credit score boost after taking out a Possible loan, others report taking out too many loans caused their score to decrease. Because cash apps are cheaper, Possible is best for emergency borrowing only when you need a longer repayment term.
  • Available in: Alabama, California, Delaware, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington
  • No credit check required
  • Offers longer repayment terms than cash apps
  • Reports activity to two of the three major credit bureaus
  • APRs can reach up to 460%
  • A history of negative customer reviews
  • More expensive than using a cash advance app
Loan amountUp to $500
Interest rate typeFixed
Loan Term2 to 8 weeks
Turnaround timeAs fast as 1 business day

Alternative for gig workers: Cash App Borrow

Cash App

Cash App Borrow is a pilot feature of Cash App available to select users. If you're chosen to participate in the program, you can borrow up to $200 at a time for a 5% financing fee. While not everyone is eligible for Borrow, Cash App states that it bases its selection on your state of residence, credit score, Cash App usage and whether you have a Cash App card.
Some users online have reported getting access to the Borrow feature after uploading funds and sending payments. Others have mentioned they got access to Borrow even though they don't get direct deposits from an employer. This suggests that Borrow could be a good option for people who don't get direct deposits — since most cash advance apps require this.
  • Available in all states
  • Credit check not required
  • Direct deposits may not be required
  • Having a job may not be required
  • Finance fee is 5% of amount borrowed
  • Limited to $200 per advance
  • Eligibility requirements are unclear
Loan amount$20 - $200
Interest rate typeFixed
Loan TermVaries
Turnaround time1-3 business days

Alternative for higher loan amounts: OppLoans

OppLoans Installment Loans

4.7 / 5 ★★★★★

Like Blue Trust, OppLoans specializes in personal loans for bad credit borrowers. But unlike Blue Trust, its APRs cap out at 160%. While this is still considered high, it's less than what you would pay with a Blue Trust loan. And funding is quick, too: you can even get same-day funding if your loan is approved before 12 p.m. CT.
Like Blue Trust, OppLoans offers higher loan amounts than cash advance apps. If eligible, you can borrow from $500 to $4,000 with OppLoans and pay your loan back over nine to 18 months in most states. There's no hard credit check to apply with OppLoans, and it reports your payments to the three major credit bureaus, which can help boost your credit.
  • Not available in: Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia
  • Higher borrowing amounts than a cash app
  • Reports to Equifax, Experian and TransUnion
  • No prepayment penalties
  • Bank account must be at least 90 days old
  • More expensive that using a cash app
  • Must receive income through direct deposit
Loan amount$500 - $4,000
Interest rate typeFixed
Loan Term9 to 18 months
Turnaround timeAs soon as the same business day.

How does Blue Trust Loans compare?

According to information from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), Blue Trust Loans is the tribal lending agency of Lac Courte Oreilles Financial Services, LLC, which is an arm and entity of the Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin.
In other words, it’s a federally-recognized American Indian Tribe and has governmental sovereign immunity. Because of this immunity, you’ll be limited in bringing any claims against the company if you run into problems with your loan. There is a current BBB alert for Blue Trust for this reason. See our Tribal Lending Guide to learn more about the risks of tribal loans.
Additionally, Blue Trust loans’ APRs can reach up to 841.45% — which is extremely costly compared to cash advance apps or personal loans with rates that are legally capped at 36%. Given its history with the BBB and high cost, we recommend looking elsewhere for a loan.


  • Current BBB alert
  • History of customer complaints
  • Excessively high APRs compare to other types of loans
  • Limited legal recourse in the event of problems


  • Direct lender
  • Available in most states

More alternatives to payday and installment loans

Payday and short-term installment loans like the ones offered by Blue Trust are considered predatory and come with sky-high interest rates.
Consider that:

  • A typical $375 payday loan comes with $520 in fees because of repeat borrowing.
  • The average APR on a payday loan can reach as high as 650% in states with no protections against predatory short-term lenders.
  • While payday loans are designed for one-time emergencies, about 70% of borrowers use them for recurring costs like utilities and bills.
  • Most payday loan borrowers stay in debt for at least 11 months.

On the other hand, cash advance apps don’t charge financing fees or interest on what you borrow, making them cheaper than installment loans.

Alternatives to cash advance apps

If you don’t qualify for a cash advance app because you don’t get regular deposits, here are more options to access quick cash for emergencies:

  • Credit card cash advance. If you have the credit to spare, credit card cash advances are a convenient way to take out cash at an ATM or bank counter. Cash advance fees are steep, so you’ll want to use them sparingly. Compare the best credit cards of 2023.
  • Personal loan. If you need more than $1,000, you may want to look into a personal loan. The Monevo connection service lets you search for lenders based on your credit score to narrow down the best offers available to you.
  • Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) app. While they don’t offer cash, BNPL apps let you purchase items you need today and pay them off later, which could be useful for bigger ticket items like appliances. Find the best BNPL apps offering low fees and interest.
  • CDFI loan. These are small-dollar, short-term loans at a lower cost than from a payday lender. You can find them at Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), but they can take up to a month to fund.
  • Employer advance. If you need funds before you get paid, your employer may be willing to loan you money from your next paycheck. Also, check if your employer partners with cash advance apps like B9 and Earnin, which let employees access their pay early.

For more options for accessing cash and getting low-income resources in your state — like cash, food and heating assistance — see our payday loan alternatives guide.

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