A car breakdown, an unexpected medical bill, and a broken appliance. We all know how these frustrating life events are and they always seem to crop up at the worst possible time. When life throws us unwelcome curveballs, many of us don’t have cash on hand to pay our way out of the situation.
All too often, the only option is pulling out the credit card, taking out personal loans, or approaching a payday loan provider.
Unfortunately, these options come with consequences that can linger for months, even years. They include massive interest rates, overdraft fees, strict repayment terms, and a barren bank account.
Luckily, thanks to advances in technology and the innovation of alternative service providers, you now have other options the next time you find yourself in a tight spot. And even better, these alternatives are literally at your fingertips – with just a few clicks on your smartphone.
But before we get into the good stuff, let’s spend a moment understanding the money app marketplace and what to consider when considering this product.
Instant cash apps are simply what they sound like – apps that you can load onto your smartphone or device to access, send and receive money. The specifics vary from app to app, but you can usually add funds to your app account using a debit card linked to your existing bank account. Some providers also provide their own debit or prepaid card as an option for loading accessible earned wages from your employer.
Typically, once you’ve installed the app, you create a free account. You’ll generally need to create a username and password or provide your email address and phone number. Once you’re all set up, you can start using the service to instantly send and receive money or make payments for goods and services.
The way the sending and receiving of payment works will depend on the app you’re using.
When using your instant cash app, carefully ensure that you enter the recipients’ information properly. If you make a typo, you could end up sending money to the wrong party, in which case you may have no way to retrieve it. Some providers will allow you to reverse an incorrect payment within a specified timeframe. But if that avenue proves fruitless, you’ll be dependent on the goodwill of the recipient to do the right thing and make a refund.
Also, be mindful that there are many scammers out there – do your homework and research who the best and most reputable app providers are in the marketplace. You don’t want to find yourself falling into the clutches of a predatory payday loan provider that’s simply masquerading in another dress!
The market and use cases for instant payment apps are growing exponentially in every sector, and for a good reason.
The first, most obvious reasons are speed and convenience. But beyond that, most instant cash apps are a safe way to pay for goods and services and exchange money with friends, family, or co-workers.
That’s because these apps (or reputable ones) will ensure that all data in transit is encrypted, and they’ll be PCI-DSS level 1 certified. Many also offer fraud protection for unauthorized charges.
Yes. Most instant cash apps will pay out very quickly and won’t require a pre-approval of your credit score, nor will they charge you any interest.
That being said, there are drawbacks with some products. For example, some have threshold payment limits, and others come with steep membership fees.
From employers’ perspective, offering employees access to a reputable instant cash app to access wages that they’ve earned but not yet collected is a powerful drawcard in a competitive marketplace. Not only does it allow them to put their employees firmly in control of their own finances, but it also helps with employee retention and engagement.
As an employee, having access to your money instantly once you’ve earned it is not only convenient, but it also helps when unexpected costs arise and money is short.
Instead of having to wait for your next payday for money to land in your checking account, take out personal loans, or borrow money from family or friends, you can pay your own way, using your own money.
In addition to accessing your earned wages before payday, Payactiv offers financial advice and counseling.
The app also has a platform specifically designed to serve as much more than a payday loan alternative, offering capabilities to pay bills and get prescription discounts.
Additionally, Payactiv has an optional prepaid card available to users, so you can access your money quickly and easily – all with the added bonus of fraud protection.
There’s no charge for on-demand pay if you set up direct deposit to the card. Without direct deposit, you pay $1 for one day of use of all services.
Here’s a more detailed overview of the features and benefits of the Payactiv solution:
Our smart budgeting technology does the work, so you stay on track with spending and saving goals.
Get fast access to your money when you deposit to your Payactiv Visa® Card*, use-everywhere Visa® debit cards are accepted, pay bills directly from the app, and locate surcharge-free withdrawals at 37,000 in-network MoneyPass® ATMs. With direct deposit:
You can send and receive money between you and other Payactiv Visa Card cardholders.
Learn more about how Payactiv can help you.
* The Payactiv Visa Prepaid Card is issued by Central Bank of Kansas City, Member FDIC, pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc. Certain fees, terms, and conditions are associated with the approval, maintenance, and use of the Card. You should consult your Cardholder Agreement and the Fee Schedule at payactiv.com/card411. If you have questions regarding the Card or such fees, terms, and conditions, you can contact us toll free at 1 (877) 747-5862, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
1 In order for you to be paid early, your payroll or benefits payment provider must submit the deposit early. It is important to note that your payroll or benefits payment provider may not submit the deposit or payment early each payment period. Be sure to ask your payroll or benefits payment provider when they submit your deposit information to the bank for processing. Early deposit of funds will begin upon the 2nd qualifying deposit. A qualifying deposit is defined as a direct deposit greater than $5.00 received from the same payer.
2 Visa’s Zero Liability Policy does not apply to certain commercial card and anonymous prepaid card transactions or transactions not processed by Visa. Cardholders must use care in protecting their card and notify their issuing financial institution immediately of any unauthorized use. Contact your issuer for more detail.
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google LLC.
Apple and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT PROCEDURES FOR OPENING A NEW CARD ACCOUNT: To help the government fight the funding of terrorism and money laundering activities, federal law requires all financial institutions to obtain, verify, and record information that identifies each person who opens a Card Account. What this means for you: When you open a Card Account, we will ask for your name, address, date of birth, and other information that will allow us to identify you. We may also ask to see a copy of your driver’s license or other identifying documents.
In fact, a study found that only one in five (21%) employees would describe...
*The Payactiv Visa Prepaid Card is issued by Central Bank of Kansas City, Member FDIC, pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc. Certain fees, terms, and conditions are associated with the approval, maintenance, and use of the Card. You should consult your Cardholder Agreement and the Fee Schedule at payactiv.com/card411. If you have questions regarding the Card or such fees, terms, and conditions, you can contact us toll-free at 877-747-5862, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
1 Many (but not all) employers, government benefits providers, and other originators send direct deposits early with an effective of 1-2 days later. Beginning with your second direct deposit of at least $5 from the same source, Central Bank of Kansas City (CBKC) will post the funds to your Payactiv Visa Card when we receive it, rather than on the effective date. This may result in your having access to the funds sooner. The date CBKC receives your direct deposit and the effective date are controlled by the originator.