How to Get Cash from a Credit Card Without a Cash Advance

There are a few different ways to tap your credit card for cash. One is to earn cash back rewards. But you can also borrow cash on a credit card, although you’ll usually have to pay both a fee and interest on the balance

Sometimes you can’t use a credit card, like when you need to pay rent, hire a handyman or make purchases at some small merchants. If you don’t have access to a debit card or you have too little cash in your account to cover your expenses, you may be able to borrow on your credit card to withdraw cash from an ATM or bank teller. Some cards allow you to transfer money into a bank account using a balance transfer check.

Another way to get cash from a credit card is to earn it through cash back rewards, when offered.

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Make purchases for friends

Do you have a friend who’s about to make a big pur

Do you have a friend who’s about to make a big purchase with cash? If so, you can ask your friend if you can buy the item on your credit card and take the cash. If your friend is agreeable to this, you’ll get all the cash you need with no advance or ATM fees.

Plus, if you have a 0% APR introductory rate card, you can repay that $1,000 slowly without paying any interest.

Some additional benefits to you and your friend are as follows:

  • Credit card reward points: If your credit card offers rewards, you will earn the points based on these credit card purchases. You can use these credit card rewards to get free or discounted gifts or statement credits.

  • Extended warranty: Some credit cards automatically place a free extended warranty on big-ticket items. These warranties are typically about a year beyond the manufacturer’s warranty.

  • Additional discounts: If you have a store credit card account for the retailer your friend is planning to buy the item from, you may qualify for a discount by using the card. You can either pass this discount on to your friend or keep the extra cash for yourself.

There are a couple of downsides to this option. The most obvious is if you don’t have enough available credit to complete the transaction. You can also end up significantly increasing your credit utilization ratio — your credit card balance relative to your credit limit — which can lower your credit score.


What is the maximum you can withdraw through a credit card cash advance?

Cash advances are typically capped at a percentage of your card’s credit limit. For example, if your credit limit is $15,000 and the card caps your cash advance limit at 30%, your maximum cash advance will be $4,500.

Cash back cards

Enjoy the convenience of earning cash back with Chase Freedom® or Chase Freedom Unlimited®. Compare our cash back credit cards to find your best option.

How Much Does It Cost to Withdraw Cash From a Credit Card?

Cash advances aren't free. There are several costs to be aware of when taking one.

First, there's the cash advance fee. This is a fee the credit card company charges simply for the convenience of withdrawing cash against your cash advance limit. It may be either a flat fee, such as $5 to $10, or a percentage of the advance of amount, whichever is greater. The amount can vary from card to card.

You could also pay additional fees if you’re withdrawing cash from a credit card at an ATM or bank branch. An ATM surcharge may apply, or you might have to pay a teller fee for this convenience.

The second part of the cash advance cost equation is the annual percentage rate (APR). In most cases, the cash advance APR is higher than the regular APR for purchases or balance transfers. And, as mentioned above, interest starts accruing immediately.

That's important to keep in mind if you're looking for a low-cost way to access cash. Compared to a short-term personal loan, for example, a cash advance could end up carrying a much higher interest rate.

Important Unlike purchases, there is no grace period for credit card cash advances. Interest begins accumulating right away.

Using Prepaid Debit Cards

As another option, if you want the ability to get cash advances off a card, you can get a prepaid debit card. Prepaid cards are not secured credit cards, they differ in a lot of different ways. Most importantly, prepaid cards do not report on your credit, secured credit cards can. The good news, you can get a prepaid card for a few dollars. You’ll then be able to load money and use it just like a debit card. Some scenarios may warrant it, this route is still cheaper than a cash advance.

Best Cash Back Credit Cards

Are Cash Advances a Bad Idea?

Many personal finance experts caution that cash advances from your credit card can be a bad idea and suggest to only use them in an emergency situation. Cash advances from your credit card can be a really expensive short-term loan as the current average interest rate for cash advances is 23.7%, according to

Notably, credit reports do not indicate when a cash advance is taken against a credit card account; so cash advances do not directly affect your credit history (as long as you pay them back in a timely manner).

How to Take Out a Cash Advance

Withdrawing money from an ATM using a credit card is a simple process. It’s like withdrawing money from an ATM using a debit card with only a few slight differences.

  1. Check the latest account statement to see how much money is available to withdraw. This can vary based on the card’s spending limit or the card may have a different cash advance limit.
  2. Go to an ATM and insert the credit card.
  3. Enter the credit card PIN (call the number on the back of the card to find out the credit card PIN or to set one up).
  4. Select the appropriate options if offered: “cash withdrawal” or “cash advance.”
  5. If asked to select between “credit” or “debit,” select “credit.”
  6. Enter the amount to withdraw.
  7. Accept any fees like ATM transaction fees and cash advance fees.
  8. Complete the transaction and take out cash.

Know your available credit for cash advances limit:

Look at your most recent credit card statement and find Available Credit for Cash Advances. Keep in mind, sometimes ATMs have additional limits.

Personal loans

With a favorable credit report and score, you may be able to secure a small personal loan to cover your immediate need for cash. Many financial institutions offer small loans, from bank branches to credit unions to online lenders. Many times, they can deposit funds into your bank account the next business day.

Request A PIN Number

If you don’t have a PIN for your credit card, might as well request one. Like we said earlier, you’ll need to request one by calling the credit card issuer or by calling them directly. Either way, you’ll have to wait 7-10 days for them to mail it to you as they won’t give you a PIN over the phone or online. It’s possible that some creditors will give you a temporary PIN to use. Just make sure your store is safe so no one else can get a hold of it.

How do you get a cash advance from a credit card?

You can get a cash advance from a credit card by using an ATM with your PIN or visiting a bank and requesting a cash advance. You'll need to present your physical card at the bank, and they will likely request identification from you as well to confirm the card is yours.

Drawbacks of a credit card cash advance

Credit card cash advances have three significant drawbacks:

  • They include fees. These fees are typically around 5% of the transaction amount with a minimum of $10.
  • They have high interest rates. Most credit cards have a separate APR (interest rate) specifically for cash advances. The cash advance APR is almost always higher than the purchase APR, with many cards charging about 25%.
  • Interest charges start immediately. While purchases have a grace period before accruing interest, cash advances don't. The card company will start charging you interest right away.

To put this all into perspective, let's break down the typical costs of a $1,000 cash advance. The fee would cost you $50 right off the bat. There's also the immediate interest charges. With a 25% APR, one month would add about $21 in interest.

Learn more: How Does Credit Card Interest Work?

That's a total of $71 in fees and interest, assuming you pay off the cash advance in a month. If you need more time, that cash advance APR will keep costing you more.

Cash advances may be your best option in emergencies. They're certainly better than borrowing money from a predatory lender, such as a payday lender that charges extremely high interest rates.

But before you go with this option, it's worth seeing if any alternatives work for your situation. There are apps that offer a free cash advance with no credit check. Or, you could potentially get money from your credit card without paying cash advance fees and interest.

Still have questions?

Some other questions we've answered:

How To Get Cash From a Credit Card

Your options will likely vary depending on your credit card company and issuer, but the most common methods for getting a cash advance are either through a check or at an ATM. Your credit card issuer might have sent you a check. If that’s the case, you’ll fill out the amount you need, up to the limit of your available credit, and deposit it into your checking account. If you’ll be getting the money at an ATM, you’ll need a PIN — just as you would with your debit card. Your issuer can assist you in setting up a PIN if you don’t have one, or you might be able to set one up by signing in to your credit card account online.

Get Credit Card Perks

Once you have your PIN in hand, you can head to the ATM to get your cash advance. The process is similar to what you do when you withdraw cash using the debit card linked to your bank account.

How To Get a Cash Advance at an ATM

To get a cash advance, you’ll do the following:

  1. Insert your credit card into the ATM.
  2. Enter your PIN.
  3. Choose the proper action. Options will be listed as “cash withdrawal,” “cash advance” or something similar.
  4. Select credit instead of debit, if asked.
  5. Enter the amount you want to withdraw.
  6. Accept any fees listed to finish your transaction.

Getting a cash advance with a credit card

If you need cash now, you may be able to use your credit card to borrow cash with a cash advance. Cash advances work a little differently than using your credit card for purchases, though.

  • You may have a lower cash advance limit than your card’s overall credit limit.
  • There’s almost always a cash advance fee — for example, 3% or 5% of the cash advance amount, with a $5 or $10 minimum.
  • Your card could have a higher cash advance APR than purchase APR. Also, your cash advance may start to accrue interest immediately.

You might be able to use your credit card to get a cash advance at an ATM, although you may have to create a PIN for your credit card first and the ATM operator may charge you a fee for the cash advance. Alternatively, you may be able to get the advance by going into a bank or credit union branch. The amount you withdraw will be added to your credit card’s cash advance balance.

Because of cash advance fees and interests, a credit card cash advance should be a last resort when you need cash quickly and don’t have access to your checking account.

How to use a credit card at an ATM to withdraw money

If you need to take money out of a credit card at an ATM, here’s how to request a cash advance:

  • Insert your credit card into an ATM
  • Enter your credit card PIN
  • Select the “cash withdrawal” or “cash advance” option
  • Select the “credit” option, if necessary (you may be asked to choose between checking, debit or credit)
  • Enter the amount of cash you’d like to withdraw
  • Acknowledge that you accept any fees associated with the transaction
  • Complete the transaction and collect your cash

Using a credit card at an ATM is a lot like using a debit card—just follow the instructions to withdraw cash, acknowledge that you accept the fees and charges and collect your money.

Shift Your Bills Around 

If you can use your credit card for something you would normally pay for with cash (or with money in your bank account), go ahead and free up that cash. This could be particularly helpful if you get a new credit card with an introductory no-interest offer that buys you time to catch up without accruing interest.

Some billers and landlords charge a convenience fee when you pay a bill with a credit card, so make sure to compare your overall costs before choosing the most affordable way for you to get cash. Ideally, the fee is less than the cash advance fee you would otherwise pay, but even if it isn’t, if you’re not hit with a higher cash advance APR, it may still be worth it.  

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