Dave App 2023 Review: Cash Advances
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Pros & Cons
- Advances up to $500.
- Does not overdraw accounts.
- Caps tips at 25% of advance.
- Allows users to extend repayment date.
- Potentially high fees for same-day funding.
- Mandatory $1 subscription fee.
- Users must have a Dave checking account.
Compare to Other Lenders
Full Review of Dave
The Dave app’s ExtraCash feature provides users an advance on their paycheck to cover small emergencies, like a car repair or broken appliance, or to bridge an income gap. Unlike some of its competitors, Dave provides advances to part-time or temporary workers who don’t receive regular paychecks.
Though users can get advances up to $500 — larger than some competitors’ offerings — Dave’s fast funding fees can be high compared to other apps. Users must also open a checking account with Dave in order to use ExtraCash. Compare Dave to other cash advance apps, and consider alternatives before you borrow.
» MORE: Compare cash advance apps
Table of contents
Dave app advance amounts, fees and repayment terms
Up to $500.
Withdrawn from your bank account on the date Dave determines to be your next payday.
Time to fund without express fee
2 to 3 business days.
Time to fund with express fee
Up to an hour.
- What to know about optional tips
Regulators like the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau don’t classify tips as interest, but some consumer advocates argue they should because asking a user to decide how much to tip doesn’t give them a fair chance to compare the cost with other borrowing options. NerdWallet recommends not volunteering a tip for a cash advance.
Should you use the Dave app’s ExtraCash feature?
When used occasionally, Dave can be useful if you:
Receive consistent income — even if you don’t get paid on a regular schedule.
Have a small emergency expense.
Can use your next paycheck to cover the money owed to the app as well as your other monthly expenses.
Have a checking account that receives deposits.
Dave might not be a good solution if you:
Regularly spend more than you earn.
Want same-day cash that comes with low fees.
Though cash advances from an app are generally cheaper than payday loans, they may encourage users to rely on borrowed money to bridge income gaps, which can lead to a cycle of borrowing. In 2021, the Financial Health Network released a study that included multiple years of usage data and found that app users frequently take advances consecutively — behavior that is consistent with payday loan borrowing.
Is the Dave app legit?
Dave is a real company based in Los Angeles. It has offered cash advances since its founding in 2017. The app has 4.4 stars across more than 450,000 reviews on Google Play and 4.8 stars across more than 600,000 reviews on the Apple App Store.
Recent customer complaints to the Better Business Bureau focus on unauthorized credits and debits to their accounts. Recent complaints with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau focus on account management.
How to qualify for Dave’s ExtraCash advance
The company says it tries to make advances accessible to anyone, including those living paycheck to paycheck. Dave doesn’t require regular paychecks via direct deposit to qualify.
Like other cash advance apps, the Dave app reviews users’ checking accounts for spending habits and income history to determine whether they qualify for an advance and how much. The app also reviews returning customers’ repayment history to decide how much they can borrow.
To get an ExtraCash advance from Dave, you need:
At least three recurring bank account deposits.
Monthly deposits amounting to at least $1,000.
A minimum history of 60 days with your bank account.
To pass an identity verification and fraud detection.
A Social Security number.
To be at least 18.
To live in the United States.
For returning users, the app also considers advance repayment history when deciding whether to provide another advance and what the amount should be.
How Dave’s cash advances work
Here are the steps to get an ExtraCash advance:
Create a profile in the Dave app.
Link an external checking account.
Open a Dave checking account and an ExtraCash account, where the advance comes from.
Request an advance and see what you’re approved for.
The ExtraCash account balance starts at $0. When you take an advance, the approved amount transfers from your ExtraCash account, making the balance negative, to your checking account. The account balance remains negative until you repay the advance.
Add a tip or fast funding fee. The fee amount depends on the size of your advance.
On your repayment date, Dave brings the balance to $0 by withdrawing money from the checking account where your paychecks are deposited.
Can I change my Dave ExtraCash due date?
Yes. Users can request an extension of up to 30 days, according to Dave. Extensions are approved on a case-by-case basis, but the company says users must request an extension at least two days before their due date.
Will Dave’s ExtraCash cause an overdraft fee?
The Dave app will never take more money than is in a user’s account, the company says. Instead, if your balance is lower than the amount owed on your due date the company will withdraw whatever amount is available. The app will do this up to twice a day until you’ve repaid the advance.
For example, if you owe $100 but only have $20 in your account on your due date, Dave will withdraw $20 and continue to debit available money from the account until the $100 is paid.
How do I contact Dave’s customer service?
You can contact Dave’s customer service by phone, email, a contact form on the website or the app’s chat feature. The company also replies to users who reach out on Twitter.
Other Dave app features
The Dave Spending account is a standard checking account with no minimum balance requirements and no ATM, late or overdraft fees. No-fee checking accounts are somewhat common, and some even pay interest.
The account may be useful for those who want to get an advance because it’s up to a few dollars cheaper to get funds instantly deposited into a Dave Spending account than an external account.
Dave offers a savings account, called a Goals account, wherein users can transfer money from an external bank account or a Dave checking account to fund a goal, such as a vacation or future emergency.
While this feature may be helpful, an interest-bearing savings account through your bank is likely a better way to meet your savings goals or prepare for an emergency.
Help making extra cash
The app’s Side Hustle feature helps users find side jobs to earn extra income. Dave users can find and apply for a job in the app.
Compare Dave to other cash advance apps
Dave’s advance amounts are high compared to other cash advance apps — a max advance of $200 or $250 is more common. Funding time is slightly longer than others', but if you pay a fast funding fee, the difference between Dave and others is negligible.
The process for getting a Dave advance is also slightly more involved. You must have an ExtraCash account, which goes negative with each advance, rather than Dave sending you the money directly. You also have to open a Dave checking account, whether you plan to use it or not, which is a larger commitment than other apps require.
Lastly, Dave’s fast funding fees can be high compared to other apps, but the subscription fee is low among apps that charge them.
Dave vs. other cash advance apps
Speed without paying a fee
1 to 3 days.
$9.99 monthly subscription fee.
Up to $100 per day, $750 per pay period.
1 to 3 days.
$8 monthly subscription fee unless you opt out.
Up to $500.
2 to 3 days.
$1 monthly membership fee.
12 hours to 5 days.
Approval takes up to 3 days.
Funding takes minutes.
3 business days.
NerdWallet reviews and rates cash advance products from financial companies that provide cash advance apps. We collect over 24 data points from each company, verify the information with company representatives and compare the app with others that seek the same customer or offer a similar cash advance product. NerdWallet writers and editors conduct a full fact check and update annually, but also make updates throughout the year as necessary.
The maximum allowable rating for cash advance apps that we review is four stars. Our star ratings award points to cash advance apps that offer consumer-friendly features, including: caps on voluntary tips, protections from overdraft fees caused by app withdrawals, low cost of borrowing and an assessment of the user’s finances before providing an advance. The system also rewards points for features that a consumer seeking an advance would find useful, such as: fast funding without a fee, allowing users to borrow less than they were approved for and customer ratings. Additional points are awarded to apps that provide pathways to budgeting and saving, which are features that can help prevent a user from habitually reborrowing. We weigh these factors based on our assessment of which are the most important for consumers and how they impact consumers’ experiences.