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Earnin App Review 2021. Is it Better Alternative to Payday Loan?

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Earnin Review

Earnin logo

Earnin app is a legitimate platform that can help you to cope with those financial strains between paydays. You can use the app to call funds to help you avoid overdraft charges or late fees.



Safe & Legit

Costs & Fees

Financial Tools

Ease of Use


  • Cash Emergencies – loans up to $500
  • Free with optional tip of up to $14 per withdrawal
  • Can help prevent overdrafts from your bank account
  • No interest & fast funding


  • Monitors your work hours
  • Links to your bank account

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What is Earnin?

The Earnin App is community-supported and aims to help people build an effective financial system. The app has been around since 2013 and provides users with access to money between paychecks and almost immediate cash to help avoid unnecessary bank fees or charges. 

Earnin has BBB accreditation and holds an A rating. It has a great reputation in the online community. The only negative Earnin app review comments appear to be related to updating problems when users change jobs or other profile information changes. However, many other users praise the flexible and handy service. 

How Does The Earnin App Work?

Earnin works with the community to provide financial help as you work. Many people rely on payday loans to avoid fees or charges when funds run low before payday.

Unfortunately, these types of loans attract a very high interest rate, creating more financial issues. Earnin is supported by the community, so there is no loan interest rate. You can support the platform by tipping a fair amount, essentially paying it forward to other members of the community.

During our Earnin app review, we discovered tips help to cover community fees and other platform expenses, so Earnin can help more members cash out and avoid hefty overdraft fees or payday loan charges.

Is Earnin Safe to Use?

The set up process for Earnin does require that you provide some very personal information. In addition to providing your bank account details, the app needs to track your earnings. This is done either by uploading timesheets or using the GPS in your phone to verify when you’re at work.

Since Earnin requires such personal financial information, it is important that you have confidence the platform is safe. As such our Earnin app review would not be complete without digging into the safety and security of this platform.

Earnin reassures members that it uses the latest encryption technology to protect your information. Additionally, Earnin will not sell any of your data.

In fact, Earnin states that security is the company’s top priority and the company will only use your information in strict accordance with the privacy policy

What Should You Know About Earnin?


Signing up for the Earnin App is relatively straightforward. Firstly, it requires that you download the app to your smartphone or mobile device. You will then need to sign up using your phone number or email address. Earnin will then require that you verify your email or phone number and the creation of a password. 

There is then a series of qualifying questions that include: 

  • The location of your employer
  • Your hours per pay period
  • Your pay period schedule 
  • Bank account details

Once Earnin confirms you meet the qualifications, you will see a prompt to connect your bank account and finalize the account sign up. However, it can take up to 72 hours to verify your information. If you do not hear from Earnin after three business days, you will need to reach out to the support team. 

The Earnin app allows you to make withdrawals of as much as $100 a day. The actually amount depends on the hours you’ve worked. You pay a “tip” on top of the amount you borrow to cover the service. This is just a couple of dollars up to a maximum of $15, which makes it cost effective when you compare it to the fees or charges that traditional payday loan companies impose. 

This flexibility makes Earnin ideal for those who need a small emergency fund or want to avoid an overdraft fee on their checking account. However, if you regularly spend more than your earnings, this may be putting a bandaid on a more serious financial problem. 

Fees & Interest

Earnin does not impose fees or interest charges. You can donate a “tip” for any amount, but you need to take care as regular tipping can add up. If you provide a $2 tip on your $20 withdrawal that is due in two weeks, it adds up to an APR of 260%.

This is comparable to payday lender rates. However, Earnin does cap tips at up to $15. So, if you use the service sparingly, Earnin can be far cheaper than taking out a payday loan or sending your current account into an unauthorized overdraft.

Withdrawal Limits

Earnin allows you the flexibility to borrow between paychecks, helping you to avoid overdraft fees on your checking account or other late charges. However, no financial institution will allow you to borrow an unlimited amount. The Earnin limits have a maximum of $100 in a single day, but there will also be a per pay period limit of up to $500. 

Your financial behavior and earnings will impact your specific withdrawal limit. If you continue to use the app properly and have good earnings, your withdrawal limit could increase over time. 

Another caveat is that Earnin is only available to salaried, on demand, or hourly employees. Remote workers and freelancers will not qualify. You also need to receive a direct deposit paycheck to use the app. 

When you need some money, Earnin will verify the hours you’ve worked in this paycheck period. If your request is on a weekday, you’ll receive the money the next day, but on weekends, it will be on the second business day.

When you receive your pay, Earnin will automatically deduct your the amount you owe from your paycheck. You can then add a tip to the withdrawal of $0 to $14. 

Additional Programs Available to Earnin Users

Balance Shield

If you’re struggling to keep track of bank account balances, there is a risk that you could accidentally overdraw, but this leads to hefty fees. Earnin features a Balance Shield that can protect you from this. You can link the balance shield to your checking account, and if your balance drops below $100, the app will automatically transfer a $100 loan. 

The Balance Shield operates on the basis of your daily and pay period maximum levels, and your available earnings added to your hour tracking. So, if you have a limit of $100 and you have already requested this, you are likely to be out of luck. However, this is a useful feature if your bank does not have such a safety feature. 

Cashback Rewards

When you create an Earnin account, there is the option to enroll your credit or debit card in the Cashback Rewards program. This will allow you to earn cash back when you make a Qualified Purchase from participating merchants.

The cash back percentage is set by the merchant, and there is a $250 limit of cashback for each transaction.

Health Aid

With Health Aid, you can submit eligible medical bills to check for lower payment options with your medical providers. The Health Aid team will review your submitted bill, conducting a Medical Bill Review.

You’ll receive a final report of any available options to lower your medical bills within two business days. Although this does not guarantee any savings, Earnin can help you to better gauge the available options.

Financial Calendar

This is a handy, in app calendar to track daily earnings, bill reminders and recent cash outs. This can help you to establish good practices to improve your financial health.

What are the Earnin App Pros & Cons?


  • Earnin does not mandate fees or hidden charges, making it far more appealing than a conventional payday loan.
  • You can pay what you think is fair for the service, with no specified minimums.
  • You can gain access to funds quickly when you need them.


  • The Earnin borrowing limits are lower than you may expect. Some Earnin app review comments highlight that many payday apps have higher borrowing limits.
  • In the modern economy of freelancers and gig workers, Earnin has restrictions that mean that not everyone is able to use it.
  • While Earnin assures of heavy encryption to ensure the safety of your data, the app does connect to your bank account. This means that you need to have a full understanding of what data the app is collecting and how Earnin stores it before signing up.

Earnin vs Payday Loans

Many of us are aware that payday loans can attract massive interest charges. In this regard, Earnin has the edge. There are no ongoing fees or interest charges. In fact, you can simply pay what you deem fair and reasonable for your loan.

The only potential negative when comparing payday loans with Earnin is the slightly intrusive nature of the platform. Earnin not only requires linking your bank account, but it tracks your working hours. This may involve sending in timesheets, linking your employer’s worksheet system or even using your phone’s GPS data to confirm if and when you’re working.

However, if you’re happy with Earnin monitoring your work situation, our Earnin app review concludes this is certainly a more financially viable alternative. The lending structure of Earnin means that you’re not likely to overextend yourself and wind up in a bigger financial hole as you could with payday loan lenders.

When to Use Earnin?

The Earnin app is a legit platform that is likely to work out far better than using a conventional payday loan provider. Earnin can help you to avoid bank fees or charges or help you to prevent overdue bills compromising your credit score. Paying an Earnin tip will be far better than getting stuck with an overdraft fee or being unable to refinance your car because your credit score has dropped. 

However, if using Earnin becomes a habit most pay periods, you need to take a serious look at your finances and consider how you could implement a budget or increase your earnings with a side gig. 

You can sign up with Earnin App here

Earnin FAQ

How To Contact Earnin App Customer Service?

There is a comprehensive FAQ page, but you can also contact the support team via social media or using the contact form. 

Is Earnin App Free?

Yes, there are no fees or charges, but you are encouraged to tip.

Can You Fill Earnin App Surveys with Mobile App?

Earnin is available for Android and iOS devices

Earnin App

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