At a Glance

In times of financial need, having access to quick cash can be a lifesaver. If you’re a Discover cardholder, you may have wondered about the possibility of getting a cash advance using your card. This article will guide you through the process of obtaining a Discover cash advance, including the steps involved, fees, considerations, and alternatives. We’ll also address important questions about how a cash advance could impact your credit score. So, if you’re considering this financial option, read on to make an informed decision.

In this article, you’ll learn:

What is a cash advance?

A cash advance is a convenient feature offered by many credit card issuers, including Discover. It allows you to withdraw cash from your credit card’s available credit line, typically at an ATM or a bank branch. However, it’s important to understand that a cash advance is not the same as a regular credit card purchase. Cash advances often come with distinct terms and conditions, and they can also be costly since they often have fees and interest accruing immediately.

How to get a cash advance with a Discover card?

Discover offers several methods for obtaining a cash advance. Let’s explore each of them in detail:

1. Through a bank branch or ATM

One of the most straightforward ways to get a Discover cash advance is by visiting a bank branch or an ATM. To do this, you’ll need your Discover credit card and a Personal Identification Number (PIN) assigned by Discover. You can typically obtain a PIN by calling Discover’s customer service.

Once you have your PIN, follow these steps:

  • Locate a bank branch or ATM that accepts Discover cards.
  • Insert your card.
  • Enter your PIN.
  • Select the cash advance option.
  • Choose the amount you want to withdraw.
  • Follow any additional on-screen prompts.
  • Collect your cash and the transaction receipt.

2. Online direct deposit

Discover also allows you to request a cash advance online and have the funds deposited directly into your bank account. To use this method, follow these steps:

  • Log in to your Discover account.
  • Find the cash advance option and select it.
  • Provide your bank account information, including the routing number and account number.
  • Specify the amount you want to withdraw.
  • Confirm the transaction and review the terms.

Once approved, the funds will be deposited into your bank account, typically within 1-3 business days.

3. Convenience check

Discover may send you convenience checks that you can use to access your cash advance. These checks work similarly to regular checks but draw funds from your credit line. Be cautious when using them, as they may come with fees and high-interest rates.

Things to consider before getting a cash advance

Before you decide to take a cash advance from your Discover card, it’s crucial to be aware of the potential drawbacks and costs associated with this financial move. Consider the following factors:

1. Cash advance fee

Discover charges a cash advance fee for each transaction. This fee is typically a percentage of the amount you withdraw and may vary depending on your specific card terms. Be sure to review your card’s terms and conditions to understand the fee structure.

2. Higher interest rate

Cash advances often come with a higher interest rate compared to regular credit card purchases. Interest starts accruing immediately, so it’s essential to pay off the advance as quickly as possible to minimize interest charges.

3. Foreign transaction fee

If you’re traveling internationally and need a cash advance, be aware that Discover may impose foreign transaction fees. These fees can add to the overall cost of your cash advance, so plan accordingly.

4. Repayment management

Managing the repayment of your cash advance is crucial. Set a repayment plan to pay it off promptly, as carrying a balance can lead to significant interest charges.

5. Availability of emergency fund

Consider whether a cash advance is the best option for your financial situation. If possible, explore other sources of funds, such as an emergency savings account, before resorting to a cash advance.

Alternatives to cash advance

Taking a cash advance from your credit card is not the only option when you need quick funds. Consider these alternatives:

1. Personal loan

A personal loan may offer lower interest rates and more favorable terms than a cash advance. Check with your bank or a reputable online lender for loan options.

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2. Borrowing from friends or family

If possible, borrow money from a trusted family member or friend. This may be a cost-effective and flexible way to obtain the funds you need.

3. Using a credit card

Instead of a cash advance, consider using your credit card for purchases. However, just make sure to pay off the balance in full by the due date to avoid interest charges.

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4. Payment app

Payment apps like PayPal and Venmo allow you to send and receive money instantly. If you have a balance in your app, you can transfer it to your bank account.

Should you take a Discover cash advance?

The decision to take a Discover cash advance should be carefully considered. It’s important to evaluate your financial situation, needs, and available alternatives. Cash advances can get you cash quickly, but they can be expensive, and their associated fees and interest rates can add up quickly. Only consider a cash advance when it’s necessary and all other options have been exhausted.

Will taking a Discover cash advance hurt your credit score?

A Discover cash advance won’t directly impact your credit score like a missed payment or high credit card utilization might. However, it can indirectly affect your score if it leads to a higher credit card balance and an inability to make timely payments. To maintain a healthy credit score, it’s essential to repay the cash advance promptly and avoid accumulating excessive debt.


The time it takes to receive a Discover cash advance can vary, depending on the method you choose. If you opt for online direct deposit, it typically takes one to three business days for the funds to appear in your bank account. At a bank branch or ATM, you’ll get the cash immediately.

To find out the exact cash advance limit on your Discover card, you should contact Discover’s customer service or refer to your credit card statement. Be cautious when considering a cash advance, as you should avoid exceeding this limit.

Paying off a cash advance on your Discover card is crucial to avoid excessive interest charges. Since cash advances start accruing interest immediately, it’s wise to repay them within days instead of weeks. Review your credit card statement for specific details.

Discover provides an ATM locator service on its website to help you find ATMs where you can withdraw cash using your Discover card. The exact amount you can withdraw from an ATM may vary depending on the ATM operator’s policies and any limits set by Discover. You can use your Discover card at ATMs to access funds immediately.

To use your Discover cash advance at an ATM, you’ll need your Discover credit card and the Personal Identification Number (PIN) assigned by Discover. Follow these steps:

  1. Locate a compatible ATM.
  2. Insert your card.
  3. Enter your PIN.
  4. Select the cash advance option.
  5. Choose the amount you want to withdraw.
  6. Follow any additional on-screen instructions.
  7. Collect your cash and the transaction receipt.

You can then use the funds as needed.