A cash advance is a debit to the credit card account that results in you receiving actual cash or a cash equivalent transaction such as the purchase of gambling chips. For example, if you take out cash from an ATM and select ‘credit’ as the account type. It also includes various other types of transactions (for example, where a credit card is used to pay a bill at a bank branch or via an approved agent of the biller i.e. tertiary fees or utility bills). It’s important, however, to note a few key facts about cash advances.
Unlike your purchases, where you could get up to 44 or 55 interest-free days (depending on your credit card), you start paying interest from the moment you make the cash advance. Bear in mind that the interest is charged on a daily basis.
A cash advance will always attract interest, regardless of whether you have interest free periods on your credit card account. With cash advances it’s important to know that interest will generally be charged from the date of the cash advance and will continue to be charged on the outstanding cash advances balance until you pay off that transaction balance (including any previously billed interest, fees and charges) in full. You may avoid being charged interest on a cash advance if your credit card account is in credit (by at least the amount of the cash advance) at the time of the cash advance. Your account may be in credit if, for example, you have previously paid more off your account than you owe.
You may also have to pay a Cash Advance Fee (usually the greater of a percentage of the cash advance amount or a minimum fee), in addition to the interest charges. This fee will be added to your cash advances balance, which means you will also be paying interest on this.
Different interest rate than on purchases
If you make a credit card cash advance, you will be charged interest at a higher rate than if you made a purchase. You should understand what interest rates apply to your product before making a cash advance.