Other Information About Using Your Link Card

To check your Link account balance

  • Look on your last receipt, if you have it.
  • Go to the Illinois Link Card Website.
  • Call the Illinois Link Help Line 1-800-678-LINK (5465) or 1-877-765-3459 (TTY)
  • Get your balance at a store that accepts the Link card. Some stores will give you the balance at their service desk without making a purchase.
  • Do a balance inquiry at an ATM (for cash account balance only). You cannot get your SNAP Benefit(formerly known as food stamps) balance at an ATM, only your cash account balance. Remember, you may be charged a fee, even if you are just inquiring about your balance. 

To review recent purchases and withdrawals

  • Current cardholders may login to the Illinois Link Card Website to check recent purchases and withdrawals.  Monthly transactions are available for the past 12 months and may be looked up by month. 
  • Current cardholders may hear their last 10 purchases and withdrawals by calling the Illinois Link Help Line 1-800-678-LINK (5465) or 1-877-765-3459 (TTY).

Locations that accept the Illinois Link card

  • In Illinois, there are over 9,000 retailers that accept the Illinois Link card.  Look for a display of the Illinois Link card, or a sign that says "Illinois Link accepted here."
  • The Illinois Link card can be used in all 50 states at most grocery stores and ATMs. Look for a display that the store accepts Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards.
  • Current Cardholders may access their SNAP (food stamp) and cash benefits at Point of Sale (POS) terminals at most grocery stores. 
  • Current Cardholders may access their cash benefits at Automated Teller Machines (ATMs).  You cannot access SNAP benefits (food stamps) or get a Link SNAP account balance at an ATM.

The 4 top reasons that a Link card does not work

  • The card is damaged (the stripe is de-magnetized, scratched).  You need to get a replacement card.
  • The card has been de-activated because it was reported lost or stolen.  You need to get a new card.
  • The wrong PIN was entered 4 times in a row.
  • You picked the wrong benefits type on the POS terminal.  For example, you tried to spend cash benefits, when you only receive SNAP benefits (food stamps.)  Or, you tried to spend SNAP benefits, and you only receive cash.

Problems that could stop a purchase or cash withdrawal from being approved

  • There are not enough benefits in the account to cover the purchase or cash withdrawal.  Be sure to keep track of your Link account balance and check it before shopping.
  • The benefits are not available yet.  Be sure to keep track of the date that your benefits should be available for use.
  • The benefits are no longer available on the Link card because there were no purchases or withdrawals for one year.