I use payday loans of £100 maybe four times a year when things are tight. Wonga are probably the most expensive but this month they had a 50% off deal so £100 for about a fortnight will cost me £8.
It's always worth checking out Martin Lewis's site http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/
Loads of info there about the best loan deals, cr cards, getting refunds etc. He says he is writing a guide about payday loans but I don't see it published yet.
There was a very interesting article about the resurgence in the pawnbroking business
in my Sunday paper magazine. Nowadays there are specialist outfits who deal in jewellry, fine art and so on. The thing is the max rate is 60% so it's a far better option if you need the dosh for a few months or you find you have to extend it beyond when you hoped to reclaim.
They will advance up to 40% of the item's value. But I guess that you might get nowhere near what you think it's worth in many cases.
Payday loans are absolutely fine if you are 100% certain you can repay quickly and you only need a relatively small amount for a few days or a few weeks only. Otherwise you are on shit street.