Chime Review: A Fee-Free Way to Bank with Early Payday^

Banking is a necessity and can be complicated with all the hidden fees, overdraft fees, and fine print.

Traditional banks took $11 Billion in overdraft fees alone in 2019.#

Skip all of the unnecessary fees, plus get early payday^ and consider Chime instead.

What is Chime and How Does it Work?

Chime is an FDIC-insured online account with:

  • No monthly bank fees~
  • Early payday – you can get your paycheck up to 2 days early with direct deposit^
  • Automatic savings tools
  • Competitive high yield savings at 0.50% APY1 which is 8x2 the national average!
  • Over 60,000+ fee-free ATMs with Moneypass® and Visa® Plus Alliance (find them at CVS, Walgreens, 7-Eleven, and more!)
  • A Chime Visa® Debit Card with instant transaction notifications & the ability to block the card when needed via the app

Bonus for Tax season: Get your federal tax refund up to 3 days5 earlier when you file directly with the IRS and direct deposit with Chime!

Their mission revolves around protecting their customers by giving them peace of mind and never profiting from customers’ misfortune or mistakes (hence, no monthly fees~).

They also have a highly rated mobile app with over 300,000+ five-stars reviews where you can easily track your daily transactions, balance, and savings.

Chime also offers mobile payments so if you need to divvy up the money for food, etc. you can send money for free to your family and friends through Chime even if they don’t have the app yet!

With no monthly fees, no minimum balance requirement, no overdraft fees, and no foreign transaction fees, Chime makes it really easy to switch over.

Cost
Free
Founded
2013
Headquarters
San Francisco, CA
Pros
  • Get your paycheck via direct deposit up to 2 days earlier^
  • No monthly bank fees~ (including overdraft!)
  • Competitive high yield savings at 0.50% APY1 (8x2 the national average!)
  • 38,000 fee-free~ ATMs nationwide
  • Automatic savings tools
Cons
  • No personal checks but Chime can send on your behalf
  • Cash deposits can only be made at Green Dot deposit locations

Get Your Paycheck Up to 2 Days Early with Direct Deposit^

One of Chime’s most loved features is that you can get your paycheck up to 2 days early when you set up direct deposit^ with Chime. That’s up to two more days to think about how you want to spend, save, or pay off the bills!

“Chime is amazing! The SpotMe* feature has helped me with paying my insurance bill that could not be postponed. Without this feature my insurance would have been canceled. In addition, using this I was not charged excessive overdraft fees that most banks charge. Thank you Chime for this feature! 💚💚” – Real member, sponsored content

So for instance, if your payday usually falls on a Friday, you could get paid on Wednesday instead. Direct deposit is just faster and you don’t have to worry about paychecks getting lost in the mail.

Tired of Overdraft Fees?

Avoid the hassle of being at the checkout and realizing you don’t have enough money to swipe on your debit card. Instead of putting your item(s) back, Chime’s SpotMe feature will spot eligible members up to $200* so you can continue with your purchase.

At Chime, they do things differently. Instead of charging you with an overdraft fee, they allow you to overdraft up to $200 with no fees.*

With SpotMe, when your next deposit arrives into your Chime online Spending Account, they will apply it to your negative balance, making this a simple and hands-off process.

Grow Your Savings with 0.50% APY1 and Built-In Features

If you aren’t great at saving money but know you need to get your act together, Chime makes that easy too. They have automatic savings tools that allow you to be smart with your money with minimal effort.

  1. High Yield Savings: Their newest feature gives other banks a run for their money as they now offer a competitive 0.50% APY1 for your savings. This will let you earn more money on your money as that’s more than 8X2 the national average!
  2. Save when you spend: This feature rounds up each debit card transaction to the nearest dollar and automatically deposits it to your savings account. The spare change adds up!
  3. Automatic Transfer: Save your paycheck on autopilot because you can automatically save 10%4 of your paycheck in your Chime Savings Account with a single setting.
Chime

Banking made awesome.

Banking made awesome.

No monthly fees~
No minimum balance, monthly fees, or foreign transaction fees. Plus fee-free ATMs~.
Get spotted up to $100*
Tired of overdraft fees? Get fee-free overdraft up to $100* with Chime’s SpotMe
High yield savings at 0.50% APY1
Earn more money on your money – 8x2 the national average!

How Chime Makes Money

Traditional banks make money by charging their customers overdraft fees, out-of-network ATM fees, monthly maintenance fees, transfer fees, and account maintenance fees. As mentioned before, this added up to $11 billion in overdraft fees# in 2019 alone!

Chime doesn’t profit off of your account(s) in the way of fees, instead, they make money from Visa®. They do this by collecting an interchange fee from merchants, which occurs when you use your Chime Visa® Debit Card. A portion of this fee gets paid to Chime, and those interchange fees add up and enable Chime to run smoothly without needing to charge their customers.

Can You Trust Chime?

Yes, Chime is FDIC insured up to $250,000.

Chime also has 128-bit AES encryption, access control, and security processes to ensure your money is always safe. They will send a text whenever your debit card is used to ensure there is no fraudulent spending. Debit cards are also protected by Visa’s Zero Liability Policy, which states that you won’t be held responsible for unauthorized charges made on your account.

You’ll also have the ability to block your card and order a replacement debit card from within the Chime app too.

Is Chime for You?

If you’re sick of bank fees~ and complicated processes to open and close accounts, you should consider signing up with Chime for free.

Their easy and automatic savings tools also benefit anyone that’s not great at saving, plus their competitive 0.50% APY1 puts your money in a high yield savings account. You won’t get charged a fee for overdrafting with their SpotMe* feature either. And getting paid up to 2 days earlier^ puts you ahead too!

Signing up for an account takes only a few minutes and has zero impact on your credit score.

Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank, N.A., Members FDIC.

# June 2020 Overdraft Fees Report: https://www.responsiblelending.org/sites/default/files/nodes/files/research-publication/crl-overdraft-covid19-jun2019.pdf

* SpotMe won’t cover non-debit card purchases, including ATM withdrawals, ACH Transfers, Pay Friends transfers, or Chime Checkbook transactions. Chime SpotMe is an optional, no-fee service that requires $500 in qualifying direct deposits to the Chime Spending Account each month. All qualifying members will be allowed to overdraw their account up to $20 on debit card purchases initially, but maybe later eligible for a higher limit of up to $200 or more based on member’s Chime Account history, direct deposit frequency and amount, spending activity and other risk-based factors. Your limit will be displayed to you within the Chime mobile app. You will receive notice of any changes to your limit. Your limit may change at any time, at Chime’s discretion. SpotMe won’t cover non-debit card purchases, including ATM withdrawals, ACH transfers, Pay Friends transfers, or Chime Checkbook transactions. See terms and conditions.

˜ Out-of-Network cash withdrawal fees apply. Third-party and cash deposit fees may apply
ˆEarly access to direct deposit funds depends on the timing of the submission of the payment file from the payer. We generally make these funds available on the day the payment file is received, which may be up to 2 days earlier than the scheduled payment date

1The Annual Percentage Yield (“APY”) for the Chime Savings Account is variable and may change at any time. The disclosed APY is effective as of November 1, 2021. No minimum balance required. Must have $0.01 in savings to earn interest.

2The average national savings account interest rate of 0.06% is determined by FDIC as of November 1, 2021 based on a simple average of rates paid (uses annual percentage yield) by all insured depository institutions and branches for which data are available. Visit https://www.fdic.gov/regulations/resources/rates/ to learn more.

4 Save When I Get Paid automatically transfers 10% of your direct deposits of $500 or more from your Spending Account into your savings account.

5Early access to direct deposit funds depends on the timing of the submission of the payment file from the payer. These funds are generally made available on the day the payment file is received, which may be up to 2 days earlier than the scheduled payment date. Federal tax payments may be received from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) three days before the scheduled payment date, meaning tax refunds potentially could be made available up to 3 days early.

You must notify your financial institution immediately of any unauthorized use. For specific restrictions, limitations and other details, please consult your issuer

The Smart Wallet is a paid Affiliate/partner of Chime