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LAST UPDATED: November 30th, 2022

Chime's mission is to make financial peace of mind a reality for everyone. To make that a reality, Chime is changing how people think about bankinga. Instead of confusing terms and complicated jargon to confuse consumers (and profit off their misfortune and mistakes), Chime makes managing your money easy. 

When you open a Chime bank account, you get a Visa Debit Card®, Spending Account, and (if you want) a Savings Account. All of which can easily be managed through your smartphone. 

The Chime mobile banking app is available on both Android and iOS.

aChime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by, and debit card issued by, The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank, N.A.; Members FDIC.

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The Good

  • Setting Up an Account
  • No Hidden Fees˜
  • Automatic Savings Program
  • Get Paid up to Two Days Earlyˆ
  • 24/7 Banking

Setting Up an Account

It's straightforward to set up an account with Chime. Applying for an account is completely free and only takes a few minutes. Plus, Chime does not pull your credit, so you don't have to worry about your credit score taking a hit. 

Just be sure to have your social security number and home address ready to open an account. 

No Hidden Fees˜

Chime is all about making banking affordable and straightforward. That's why Chime offers online banking with no hidden fees˜. You don't need to worry about paying to open an account as there is no opening deposit or minimum balance required. You also don't need to worry about overdraft fees, ATM fees, international transaction fees, or card replacement fees˜. 

In fact, Chime does not charge an overdraft fee but allows you to overdraft on debit card purchases with no fees˜ when you qualify for Chime's SpotMe*.

Users who receive direct deposits of at least $500 each month can enroll in Chime's SpotMe* service. It is an optional service that instead of charging you an overdraft fee, Chime will allow you to overdraft up to $200* with no fees˜.

If you lose your debit card, Chime will replace it at no extra cost.

Chime does charge a fee ($2.50) if you get cash from an over the counter withdrawal or an out-of-network ATM. Avoiding this fee is relatively simple as all you need to do is check the Chime mobile app and search for a fee-free ATM near you.

Automatic Savings Program

Chime's Savings Account is entirely optional but definitely worth looking into — you will need to have a Spending Account to open a Chime Savings Account. This account offers a 0.50% annual percentage yield (APY)¹ as of December 9, 2020. Just like Chime's Spending Account, there are no monthly fees ˜and no minimum balance. Additionally, there is no cap on the amount of interest you can earn, so even having a couple of bucks in this account is worthwhile. 

But that's not the only way you can save. Chime offers two additional (and optional) programs to help build your savings. 

The first program is Save When You Spend. This feature allows you to save a little each time you make a purchase. 

Whenever you use your Chime Debit card at the store, Chime rounds your transaction up to the nearest dollar and transfers the difference into your Savings Account. For example, if you spend $47.55 at your local grocery store, Chime will move 45 cents from your Spending Account to the Savings Account. Although this isn't the fastest way to build up your savings, every penny counts.

The second feature is Save When I Get Paid. This feature allows you to set up a recurring transfer every time your direct deposit paycheck of $500 or more comes in. You can have Chime automatically transfer 10 percent from your paycheck ² into your savings account. 

Get Paid up to Two Days Early

Another of Chime's unique features is Early Direct Deposit. When you send your direct deposit to your Online Spending Account, Chime will give you access to the funds up to two days earlyˆ — meaning you'll get paid as soon as the money is available. 

24/7 Banking

Chime was designed to be used primarily through the mobile app. You can easily view your account, check balances, transfer money, and disable transactions. You can even deposit a check into your Spending Account. The Chime debit card works anywhere that Visa is accepted, and you can even add the card to your Apple Pay or Google Pay mobile wallet. 

This online platform makes it super easy and convenient to bank anywhere you go. 


The Bad

  • Not Available to All
  • Inactive Accounts

Not Available to All

Currently, Chime is only available to U.S. citizens 18 years and older. 

While Chime's credit and debit cards work worldwide, the company only offers accounts to members who have a valid SSN and live in the United States.

Inactive Accounts

Chime Savings Accounts with a $0 balance or no customer-initiated activity for nine continuous months may be subject to closure. All the money that was in your savings account will then be transferred to your Spending account. However, if the account is closed before the end of the statement cycle, any accrued interest for that cycle is forfeited.

If you want to open another savings account, you will have to wait 90 days.

Although closing inactive accounts is nothing new, most banks will wait at least 12–24 months before closing an account. So Chime's nine-month timeframe is a bit on the shorter side. 

On the bright side, Chime's no fee approach comes in handy here. Most banks have a dormant account fee that ranges anywhere from $5 to $10 per month. That's not the case with Chime.


The Bottom Line

Chime charges very few fees and doesn't try to take advantage of consumers with confusing policies and long-winded contracts.

You don't need to worry about signup fees, overdraft fees, card replacement fees, or monthly service fees ˜. The company's savings programs are designed to help you save each time you make a purchase or deposit money, make a great choice if you want to save up for a rainy day. 

Unfortunately, Chime is only available to U.S. citizens who are 18 years or older. There is no indication as to whether or not that will change. 

¹ APY—Annual Percentage Yield. Effective December 9, 2020 the interest rate will be 0.50%. These interest rates are variable and may change at our discretion at any time. No minimum balance required. Must have $0.01 in savings to earn interest.

² Round Ups automatically round up debit card purchases to the nearest dollar and transfers the round up from your Chime Spending Account to into your savings account. Save When I Get Paid automatically transfers 10% of your direct deposits of $500 or more into your savings account.

*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 may be 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

^ Early access to direct deposit funds depends on the timing of the employer's submission of their payroll file. We generally make payroll funds available on the day that the payroll file is received, which may be up to 2 days earlier than the employer's scheduled payment date.

˜ Out-of-Network cash withdrawal fees apply. Third-party and cash deposit fees may apply.

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Sarah Kate Philipsburg, PA

I have a 2% APY savings account with them and a "credit builder" card. I always paid cash for everything and in my late 20's, never had a credit card. Despite being higher income, my nonexistent credit score caused me to be rejected from countless cards I applied to. Chime told me I would need to setup an account and deposit my paycheck from a W-2 job in order to be approved for the credit builder card. This is how you provide proof that you have a steady and sufficient income. They said 1099-K payments (from freelance work) won't count. I'm both a freelancer and have a W-2 job and first setup the freelance income to deposit into the account and was instantly approved. This confused me because they originally told me the 1099 wouldn't count, but I was just happy to finally be approved and start building my credit score. I later also added my W-2 income because the 2% high yield savings account is amazing! My credit union only offered a 0.45% APY. Chime has helped me earn more in interest and start my credit score and increase it. I wish I would have known about it sooner! I definitely recommend Chime if you're like myself and just want to build your credit score, are starting from scratch and have no credit score or just want a high yield savings account and don't care about having a brick and mortar bank where we can go see someone in person to talk to someone face to face. The chat bot they use has answered my questions perfectly. I never had the need to reach their human support team. Chime's app is very straightforward and convenient. I have no complaints here.

1 year ago Edited December 1, 2022