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Chase — America’s largest bank — offers a wide range of accounts and services. Customers have access to one of the country’s largest branch networks and 16,000 ATMs nationwide.
The bank stands out for its highly rated mobile app and features that meet the needs of its digitally savvy clientele. In Bankrate’s latest review of its deposit products, Chase’s checking accounts received a higher score than the rest of its account offerings for consumers, with 4 out of 5 stars for its checking accounts. The bank’s overall score is 3.4 out of 5 stars.
Chase checking accounts
In addition to its business accounts and private client banking, Chase offers several consumer checking options.
Customers who open a Chase Total Checking account pay a lower monthly fee than on other Chase checking accounts, though with fewer benefits than the other checking account options. The monthly fee is waived when the account meets certain criteria, such as a monthly electronic deposit of at least $500.
Premier Plus account holders have a higher monthly maintenance fee, but can use out-of-network ATMs four times per statement period without getting hit with a fee from the bank (although there could be a fee from the ATM owner or network). Like the Total Checking account, the monthly fee can be waived when the account meets certain criteria. The account also earns interest.
With a Sapphire checking account, you’ll earn interest, pay no fee for using a non-Chase ATM (unless the owner or network charges a fee) and have access to a dedicated 24/7 customer service line. The monthly fee can be waived but the minimum balance requirement is much steeper than the Total Checking and Premier Plus accounts.
Chase also offers Secure Banking, geared toward consumers outside of the traditional banking system who don’t require checks and want an account that charges no overdraft fees.
|Account name||APY||Minimum deposit||Monthly fee|
|Chase Total Checking||None||$0||$12/$0*|
|Chase Premier Plus Checking||0.01%||$0||$25/$0*|
|Chase Sapphire Checking||0.01%||$0||$25/$0*|
|Chase Secure Banking||None||$0||$4.95|
Note: The annual percentage yields (APYs) shown are as of Jan. 25, 2022, and may vary by region for some products.
*Monthly fees are waived when accounts meet certain balance requirements or either criteria.
In addition to its standard consumer checking accounts, Chase offers a high school checking option for students ages 13-17 and a college checking option for those 17-24. The high school checking option has no monthly fee, while the college checking option has no monthly fee for up to five years, after which a $6 monthly fee goes into effect.
Chase checking account fees
Most of Chase’s consumer checking accounts have monthly fees, but they’re fairly easy to waive. With the Total Checking account, for example, there’s a $12 monthly service fee that can be waived by having:
- Monthly direct deposits that total at least $500
- A beginning daily account balance of at least $1,500
- An average beginning day balance of at least $5,000 combined with any qualifying linked accounts
For the Chase Premier Plus Checking accounts, the monthly fee can be waived by either having an average beginning day balance of $15,000 or linking a qualifying Chase first mortgage with automatic payments from the account. The monthly fee is also waived for military members. For Chase Sapphire Checking, the monthly fee can be avoided by maintaining an average beginning day balance of $75,000 or more in the account or in combination with eligible linked accounts.
The ATM fee for using a non-Chase ATM in the U.S is $2.50 per transaction. For international withdrawals, the fee is $5, and for international transfers or inquiries, the ATM fee is $2.50. Premier Plus Checking customers get four ATM fees for non-Chase Bank ATMs waived per month. Sapphire Checking customers pay no fees for ATM use worldwide, including non-Chase ATMs.
Chase charges a $34 overdraft fee per item, about equal to the national average. At most, customers can get hit with three overdraft fees per day. Chase’s Secure Banking account charges no overdraft fees, since overdraft services are not available for this account and will be declined. The only fee Secure Banking account holders are responsible for paying is a monthly fee of $4.95.
Other fees may apply in certain cases for other accounts. The fee for sending wire transfers domestically, for instance, is $35, though the fee is waived with Premier Plus Checking and Sapphire Checking accounts. The cost for incoming wire transfers, if you are not a Premier Plus Checking or Sapphire Checking customer, is $15 per transfer. No fee applies if the transfer was sent online, through the Chase mobile app or with the help of a Chase banker).
Chase checking account promotions and bonuses
Chase is one of several banks that frequently offers cash bonuses to new deposit account holders. The bank currently offers a checking account bonus for new customers who open a Chase Total Checking account.
Accounts opened online or in a branch are eligible. To qualify, open a new Chase Total Checking account using a coupon code, which can be emailed or applied directly through the Chase site, and then set up direct deposit within 90 days. The bonus should arrive within 15 days of meeting these requirements.
Customers who’ve had a Chase checking account within the past 90 days or had an account closed with a negative balance within the past three years are ineligible. The bank limits customers to one bonus per account, and customers can only earn a bonus for opening a new account once every two years from the sign-up date. The promotion expires April 20, 2022.
Alternatives to Chase checking accounts
Consumers questioning whether Chase is the right bank for them have many options. Other big banks offer similar accounts.
If a higher yield is more important to you than access to branches, you might be better off going with an online or challenger bank. Some of the best interest checking accounts earn more than 1 percent APY.
A credit union could also be worth considering if you meet membership requirements. Two credit unions made the cut on Bankrate’s list of the best banks for checking accounts.