Chime is a financial technology company that serves as an alternative to traditional banks. It only operates an online financial app and offers a simple checking account with no fees and a single savings account. Chime is probably best known for its fast direct deposits, so it might be a good fit if that’s how you get paid. You’ll get your direct-deposited paycheck up to two days earlier1 than with other financial options.
If Chime’s perks are not enough, it also lets you earn extra cash for recommending friends. In these challenging economic times, free money is especially nice. And if you can help a friend by turning them on to a banking product you love, that’s even better.
Chime’s referral bonus offer makes it easy for you to introduce friends and family to its banking services and score up to $1,000 in free cash2. Plus, if you are a user of online rewards sites, you can earn bonus points for joining Chime. Read on for all the details.
Chime Friend Referrals: $100 Bonus
This Chime promotion is beneficial to you and your friends because you both get $100 if you refer someone who ends up opening a new account2. The amount changes frequently so if you’re a Chime user, be sure to check your settings to see what’s on offer. You can earn up to $1,000 in referral bonuses per calendar year for as long as the offer is available2.
To take advantage of the Chime offer, you’ll need to have a Chime Checking account. Once you’re set up, follow these steps to begin the referral process:
- Log in to your online account or open the mobile app.
- Select “Settings” in the upper left corner of the window.
- Click or tap on “Invite Friends.”
- Create a message or greeting.
- Choose friends from your contacts.
- Tap or click on “Send.”
You can also share your customized invitation through social media or on your blog by copying the referral link. On the same Invite Friends page, navigate to the top-right corner and tap on “Share.” Copy the link and paste it to share. If your friend opens an account and receives a direct deposit of $200 or more within 45 days of opening the account, you’ll each get $100. Here are a few more details on the promo:
- Cash value: $100
- Minimum deposit to qualify: $200
- Expiration date: None
- How to get it: Refer a friend using the customized link mentioned above. If your friend opens an account and receives one direct deposit of at least $200 within 45 days, you’ll each receive a $100 bonus. No Chime coupon codes are necessary.
- When you’ll get it: After your friend receives the first direct deposit of $200
- Terms and conditions: Your friend must use the referral link that identifies you as the referrer in order for both of you to receive the Chime bonuses.
- Monthly fees: None
- Promotion page: Chime referral bonus offer
Chime and MyPoints Offer: 51,000 Points ($320 Cash Value)
MyPoints lets you earn points on all your shopping at thousands of top retailers like Target and Walmart. Users of the site can also claim a bonus of 51,000 points when they sign up for Chime, download the app and receive a direct deposit of a paycheck within 30 days of sign-up3.
- Cash value: $320
- Minimum deposit to qualify: $200
- Expiration date: May 31
- How to get it: Log in to MyPoints and sign up for Chime through the offer page using the email address associated with your MyPoints account. Then, download the Chime app, set up direct deposit and receive a direct deposit of a paycheck of at least $200 from an employer, payroll or benefits provider within 30 days of signup.
- When you’ll get it: Up to 60 days after receiving the qualifying direct deposit
- Terms and conditions: You must be a new Chime member, and the qualifying direct deposit must be made by your employer, payroll provider or benefits payer by ACH deposit. Bank ACH transfers, peer-to-peer payments, mobile check deposits and cash deposits are some examples of transactions that would not qualify for the bonus, and the offer cannot be combined with any other enrollment bonuses, including referral bonuses. See the promotion page for details.
- Monthly fees: None
- Promotion page: MyPoints Chime sign-up offer
Opening a Chime Account
Chime makes opening an account simple. Besides needing an internet connection, mobile phone or computer, you’ll need to be at least 18 years old and a U.S. resident. You can apply through the website or by downloading the mobile banking app for iPhone or Android. Chime claims the process only takes a couple of minutes. Here’s what you need to do:
Step by Step
- Fill out your information on the enrollment page.
- Enter your name.
- Enter your Social Security number.
- Add an email address.
- You’ll be asked if you’d like to open an optional linked savings account now or later.
- Create a password to log in to your Chime account.
- Wait for Chime to verify your information.
- Once approved, set up your paycheck as a direct deposit by giving your employer your Chime account number and routing number.
- Wait to receive a Chime debit Visa card to make purchases and ATM withdrawals.
Is Chime Right for You?
If you do most of your banking online, Chime makes a lot of sense. For one thing, you’ll save money on bank fees.
You’ll also be able to deposit checks, pay most of your bills and transfer money between accounts through the mobile banking app. The referral bonus adds even more incentive because you can get paid for inviting friends to Chime.
If you need to write checks or regularly make cash deposits3, however, Chime probably wouldn’t be the right bank for you. The bank doesn’t offer paper checks. Chime offers no-fee cash deposits at Walgreens. Deposits made at other locations may be subject to a transaction fee charged by that retailer4.
Please Note: The retailer that receives your cash will be responsible for transferring the funds for deposit into your Chime Checking Account. Cash deposit fees may apply if using a retailer other than Walgreens.
Check back each month for updates and new promotions as they are available. If the bonus offers above don’t seem like a good fit for you, there are also several other banks that are currently offering promotions.
Julia Gordon contributed to the reporting for this article.
This article has been updated with additional reporting since its original publication.
Information on promotions is accurate as of May 2, 2022. Additional requirements may apply. Offers and terms are subject to change. This article was updated on May 2, 2022, to include additional disclosures from Chime.
Editorial note: This content is not provided by Chime. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by Chime.
Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank, N.A., Members FDIC. The Chime Visa® Debit Card is issued by The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc. and may be used everywhere Visa debit cards are accepted. Please see back of your Card for its issuing bank.
1 Early 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.
2 In order for the referring Chime member (“Referrer”) to qualify and receive the [$xx.xx] monetary referral reward and [$xx.xx] temporary SpotMe Base Limit increase referral reward, and for the referred person (“Referred”) to qualify and receive the [$xx.xx] monetary referral reward, all of the following conditions must be satisfied: (1) Referrer is part of the SpotMe Referral Incentive referral reward campaign; (2) Referred has not previously opened an Account (“Account”); (3) Referred opened a new Account between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2022; (4) Referred opened the new Account using the Referrer’s unique referral link; and (5) Referred received in the new Account a qualifying direct deposit of $200.00 or more within 45 calendar days of opening. A qualifying direct deposit is a direct deposit from your employer, payroll provider, gig economy payer, or benefits payer by Automated Clearing House (ACH) deposit OR Original Credit Transaction (OCT). Bank ACH transfers, Pay Friends transfers, verification or trial deposits from financial institutions, peer to peer transfers from services such as PayPal, Cash App, or Venmo, mobile check deposits, cash loads or deposits, one-time direct deposits, such as tax refunds and other similar transactions, and any deposit to which Chime deems to not be a qualifying direct deposit are not qualifying direct deposits. Members may earn no more than $50.00 in SpotMe Base Limit referral increase and may earn no more than $1,000.00 in monetary referral rewards per calendar year (January 1, 2022 – December 31, 2022 and January 1, 2023 – December 31, 2023). No member’s SpotMe limit may exceed $200. Any Referrer SpotMe Base limit increase referral reward will expire 184 calendar days from the Referred receiving a qualifying direct deposit. If an eligible Referrer loses Base Limit eligibility, and the Referred completes the above conditions, the Referrer will receive the [$xx.xx] temporary SpotMe limit increase referral reward only upon regaining Base Limit eligibility. Referral rewards will generally be provided within two (2) business days after all the above conditions are met. The Referrer’s account must be in good standing in order to receive the referral reward. Referred individuals acknowledge that payment of any referral reward may result in the Referrer’s knowledge of the Refered’s establishment of a new Account or enrollment in a product. Chime reserves the right to cancel or modify the terms of any referral reward offer or terminate a member’s eligibility at any time with or without prior notice. Credits of $10 or more will be reported on tax form 1099-INT for new members (Referred). Credits of $600 or more will be reported on tax form 1099-MISC for referring Chime members (Referrers). Banking services are provided by The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank, N.A., Members FDIC.
3 See https://www.mypoints.com/discover-offer?id=12332 for details.
4 The retailer that receives your cash will be responsible for transfering the funds for deposit into your Chime Checking Account. Cash deposit fees may apply if using a retailer other than Walgreens.