Chase College Checking account review
Enjoy no monthly maintenance fees for up to five years while you’re in school, plus a $100 signup bonus.
finder.com’s rating: 3.2 / 5.0
Checking accounts provide easy access to your money when you need it for textbooks or dinner with friends. Students between the ages of 17 and 24 may want to consider the Chase College Checking account. There’s no monthly maintenance fee as long as you’re in school and get a signup bonus as a new customer. You won’t earn interest with this account, however, and Chase only has branches in 29 states around the country.
$6 per month
Minimum deposit to open
|Monthly fee||$6 per month|
|To waive the fee||Have any ONE of the following: |
• College enrollment for up to five years
• OR a direct deposit made to this account (Direct deposits can be an ACH credit, payroll, pension or government benefits such as Social Security)
• OR an average ending day balance of $5,000 or more in this account
|Minimum deposit to open||$0|
|Intro or bonus offer||New Chase customers can get a $100 signup bonus when they complete 10 qualifying transactions within 60 days of account opening. Offer expires 04/9/2020.|
|ATMs||16,000 Chase ATMs and nearly 4,900 branches nationwide|
|ATM transaction fee||$0|
|Out-of-network ATM fee||$2.50 in the US or $5 outside the US|
|Foreign transaction fee||3%|
|Nonsufficient funds fee||$34|
Peter Carleton is a writer that covers banking and investing, breaking down what you need to know about where you put your money. When Peter's not thinking about cutting-edge banking apps and robo-advisors, he runs a creative agency and spends his spare time cooking or reading.
The Chase College Checking account is for college students between the ages of 17 and 24. The account offers standard mobile banking features and no monthly maintenance fee as long as you’re actively enrolled in college.
If you plan to study abroad, note that there’s a 3% foreign transaction fee and any out-of-network international ATMs come with a $5 withdrawal fee.
What are the benefits of the Chase College Checking account?
As the top bank in the US, Chase offers the security, services and customer support that you’d expect. This account, geared for students, sports features like free online bill pay and account alerts.
- Visa debit card. Get a Visa debit card to use for purchases online and other places credit cards are accepted.
- Convenient deposits. Deposit money at branches, ATMs, by mail, online or through the bank’s mobile app using Chase QuickDeposit.
- Signup bonus. Get a $100 signup bonus as a new customer when you complete 10 qualifying transactions within 60 days of account opening.
- Chase mobile app. Offers easy, instant access to your account where you can monitor activity, send payments, set up bill pay, deposit checks and more.
- Text banking. Check account balances, view credit card bills and more — all from your phone.
- Mobile payments. Use QuickPay with Zelle through the Chase mobile app to make payments to anyone using just their email address or cell phone number.
Chase ATM network and fees
This account comes with a Visa debit card with access to the largest bank-owned ATM network, with over 16,000 across the country. While you won’t be charged fees at these locations, you will at non-Chase ATMs:
- Domestic ATM fees. You’ll be charged $2.50 in the US, Puerto Rico and US Virgin Islands per inquiry, transfer or withdrawal — not including fees from the ATM owner.
- International ATM fees. Look out for a $5 fee per withdrawal and a $2.50 fee per transfer or inquiry — not including fees from the ATM owner.
What should I look out for?
Despite multiple banking options and security features, watch out for Chase College Checking bank fees.
- Monthly service charge. This account has a monthly service fee of $6 that can be waived if:
- You’re between the ages of 17 and 24 and have proof that you’re a college student.
- A direct deposit is made each month.
- There’s an average ending daily balance of at least $5,000 in this account each month.
- Insufficient funds fee. You’re charged $34 for each debit card purchase that overdraws your account — with a maximum of three per day. However, this fee doesn’t apply if:
- Your account balance at the end of the business day is overdrawn by $5 or less.
- The transaction that overdraws your account was for $5 or less, even if your end-of-day balance is overdrawn.
- You made a withdrawal from an ATM.
- Extended overdraft fee. Look out for a $15 fee when your account is overdrawn for five or more business days in a row.
- Limited services. Although Chase has nearly 5,000 branches, it only operates in 28 states and Washington, DC.
If you prefer an interest-bearing checking account with no foreign transaction fee, you’ll want to keep looking. As always, compare your options when looking for a checking account.
Case study: Dawn’s experience
Chase branches are everywhere in major cities, and their in-person customer service has always been stellar. But calling customer service when you can’t get to a branch leaves a lot to be desired. Last time I needed a new debit card, it took me over four months to get one — the bank sent me a card in the mail with no PIN and refused to send a PIN or give me one over the phone. I couldn’t get a working card until I was able to visit a branch.
I moved to a city shortly after, so it made sense to keep my Chase card. But if I ever move back to an area with no local branches, I’ll switch banks to avoid hours on the phone getting transferred between customer service agents.
Where does Chase have branches?
- New Jersey
- New York
- Washington, DC
- West Virginia
Compare with other student checking accounts
How much do I need to open an account?
There’s no minimum deposit required to open this account and no monthly minimum balance.
How do I apply?
Opening a Chase College Checking account can be done online or at a branch.
Follow these steps for applying online:
1. Visit the Chase website and click Checking accounts.
2. Click Are you a college student?
3. Click Open account and fill in your personal information including your name, address and Social Security number.
4. Proceed through each step and enter all required information, then click Next.
5. Once your application is complete, you’ll need to fund the account.
6. After your initial deposit has been made, you can submit your application.
To qualify for the Chase College Checking account, you’ll need to:
- Be between the ages of 17 and 24.
- Be enrolled in a college or university.
- Have a Social Security number or passport for foreign students.
When applying for this checking account, be prepared to provide the following:
- Your name and contact information.
- Your date of birth, Social Security number or passport for foreign students.
- A government-issued ID.
- Proof of student status, including your acceptance letter, transcript or student ID.
- Your income information.
What other checking options does Chase offer?
You’ll find a few other checking accounts at Chase, including:
- Chase Total Checking. Chase’s most popular checking comes with a $12 monthly service fee that can be waived if you make at least $500 in direct deposits into this account each month or meet its minimum balance requirements.
- Chase Premier Plus Checking. This account earns interest at 0.01% APY and comes with four non-Chase ATM fee waivers each month. To avoid the $25 monthly maintenance fee, make sure to have an average beginning day balance of $15,000 between your linked checking, savings and other qualifying accounts.
- Chase Sapphire Checking. Chase’s premier checking account comes with a $25 monthly service fee that’s waived if you keep an average beginning day balance of $75,000 between your linked checking, savings and other qualifying accounts.
- Chase High School Checking. Designed for students aged 13 to 17, this account must be linked to a parent’s personal checking account, which in turn waives the $6 monthly service fee.
Frequently asked questions
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