Chase College Checking account review + $100 bonus | finder.com

Chase College Checking account review

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Chase College Checking
  • $100 signup bonus
  • No monthly service fees
  • Thousands of ATMs & branches
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Enjoy no monthly maintenance fees for up to five years while you’re in school, plus a $100 signup bonus.

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.

Monthly fee$6 per month
To waive the feeHave 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$25
Intro or bonus offerNew Chase customers can get a $100 signup bonus when they enroll in paperless statements and complete 10 qualifying transactions within 60 days of account opening.
ATMs16,000 Chase ATMs and nearly 5,000 branches nationwide
ATM transaction fee$0
Out-of-network ATM fee$2.50 in the US or $5 outside the US
Foreign transaction fee3%
Overdraft fee$34
Nonsufficient funds fee$34
Deposit methodsCash by teller
Cash by ATM
Check by teller
Check by ATM
Mobile/remote check deposit
Bank transfer
Wire transfer
Direct deposit
Chase Banking Chase Banking

$100 signup bonus when you open a new account

Offer valid for Chase College Checking when you enroll in paperless statements and complete 10 qualifying transactions within 60 days of account opening.

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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 enroll in paperless statements and 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 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.

  • Minimum opening deposit. This account requires a $25 deposit to open.
  • 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.

Case study: Leah’s experience

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Dawn Daniels
Associate Editor

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?

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Hawaii
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Nevada
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • Washington, DC
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin

Compare with other checking accounts

Name Product APY ATMs Fee
2.00% on balances of $10,000+ or deposit $1+ each calendar month into any Aspiration banking or investment account
Free to use anywhere worldwide
$0
A high-interest account that operates like a checking account with no monthly service fees, free access to every ATM in the world and deposits insured by the FDIC.
Access to 16,000 ATMs and nearly 5,000 branches nationwide
$12/month
(can be waived)
Get a $200 bonus when you open a new Chase Total Checking account and set up direct deposit within 60 days of opening your account. Chase's simplest checking account is easy to use and gives you access to 16,000 ATMs and nearly 5,000 branches.
16,000 Chase ATMs and nearly 5,000 branches
$15/month
(can be waived)
If you’re new to Chase, get $200 when you open this account and complete qualifying activities. It boasts convenient features to help small and growing businesses reach their goals.
You’ll get fee-free access to over 56,000 ATMs around the world
$0
A full-service account with convenient, surcharge-free access to two massive ATM networks.
1,000 fee-free ATMs across the country
$0
Pay a $0 monthly service charge and get free access to BBVA Compass ATMs.
0.01% on balances of $5+
Surcharge-free HSBC ATMs nationally and internationally, plus up to four rebates a month for using non-HSBC ATMs in all US states except New York
$25/month
(can be waived)
Get a $350 Welcome Deposit for eligible new customers who open an HSBC Advance Checking account with qualifying activities by June 2, 2019

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How much do I need to open an account?

This account only requires a $25 minimum deposit to open, and there’s no monthly minimum balance requirement.

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.
Chase College Checking account screenshot

Eligibility

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.
  • Have a $25 opening deposit.

Required information

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 account requires a $25 minimum opening deposit. It 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. You’ll need to deposit at least $25 to open this account, which 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 requires a $100 opening deposit and 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.

Read about the Chase Total Business Checking account

Bottom line

The Chase College Checking account is a great way to manage your finances while you’re still in school. It offers great features and has minimal fees and deposit requirements, meaning you’ll hold on to more of your money. However, the account doesn’t offer interest, so if you’re looking for your money to grow while you focus on your studies, you might be better off with a different checking or savings account from Chase.

As always, compare your other checking account options to find the best one for your individual needs.

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