Chime Banking Review: A Detailed Overview

By J.R. Duren
HighYa Staff
Updated on: Jun 6, 2019

What Is Chime Banking?

Chime Bank is an online bank that offers checking and savings accounts that don’t charge fees.

The bank was founded in 2013, according to its LinkedIn profile, under the leadership of co-founders Chris Britt and Ryan King. Britt is the company’s current CEO, while King is Chime’s CTO.

Britt has a lot of experience working in the credit card and prepaid card industry. He was chief product officer and a senior vice president at prepaid card company Green Dot Corporation, as well as a Senior Product Leader at Visa.

King has a lot of experience working IT in Silicon Valley – he was CTO and Vice President of Comcast Silicon Valley from May 2011 to November 2012, according to his LinkedIn profile.

The bank has grown in popularity as Millennials have shunned big banks in search of smaller, online banks who don’t charge fees and function through app-based banking.

“It is an upstart bank account that pitches itself as being built for a more technologically savvy-generation,” a Jan. 2016 Fortune article said. “Unlike big banks, Chime was created during the smartphone era and, therefore, features an app that is more than just a way for customers to review their bank accounts.”

Chime certainly has, from our perspective, brand recognition and relevancy, but what exactly do they offer? In our review, we’ll discuss how the bank works, the fees it charges and what customers are saying about their Chime experience.

How Chime Works

Chime offers the basics you’d get with a traditional banking experience: checking, savings, and an app. However, as you’ll read, these features have nuances that separate them from big banks.

Chime Checking

Chime’s checking accounts are called “Spending” accounts and are purely online. There are no Chime brick-and-mortar stores.

At the time of publishing, Chime offered four ways to deposit money into your account: Direct Deposit, ATM deposits, and bank transfers.

Direct Deposit is pretty standard among banks, but Chime says that you might be able to receive your paycheck up to two days early.

Chime gives you a Visa debit card with which you can pay for stuff like groceries or bills, but you can also use it to deposit cash to your Chime account via Green Dot ATMs. If you remember from our introduction, Green Dot is where Chime’s CEO used to work.

According to Chime’s website, you may have to pay fees to do a transaction at a Green Dot ATM.

Chime says that you can deposit money from any of your existing bank accounts into your Chime account for free. However, Chime limits these transactions to $200 a day and $1,000 per month.

You also have the ability to make instant transfers to fellow Chime members via the app’s “Pay Friends” feature.

Also, you have the ability to deposit checks by using their photo deposit feature.

Pro tip: At the time of publishing, Chime Bank did not offer joint spending accounts.

Chime Savings Account

Chime’s savings account is one in which you deposit money with what’s known as a “round-up.” If your grocery bill, for example, comes out to $51.63, then Chime automatically deposits $0.37 (the “round-up” to the next dollar).

This is nothing new – Bank of America started a program like this around a decade ago.

The Chime App

You can follow your account, spending, and other data through Chime’s app, which is available for Android and iOS.

The app is, basically, your bank. It’s where you go to check your balance, find out if deposits have arrived in your account and see where your money is going.

Like other banking apps, you can use Chime’s app to find ATMs, conduct transactions and check your balance. The app also notifies you when transactions take place.

If you want to access your bank statements, you have to do so through Chime.com. The previous month’s statement is available on the 5th of the following month, Chime’s FAQ section says.

Pro tip: Chime lets you send paper checks via your chime account anywhere within the 50 states. Checks will take three to nine business days to arrive at the payee’s address.

Chimes Bank’s Fees and Spending Limits

Chime’s Spending and Savings don’t charge monthly fees or overdraft fees. However, there are fees and spending limits related to their accounts that you need to know.

Chime Bank’s Fees

After reading through Chime’s fine print, we found only one fee: a $2.50 charge for using out-of-network ATMs.

Chime says they will charge you $2.50 for withdrawing money from any non-MoneyPass ATM locations, and that some financial institutions may charge a fee for checking your balance or attempting a withdrawal without actually withdrawing money.

Here’s how their fine print puts it:

“If you use an ATM not owned by us for any transaction, including a balance inquiry, you may be charged a fee by the ATM operator even if you do not complete a withdrawal. This ATM fee is a third-party fee amount assessed by the individual ATM operator only and is not assessed by us. This ATM fee amount will be charged to your Spending Account.”

Chime’s Spending Limits

Further reading in Chime Bank’s fine print revealed a series of limits on transactions that would be helpful for you to know about.

For the first 30 days you have your account, any check deposits above $5,000 will be split up. The first $5,000 is available the next day, but it could take up to nine days to see the remaining amount in your account.

Chime puts a $5,000 limit on the payment amounts you can make at one time with a check and a $10,000 limit on all checks written in a month.

As we mentioned earlier, Chime limits transfer to your account from other bank accounts to $200 a day and $1,000 a month.

Also, Chime limits your daily cash deposits to $1,000 a day and $10,000 a month.

Overdrawn Accounts

Chime may not process a payment if it requires more money than what you’ve got in your account. If for some reason, you have a negative balance, Chime says you need to make an immediate deposit to push your account back into a positive balance. If your account has a negative balance for 90 days, Chime says they’ll close your account.

Debit Card Restrictions

You can do an unlimited amount of Chime debit card withdrawals during any given day. However, your ATM withdrawal limit is $500 per day. The same rules apply to getting cash back at a point-of-sale.

Chime says your debit card purchases will be limited to $2,500 per day.

Chime Banking Customer Service

If you need to contact Chime, you can do so via calling their customer service phone number from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. CST Monday through Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. CST on Sundays.

You can also contact them through their app, as well as via their email address: support@chime.com.

Reviews of Chime Banking

Chime’s mobile banking apps get excellent reviews from users. At the time of publishing, the app had a 4.7 rating from more than 34,000 reviews in the iTunes store and 4.6 stars from more than 34,000 reviews in the Google Play store.

There wasn’t a high rate of bad reviews for the apps. Those that were negative focused on the limitations of the card and, in some cases, it took longer than anticipated for money to show up in the user’s Chime Spending and Savings accounts.

The Bottom Line

In general, we believe that Chime offers an excellent platform for someone who wants to take their banking online, receives direct deposits from their employer and wants to escape the monthly fees they pay at a bank.

Pros

Based on our research of this app, we believe the banking company's best features are its lack of a monthly fee as well as the ease with which you can use their app.

Banks like Bank of America and Chase make a practice of charging customers each month to have a checking or savings account.

Chime doesn’t, nor does the company charge you when you overdraw your account. Considering that banks like Chase and Bank of America will charge you $34 and $35 for an overdrawn account, not worrying about those fees with Chime is a definite benefit.

Cons

The drawbacks to the banking app are that their ATM fees can be expensive if you’re not near an in-network ATM, which typically isn’t a problem you face with a traditional bank.

However, considering that banking is becoming mobile and ATM withdrawals are declining in popularity, this may not be a big deal.


Read 406 Chime Banking Customer Reviews and Complaints

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Average Consumer Rating: 3.9
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 266 4 star: 29 3 star: 5 2 star: 7 1 star:  99
Bottom Line: 74% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 406
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  • 23 out 28 people found this review helpful

    Chime is the worst bank ever

    • Tennessee,
    • Sep 22, 2017
    • Verified Reviewer

    An ATM ate my card and I didn't receive my withdraw, so I call Chime and they said the would get me a new card in 3-5 business days. It is going on two weeks and I have no card and don't have access to my money. Every time I called them they told me a different story. I'm on the verge of being kicked out of my apartment, losing my car, I have no gas to get to work, and they do nothing to help me. They make my life difficult and they have the worst manager ever. Her name is Lauven Daniel (#2127) and she was very rude and hung up on me. I hope she gets fired.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 25 out 26 people found this review helpful

    Will deny disputes and accuse you of stealing your own money.

    We had someone skim our card information and use it fraudulently. We opened a dispute and sent in a copy of the police report I filed. Disputes take 10 business days.

    I called back to get a status update and found out the dispute had been denied because my husband supposedly made the transaction. We called the company the charge was made with and their fraud department told us that they did not tell Chime any such thing and even verified that the shipping address for the fraudulent order did not match our address or any address we would have used. I was forced to rebut the dispute but could only do it by emailing it in.

    I did get upset and yelled, but they hung up on me 3 times and my husband once. My rebuttal will take another 10 business days. When I asked to speak to a higher up supervisor, I was refused multiple times. I asked to speak with the "investigations" department, and that was refused as well. DO NOT use Chime Card or Bancorp!

    I found a law firm advertising specifically to sue Chime Card for the exact same thing we are going through. So not only do they not want to help you when you are ripped off, a law firm is actively looking for other Chime Card victims.

    Oh and even if you get a new card, watch out. We got a notification that someone tried to use the NEW card at around 3 am the day after we activated it. Make sure you keep your transactions turned off. I only gave one star because I can't give zero.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 29 out 31 people found this review helpful

    Worst banking experience in 40 years

    I have been banking for 40 years. I recently became frustrated with fees and inconvenient access due to a recent move. I read about Chime, and thought it may fit my needs.

    I opened an account on their website, submitted required documentation and soon received my Chime debit card in the mail. A few days later I took my newly activated Chime debit card, and with my verified cell phone and number made an opening funding deposit, via a Green Dot MonePak transaction. The deposit amount was for $500. I immediately received an email confirmation of that deposit. I went to the China app to verify also. It showed that the $500 was credited and part of my balance.

    After about one hour I went to the ATM at my usual bank to withdraw funds. It printed a receipt that read something like "transaction error, try again." I thought I had perhaps chosen the wrong account option. I repeated the $300 withdrawal request, received another printed transaction record stating unauthorized transaction.

    I went into my branch and spoke with my regular account representative (I was at my brick and mortar bank where they know me) about it. She was as perplexed as I. I went back and attempted to do a balance inquiry. It immediately gave the screen message of "account closed," my deposit was now in a "spending account," and the ATM retained my new card. I couldn't believe it. I then tried to login to the Chime app, and received an error message, stating I had my access removed. Same message on the website.

    I then immediately called the customer service number given as a contact us number on the website, and it gave the recorded message customer service closed. I had no option but to wait until the following day, and I called the same number. I spoke with a rep who told me that any account related questions or inquiries were answered by email only. They could provide zero info.

    I emailed Chime at the support address and received an auto-response that it was an error. I tried again, went thru verification that I wasn't a robot, and again response received of not valid. I then called once again and was informed I needed to include the email address of the account with all communications. I did that and never received a personal response. I did keep trying and then began to receive an auto-reply that said to email them with specific account inquiries, if it was that they would get back to me, hold on, it read.

    I called again after several days of no communication of any type was told by the rep. I didn't include a copy of my ID with my email, which they only could see one email from me. They could not answer any account questions. I submitted a new email at the address I verified with that rep, including this time an attachment of my driver's license photo. No response. I emailed again, and nothing.

    I call again, same runaround. No rep is able to answer any account questions nor give me an explanation. When I requested to speak with someone in a supervisory or manager capacity I was told there is not one to speak with. The only option I was told was to email. This is now day 8 of no type of explanation, and zero response. I emailed again, even trying several other possible email addresses I've located on the internet.

    Today is now two weeks exactly, it's been 14 frustrating days, and I've yet to receive even one human reply. I have continued, though, to receive emails from Chime regarding account services and promotional type messages.

    I've never had, in my 49 years, a relationship with any financial institution where I could not speak or receive written communication regarding my account specifics. I'm now angry, in disbelief and shock that a company could be in any position that they felt they did not have to answer to their account holders. It's my hard earned money, not theirs, they are keeping.

    I've read again my Chime small print and agreement. Yes, I believe I deposited too much for my opening deposit. If that be the case, then I can accept that error, and do what I need to make it balance out. Just tell me, communicate how to fix it, and no problem whatsoever. It's when I'm being ignored that I start to feel that a fraud has been perpetrated. Perhaps their non-response will eventually result in my giving up and they keep the funds. Is that what's happening?

    I now see that they are set up to attract those that may have limited finances and banking options. They prey on that circumstance, and once they have access to your info and money, feel they have the upper-hand to dictate how and when you are able to access YOUR money. Opportunists, not a company that thinks of you, but preys on those that for whatever reason, are not in a financially strong position.

    I have no option but to think the worst at this point. I would give this advice to anyone contemplating becoming a member or account holder with Chime. They do not respond to telephone inquiries; all are deferred to email only. Customer service phone hours are restricted to essentially bankers hours. No 24/7 support, even if there's technical, fraud or lost card issues. Unless you have a direct deposit option, the ability to deposit into the accounts are very limited. Instead of being part of a personal and small bank that cares about you as they promise, you are a part of a larger Bancorp company. A customer without a voice or a face.

    Not the future in personal banking I had envisioned or they so deceptively have promised you. At this point, I'm just wishing myself luck here.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 19 out 22 people found this review helpful

    Worst bank (if you can call it that) ever! They should be sued and shut down.

    • Seattle, WA,
    • Nov 10, 2017
    • Verified Reviewer

    They lack any ability to be able to provide customer service to their bankers, any time that I have had a problem with my account they not only refuse to help me and problem solve. In order to get any progress on my problems, I have to get aggravated and rude. I have experienced a number of times I have needed to contact merchant services, and they will not help you no matter what! They go by a bankers book for dummies and will only provide you with three steps they are able to take; their problem-solving sucks!

    Right now I am waiting on a dispute for $100, so I can cancel my account. You would be a fool to bank with these people. I know I made a fool out of myself. I would give zero stars, but that's not an option.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 13 out 14 people found this review helpful

    Another bad experience with Chime

    I requested a check to be mailed to pay a bill. After the payment was not posted to my account in two weeks, I started trying to contact Chime.

    As previous reviewers said, you will not get a reply to emails or messages sent through the app. The customer service phone line does not give an option for speaking to a human unless you go into the "Inquiries about my account such as balance, etc." menu and wait for the last option. So first choose 2 and then 0.

    I didn't know that at first, so I contacted Bancorp and they transferred me, "as a one-time courtesy" to someone I think might have been at Chime Headquarters. He told me to wait until it had been 10 business days, and when I complained about the poor customer service, he told me "Online banking is not for everybody."

    I think everybody, online or not, expects to hear back from customer service when they have a problem. They have 55 complaints to the California BBB, although they indicate they have been appropriately resolved. That might be the way to go if you can't get their attention.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 10 out 11 people found this review helpful

    Tax refund

    • North Carolina,
    • Feb 24, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    My tax refund was supposed to be deposited today, February 22, 2018. The IRS has already told me there's nothing wrong with my taxes, so it's the Chime card. If you want your taxes on time, do not use Chime prepaid card, they suck.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 5 out 5 people found this review helpful

    Refused to refund me my money

    I have filed a dispute for an unauthorized transaction. I was told they would credit my account while the investigation was going on, but they never did. Once the investigation was over, I received the email stating that there was an error on my account and that my account will be credited for the full amount by the following day, but my account was never credited. I have called the company numerous times and spoke to different people and was told different things. I've called and asked for a manager to call me back but never received a callback. I am rightfully owned my credit, and they are refusing to give it to me with no explanation as to why.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 2 people found this review helpful

    Negative reviews

    I don’t like the fact that Chime puts a spending balance on my money; it’s mine, I earned it and should be able to spend how much of it I like. Who is chime to decide that I should have a daily limit? I mean, you never know what’s going to happen, and the fact that if I was in an emergency and needed a certain amount and would not be able to get it really has driven me to stop banking with Chime and take my money and business elsewhere. If I could give a minus star rating I would.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 7 out 8 people found this review helpful

    Do NOT bank with Chime

    • Birmingham, AL,
    • Apr 24, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    My account had a pending transaction that needed to be canceled. I contacted Chime and was told that in order to cancel the transaction, they needed a cancellation number sent to them by email! Well, I did that and payment was reversed instantly! However, the next day I tried to use my card, and it declined my purchase! Now I’m upset because I checked my Chime account from the app and saw that the payment they reversed when it was pending had posted to my account AGAIN 24 hours later! I have weekly direct deposits! And it showed my account -$57, how is this possible?!

    I called to speak with a supervisor and he says well, the payment posted, so we have to file a dispute. Now I’m highly angry because I’m an OTR driver, it takes seven days, and this is a company error. Plus the issue had been canceled and resolved 24 hours prior, before it posted! So, how did a transaction post AFTER it has been CANCELLED AND REVERSED?

    You file a dispute just for the company to say hey, we found no error and thank you for paying extra money due to our lack of business! Do NOT bank with them if you work hard for your earnings! Chime bank WILL take and say "screw you!"

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 9 out 12 people found this review helpful

    Worst bank ever!

    They steal your money and don't try to resolve any of your issues. I would recommend card.com. I'm going back to them. I only left because of the fee. But compared to going through this for $32, I would rather pay the fee.

    You suck Chime! I hope your scam of a business closes down and if I don't get my money back, I will take you to Small Claims Court. Run somewhere else; you have been warned!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 9 out 9 people found this review helpful

    First internet banking experience bust!

    • St. Louis, MO,
    • May 8, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    This is the worst experience I've EVER had with a banking institution! Don't have a situation like a debit card transaction that needs to be reviewed or wanting something as simple as a statement. Yes, a statement. You do not have the ability to print or even see a statement (a simple option with the majority of financial institutions), you have to call and request one. No big deal, right? Wrong!

    I requested one on Monday morning and was told by a supervisor that I would have it within 24 hours. Here we are Friday and I still don't have it and I needed it this morning. Shame on me for not checking because how hard could it be to send a statement? Apparently not that easy. When I called this morning, I was originally told by a CSR that it would take another 7-10 business days. When my call was escalated, I was told by another supervisor that I would have it at the end of the day or tomorrow. I should have known, though, after the ordeal I had to remove a duplicate hold of a transaction on my debit card: three weeks, countless calls, and numerous text messages with them.

    The final resolution of a debit card dispute with these people got me feeling like I won the lottery!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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