Any Chime Bank review must include multiple outages the online-only bank experiences. So, even though this site is an affiliate of Chime Bank, this doesn’t influence our evaluations.
Chime is not like a traditional bank. It’s actually a Fintech bank (Financial Technology). Fintech banks use modern technologies to provide automated financial services.
In 2019, Chime Bank reached 5 million customers in the U.S., which is impressive considering the financial institution was established in 2013. The San Francisco-based startup created an FDIC-insured online-only bank without any physical locations, but it’s not been without some major problems.
Chime Bank Outages
Chime bank reviews cannot exclude major outages where customers lose complete access to their cash.
- Chime Jul. 8, 2019 Outage. Customers experienced problems logging into their mobile accounts. Chime responded within an hour of reported problems that the issue was resolved. However, customers continued reporting intermittent and ongoing issues logging into their accounts through July 9, 2019.
- Chime Sep. 15, 2019, Outage. Customers were unable to complete certain debit card and mobile transactions. Chime customers posted complaints on Twitter and Facebook stating they were unable to make card purchases or withdraw funds from ATMs and also got error messages when trying to view transactions on the app.
- Chime Oct. 15, 2019 Outage. Chime experienced a major outage for several days. Millions of customers were stranded in restaurants, stuck at gas stations, airports and grocery stores with no way to pay.
The most recent (Oct. 15, 2019) Chime outage garnered an alarming amount of frustrated and angry Chime customers. The latest outage appears to have been on a much larger scale than previous outages.
Livid Chime customers turned to Twitter and Facebook to voice their complaints. Here is a small sample:
Some Chime customers reported being short hundreds of dollars with no explanation.
My account is negative $300 on top of the other money that disappeared from my spending account. WTF!! 😡
— Humbled Black King (@IamMrConceited) October 18, 2019
$140 was taken from my account! I haven’t used my card till just a little bit ago. The transaction was $13! Give me my money back!!!!
— Clint Simpson (@clint_simpson) October 18, 2019
UMMM if my money is MISSING it’s clearly NOT safe? Quit lying and do better.
— Tay☕ (@Taayyy_babe) October 18, 2019
It’s time for a backup bank if Chime is your only banking option. It’s best to spread your money over several banks anyway.
Opening a second account or having multiple accounts at several banks means you’ll always have access to funds. At least have two accounts and possibly split your direct deposit between the two.
If you’ve had past banking issues, there are several second chance banking options that can be opened online.
5 Alternative Online Banks to Chime – No More Outages
1. Best Bad Credit Option: BBVA Online Checking
The BBVA Online Checking Account is most recommended for anyone with bad credit or ChexSystems records. The BBVA Online Checking Account is available in ALL STATES (except Alaska & Hawaii). Enjoy free checking, mobile deposits, bill pay, check writing, Visa debit card, and over 64,000 FREE ATMs nationwide where you can deposit checks and cash.
BBVA Online Checing Details:
- Open with $25.
- No Monthly Service Fees.
- No ATM fees nationwide at 64,000 BBVA USA and participating non-bank ATMs.
- Automatic rebate of ATM fee charged by other banks.
- Deposit cash and checks at Allpoint® Network ATMs.
- Complimentary Online Banking and Mobile Banking, plus Mobile Deposit® and Bill Pay.
- Popmoney® lets you send money to virtually anyone, within minutes, using an email address or mobile number.
- Easily keep track of your purchases and get instant transaction alerts on the go with BBVA Mobile Banking App.
- Earn cash back for everyday debit card purchases.
Earn a $200 cash bonus by: Receiving a qualifying direct deposit of $500 by Dec. 31, 2019.
2. Best Second Chance Option: OneUnited Bank
OneUnited Bank’s U2 E-Checking Account is a second chance checking account available to people in ALL STATES. OneUnited Bank is the first Black internet bank and one of the largest Black owned banks in the country, with branches in Los Angeles, Boston and Miami. Get paid up to 2 days early with direct deposit. To apply you must first enter your name and email address plus choose the “Debit/Checking” option then click the button “Apply Today.” During the application process you’ll need to choose the “U2 E-Checking (2nd Chance) Account” option plus choose a plain debit card or one of their speciality debit card designs.
U2 E-Checking Account Details:
- Minimum opening deposit of $100
- Get paid up to 2 days early with direct deposit
- Free Online, Mobile Banking & Free Bill Pay
- Obtain Cash, Surcharge Free at Over 30,000 ATMs Nationwide
- Deposit checks through the mobile app using Mobile Remote Deposit Capture
- Monthly service charge of $12.00 for checking
3. Best for Interest Earning: SoFi Money Cash Management Account
The SoFi Money Cash Management Account is offered by SoFi Securities LLC, a FINRA registered broker dealer. With the cash management account you can make deposits, write checks, utilize electronic bill pay and transfer money. There are no monthly fees or overdraft fees. Plus, you earn a competitive 1.60% APY on all deposits. There is no minimum balance requirement to open a SoFi cash management account.
SoFi Cash Management Account Details:
- No account fees
- Unlimited reimbursed ATM fees
- High-yield interest rate
- Access to SoFi member benefits like career coaching and financial advising
- Automated bill pay
- Easy P2P payments at no cost
- Freeze debit card on-the-go
- FDIC-insured deposits up to $1.5MM through the SoFi Money sweep program with partner banks.
Earn a $50 cash bonus by: Depositing $100 or more within 14 days of opening the account.
4. Best Old School Option: Axos Bank
Axos Bank (formerly Bank of Internet) is the oldest online-only bank in the United States and a pioneer in running a fulll-service bank without physical branches. The Essential Checking Account is a no-fee account with unlimited reimbursement of any domestic ATM fee. Get your paycheck up to two days early with direct deposit express. Axos Bank does pull ChexSystems records and requires average to good credit.
Essental Checking Account Details:
- Unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements
- No overdraft or non-sufficient funds fees
- No monthly maintenance fees
- No minimum monthly balance requirements
- Direct Deposit Express – Get paid up to 2 days early
- Exclusive Visa Offers & Perks
5. Best for Budgeting: Simple
Simple offers a no-fee checking account that is tied to its online banking and mobile app. Tracking features for budgeting and spending are built into the app that you use for mobile banking. Simple assists you in saving more money with a savings goal feature to help you stash away cash for a future trip, purchase or anything else.
Simple Account Details:
- Earn up to 2.15% APY for $10,000 or more balances and 2.00% APY for balances under $10,000
- Online checking account
- Built-in budgeting and saving tools
- Quick direct deposit set-up
- No overdraft fees
- Instant push notifications for every swipe
- Over 40,000 totally-free ATMs
Chime Bank Review
Accounts Offered. Chime says they are it’s the fastest-growing challenger to traditional banks in the world. Customers enjoy many of the same benefits traditional bank customers do when it comes to checking and savings accounts. Although the checking account is referred to as a “Spending Account.”
No Fees. Chime has no monthly fees or overdraft fees, and it lets you round up purchases to the next dollar and save the remainder. Plus, because it’s FDIC-insured, customers have a safe place to keep their money.
Online Banking. Digitally savvy consumers will enjoy Chime’s banking platform as accounts can be managed entirely from your smartphone. Chime banking’s app has garnered a reputation as one of the best Money Management apps out there.
Early Direct Deposit. Customers with direct deposit can get paid two days early.
Mobile Deposits. Mobile check deposit is available, but you’ll have to deposit cash at Green Dot locations, which will charge a fee.
Free ATMs. You’ll have access to over 38,000 fee-free MoneyPass and Visa Plus Alliance ATMs. Out-of-network fee is $2.50.
Final thoughts on Chime Bank
Chime Bank meets the banking needs of millions of people as one of the largest challenger banks. Chime provides banking services to consumers who want to avoid the costs and complications that sometimes come with traditional banks.
But multiple outages outweigh the benefits of Chime Bank when customers loose access to their money, experience major outages and have to chase down missing money from their accounts. It’s worth considering other tech-friendly financial institutions that will help customers get ahead financially.