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I first wrote about the Chime Card a year and a half ago and while I’ve written about them a bunch of times since then, I took somewhat of a break over the past few months. There were times were there were no offers available or they were subpar. But a few new offers just appeared and I thought they were worth sharing. And for those new to these type of offers, this is a good recap of how you can save some money if interested. For those new to this card, it is a debit card that gives similar type deals to the American Express Offers. By shopping at participating merchants with your Chime Visa debit card you receive money back and unlike Amex Offers you do not need to sync or register your card in advance. Although offers are limited so they are available as a first come first serve (although I have yet to see an offer reach its maximum quickly).
These offers are set to expire March 26, 2016 and include:
- Lyft – Spend $5, get $1 back
- Airbnb – Spend $30, get $3 back
- Panera – Spend $10, get $2 back
- Crate & Barrel – Spend $30, get $3 back
- Kiehl’s – Spend $30, get $3 back
- Bed Bath & Beyond – Spend $30, get $3 back
- West Elm – Spend $30, get $3 back
- Southwest Airlines – Spend $50, get $5 back
- Virgin America – Spend $50, get $5 back
- Warby Parker – Spend $95, get $5 back
- HotelTonight – Spend $30, get $5 back
- The Container Store – Spend $25, get $5 back
- Handy – Spend $35, get $5 back
While these aren’t huge money saving opportunities, I will personally save about $20 this go around. This will benefit me at Panera (since I eat there all the time), Bed Bath & Beyond (since I have to purchase a wedding gift for someone), Southwest Airlines (since they are my airline of choice and I will just purchase a gift certificate to use on taxes/fees for upcoming flights), and Handy (since I use them to clean my apt!). As I mentioned in some of my personal examples, for many merchants you can purchase a gift card to use at a future time and still trigger the statement credit. For example, purchase a $10 Panera gift card at the restaurant and get $2 back on your Chime Card within a few minutes. While it is only a few dollars here or there, over the course of the year it definitely adds up to something for purchases I was going to make anyways.
New to Chime? While you can find all details on the Chime card in this prior post, here is a synopsis:
- What is the Chime Card? A debit card where you must apply and enter your SS#. It is a soft inquiry, which will not affect your credit score.
- How do I apply? Apply here. If approved you will not be able to take advantage of any of the offers until your card comes in the mail. In the meantime, however, you can setup your account online, download the Chime app, and fund your card.
- How do I unload my money from the card? Use your card at any merchant that accepts Visa! You can also purchase gift cards, i.e., Amazon.com, if you want to get the money off fast to use for future purchases. You can withdraw your money at an ATM (up to $500/day) but there is a $2.50 fee per transaction on domestic ATMs. You might also incur a fee from the ATM provider directly.
- What are the fees for this card? If there is no activity on your card for 180 you will be charged $5. Activity can be as simple as a $1 purchase or a $1 transfer from PayPal, but there still needs to be some activity. A $5 fee can add up so make sure to remember this! This card comes with a 3% foreign transaction fee.
- How do I take advantage of the Chime offers? The main purpose of this card is to receive money back with participating offers, not to use at everyday merchants. When you see an offer, it will tell you how many are left. Surprisingly, not many people use Chime, so even if you see there are only 50 transactions left for that one offer, it could take weeks to meet. Before you shop though, make sure there are at least a few transactions left to ensure you will get the money back to your Chime account. Each offer is only available once per card. One thing to note – purchasing gift cards typically works to trigger the cash back. If online, just make sure you are purchasing through the store directly and not a third-party merchant (which is typically with eGift cards but not physical plastic gift cards).
Overall, I found the process with applying and using the card incredibly easy. While this is not a huge money making opportunity, I believe I will save about $100-$200 over the course of the year. Not so bad for hardly any effort!