Welcome to a weekly feature on the Renés Points blog. Each week this series covers in a “rookie” way either a Delta or travel related theme and attempts to break down to a basic level each topic. You can read up on all the previous posts HERE. Now on to this week’s feature.
In this day and age no one should still be paying a monthly service fee for a checking account (if you are, call and ask for a statement credit or dump the account). If you can’t find a bank locally that will offer you a basic, no fee checking account or you can’t meet the qualifications for one then why not consider using Bluebird as your primary checking account? Novel idea right?
First of all if you are not aware, Bluebird is a fee free checking account! You can use the online bill payment service for free and it works pretty much just like any other bank’s online bill payment service. If you are still paying your bills by physically writing a check, placing it in an envelope, and paying postage to mail it then shame on you! Online bill payment services are easy, safe, faster and best of all, free!
Once you have a Bluebird account set up, you just log in and click on “Pay a Bill” from the Pay & Transfer tab. There are many recognized payees already in the Bluebird system and these will typically receive your payment in 1 or 2 business days. You type in who you want to pay in the search bar and see if your payee is recognized or not. If your payee is not recognized you just enter the payment address and the payment will take 3-5 days to process and be received by your payee.
You can also write checks from your Bluebird account. You just click on “Write a Check” from the Pay & Transfer tab and then enter the check information. You do have to write the Pre-authorization code on the check and the amount will be deducted from your balance immediately. You can even order checks from Bluebird 100 at a time and they will ship them to you all for free. You’ll find this in Settings near the bottom of the page. When’s the last time your bank offered you free checks?
Did you know with the Bluebird app you can deposit checks by taking a photo of the check up to a max. amount of $2000 per day and $10,000 per month. Funds are typically available in 6 days using this method, but there are no fees. You can also set up your Bluebird to receive funds by direct deposit. You can also deposit cash as well at any Walmart location.
You can also transfer funds from one Bluebird account to another. There are a couple of ways to do this, but the simplest is to select “Send Money” and then just type in the email or phone number associated with the Bluebird account you want to send money to. It is instant and requires only that the person receiving the funds accept the payment. This could be an easy way for parents to keep budgeted funds available for their kids away at school without having to release all of the funds at once or have the Bluebird card in order to add the funds to the account. This is also fee free.
Overall there is a lot of value and convenience here, and if for whatever reason having an account at a local bank isn’t practical or possible for you then Bluebird may be the perfect answer and not just for emptying gift cards! – René