Zelle Not Working with Chime [What You’re Doing Wrong]

By Jim Marous 17 Min Read

If you use Chime, you might have been wondering if you can use Zelle with your Chime account. This post is here to share some good news – there are ways to solve the problem of Zelle not working with Chime.

Both Zelle and Chime are apps for managing money, letting you send and receive money. This is why it’s not unusual for people to want to send money between both platforms- but there are things most users don’t know.

So, in this article, we’d be exploring the reason(s) why this problem exists and why the “solutions” are more like workarounds rather than direct fixes.

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  • Chime and Zelle are both popular fintech apps, but they don’t work together directly due to conflicting interests between their parent companies.
  • Users looking to transfer money can use alternatives like Chime’s “Pay Anyone” feature, Cash App, or Venmo, which can be linked to a Chime account.
  • While these workarounds exist, they may come with their own fees or restrictions, so it’s important to choose the best option for your needs.
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Does Chime Work with Zelle?

No, not directly, and there’s some history behind this. But first, we have to give you some background to both companies.

Chime is a fintech company that partners with regional banks to provide certain banking services. It offers savings and checking accounts, and they even throw in payment cards for you. The banking services it offers are provided by the Bancorp Bank and Stride Bank, both of which are FDIC members.

What is especially cool about Chime is that they provide their customers with a lot of fee-free services such as; no extra charges, no monthly fees, no minimum balance requirement, and they won’t bug you with foreign transaction fees either.

Now, let’s talk about Zelle. It is another player in the fintech game, but rather than a banking app, it’s more of a payment service provider for individuals and businesses to send and receive money between US-based bank accounts. It’s super speedy and safe too.

Zelle has a large digital financial network, teaming up with around 1700 banks and money apps. And it came to the scene in 2017, so it’s kind of new compared to Chime.

With Zelle being all ‘cool’ in terms of integration with many money platforms, it seems like a no-brainer for it to work smoothly with Chime. But is that really the case? We’ll give you the scoop in the next part.

Reasons for Zelle Not Working with Chime

Zelle Not Working with Chime

Even though Zelle is pretty good, not all banking apps and digital payment platforms in the United States have it. Even Chime (the app in question), doesn’t have Zelle.

Before, some customers could use Zelle with Chime by connecting their Chime card to the Zelle app. But now, it seems like that’s not working anymore. This means new customers can’t use this option, and even old customers can’t do it when their Chime card expires.

This might be because of something called ‘Chime Pay Anyone’. The Chime Pay Anyone feature was basically developed to enable its users to send money to anyone instantly no matter the type of bank account they used. This meant – Both Chime customers and people who aren’t with Chime could use it.

Soon a lot of Chime customers wanted to use Zelle to send and get money quickly from family, friends, and others. But when they looked in the Chime app on their phones, they were surprised that they couldn’t find where to use Zelle. Why did this happen?

Now, for us to understand the reason for Zelle Not Working with Chime, we need to take a look at why these apps were made. Chime was created to be a new kind of bank that uses fancy state-of-the-art technology for digital banking transactions. It’s meant to be better than the old banks like Bank of America and Wells Fargo. And it was kicking their butts in the marketplace

In what seemed like a ‘tit for tat’ response, seven of the biggest traditional banks in the US joined together to form a new limited liability company called Early Warning Services. This company basically provides risk management and fraud prevention services for more than 2,000 financial institutions and government entities. It helps these institutions to handle digital payments in real time and avoid scams.

Early Warning Services also created Zelle to let people in the US easily send money between their bank accounts. This way, big old-fashioned banks were able to compete with Chime and other new banks. But in reality, Zelle has always been stepping on Chime’s toes by offering virtually the same services to its customers.

While these all make for good reading, there are no actual figures to back this up. We also don’t think it should stand because some new banks can use Zelle, even if Chime can’t. Most regular banks and a few online banks, like Varo, Capital One, and Ally Bank, can use Zelle.

So, what we think is that it seems as if both types of banks have conflicting interests. Even though they could make life better for their customers by working together, for some reason, they don’t. We’ll just have to wait and see if this changes in the future.

Zelle Not Working with Chime? What to Do

Now that you have a proper background on why the “Zelle not working with Chime” problem exists. The next thing is to find solutions to your problem.

So in this section, we will show you the alternatives to using Zelle with Chime (making transfers from Chime). You can try the “Pay Anyone” feature, Cash App, Venmo, or linking your bank account.

1. Use Chime’s Pay Anyone Feature

To start, open the Chime app – it’s the one with a white ‘c’ on a green background.

With Pay Anyone, you can send money to both Chime and Zelle users. If the person you are sending to doesn’t have Chime, they’ll get instructions by text or email on how to get the money.

a. Go to Pay Anyone

Find the tab called Pay Anyone at the bottom of the app, between Move Money and ATM Map. A new page will pop up.

b. Put in the Receiver’s Information

In the ‘To’ field, type the person’s name or $ChimeSign. If they’re not on Chime, put in their email or phone number.

Click Enter to move to the Pay or Request page.

c. Add the Amount

Use the keypad on the screen to type in the amount you want to Pay or Request.

You can also add an emoji or a note about the payment.

d. Tap Request or Pay

Choose Request if you want them to pay you, and Pay if you’re sending them money.

Remember, you can only Request money from other Chime users.

e. Tap Request or Pay Again

This confirms your action. The person you sent money to will get a notification in their Chime app. If they are a Chime user, they just need to tap “Claim my money” to get it.

If they are not on Chime and on Zelle, they’ll get a text or email with a link. They can use that link to claim the money without needing a Chime account.

2. Cash App

Cash App is one of Zelle’s biggest competitors. It works just like Zelle and lets you send and get money quickly and safely. Plus, it’s free.

But Cash App offers more than just that – you can also invest in stocks and cryptocurrency (like Bitcoin). They even have special deals through Cash App Pay and the Cash Card (which is a debit card).

How to use Cash App with Chime

There are two ways to do it: by connecting your Chime debit card info to your Cash App or by directly linking the two accounts. Let’s learn how to do either of these methods.

In the first way, where you link your debit card, start by opening your Cash App and logging in.

Put in where you are and tap your profile icon at the top of the screen. Scroll down until you see Linked Banks and tap on it. Fill in your Chime debit card info and tap Add Card. That’s it.

The second way to connect the apps is even better. Why? Because it doesn’t rely on just one debit card – the risk of losing it and getting disconnected from Chime in your Cash App is lower. Also, you don’t have to keep linking things if you get a new Chime debit card.

Follow the steps below to learn how to link your Cash App and Chime accounts:

  1. Open your Cash App on your device and log in with your credentials.
  2. Inside the Cash App, look for the option called Linked Banks to connect your Chime account.
  3. Instead of entering your debit card details, choose the No Card option. When you do this, a message will appear on your screen.
  4. Click on the Continue button in the message. This will open up a list or search bar for you to find your financial institution.
  5. Scroll through the list or type Chime into the search bar to locate the link to Chime’s website.
  6. Click on the link that takes you to Chime’s website. This is where you’ll complete the connection between Cash App and Chime.
  7. On Chime’s website, enter your Chime account login details.
  8. Once you’ve successfully logged in to your Chime account through the link, your Cash App and Chime accounts will be connected.

That’s all to it. Your Cash App and Chime accounts are linked, and you can conveniently make money transfers between the two.

3. Venmo

The Venmo app is not just for making payments. You can use it to share bills with pals and family, and you might even get back 3% of what you spend.

How to use Venmo with Chime

If you don’t want to use Cash App, you can try Venmo. Here’s how:

a. Link Chime Debit Card

To use Venmo with your Chime account, you can hook up your Chime debit card.

  • Open the Venmo app, and sign in. Tap Me (usually your initials or photo).
  • Look for the gear icon, which takes you to the app’s Settings. Scroll and find Payment Method.
  • From there, you can add your Chime card by tapping Add Bank or Card and typing in the card details.

b. Use Plaid Verification

Another way is linking your Chime account to Venmo using Plaid verification. This can be a secure method to connect the two accounts.

  1. Open Your Venmo App
  2. Navigate to Add Bank or Card. Sign in to your Venmo account. Once you’re in, look for the option that says Add Bank or Card. You can usually find this by tapping on your profile or initials.
  3. Select your preferred bank (Venmo). When you’re on the Add Bank or Card page, choose Venmo as your preferred bank. This will be the bank you’re linking to.
  4. Choose online instant verification. Instead of entering your card details, look for the option that says Online Instant Verification using Plaid. This is the method we are using to connect Chime with Venmo.
  5. Follow Plaid’s prompts. Once you select Online Instant Verification, follow the prompts that Plaid provides. They will guide you through the process.
  6. Log Into your Chime account. Plaid will ask you to log into your Chime account as part of the verification process. Enter your Chime account login details as requested.
  7. Successful Login. After logging in successfully, Plaid will complete the verification process, linking your Chime account to Venmo.

Once the process is complete, your Chime account will be successfully linked to Venmo.

c. Link a Bank that Is Supported in Zelle on Chime

Last on our list – linking a bank account is a pretty straightforward way to link your Chime account to Zelle. It’s easy, so don’t worry.

All you need is a bank that works with Zelle. Just pick a bank that Zelle supports, and then connect that bank to your Chime account.

When you want to send money, first move it to the bank you linked with Chime.

From that bank, you can then send the money using Zelle.

Zelle supports banks like the Bank of Africa and Capital One. Keep in mind, though, that this kind of transfer might take up to 4 days to reach the person you’re sending it to.

But it works well, and it’s a good option.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Chime work with Venmo?

Absolutely. All you need to do is follow the instructions we gave in the “How to use Venmo with Chime” section of this article and you’re good to go.

Can you transfer Zelle to Venmo?

No, you can’t. Zelle and Venmo work differently. Venmo keeps your money on your balance, while Zelle moves money directly between bank accounts.

Conclusion—Zelle not working with Chime

As a Chime user, at this point, you already know the reason why your Chime app does not have Zelle or support it. I have talked about solutions like other payment apps that work with both Chime and Zelle. But keep in mind that these outside solutions might have charges or restrictions.

So, take your time to look into them and see what’s best before you decide.

Read alsoWhat Banks Use Zelle for Free?

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Jim Marous is a Top 5 Retail Banking Influencer, Global Speaker, Podcast Host and Co-Publisher at The Financial Brand. I am a co-author here at Finance and Pay, writing on a lot of topics regarding payments, banking software, cards, and investing.
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