Posted by William Charles on March 26, 2017
Bank Account Bonuses

Published on March 26th, 2017 | by William Charles


[IL or CA only] CEFCU $100 Gift Card Bonus, Direct Deposit Not Required

Offer at a glance

  • Maximum bonus amount: $75/$25
  • Availability: 
    • Live or work in Fulton, Knox, Livingston, Logan, McLean, Macon, Marshall, Mason, Peoria, Putnam, Sangamon, Stark, Tazewell, or Woodford counties in Illinois.
    • Live, work, or worship in Alameda, Contra Costa, or Santa Clara counties in California
  • Direct deposit required: No
  • Additional requirements: See below
  • Hard/soft pull: Soft pull
  • ChexSystems: Yes
  • Credit card funding: No
  • Monthly fees: Fee free option available
  • Early account termination fee: Unknown
  • Household limit: None
  • Expiration date: June 30th, 2017 December 31st, 2017

The Offer

$75 checking bonus | $25 bill pay bonus

  • CEFCU are offering two bonuses:
    • $75 gift card for opening a new checking account by June 30th and completing the following requirements:
      • Fulfill ONE or more of the following:
        • Having a minimum individual or household account balance.
        • Making five or more purchases in a month with a CEFCU Debit Mastercard® linked to this account.
        • Paying a bill using CEFCU Bill Pay.
        • Having direct deposits totaling $200 or more in a month
      • Sign up for eStatements
    • Pay two bills using CEFCU and get another $25 gift card

Not sure if it’s actually possible to do both since it says you’re limited to one checking account related bonus per year.


The Fine Print

  • Bonus. For checking accounts only, you will receive a gift card valued at $75 as a bonus if you open a new checking account between 1/1/17 and 6/30/17. To receive the bonus, you must: (i) qualify for a checking account; (ii) open a new checking account with a deposit of $25 or more; (iii) satisfy one or more of the Loyalty account relationship requirements under the CEFCU Membership Plan within the first full calendar month after account opening; (iv) agree to receive your CEFCU account statements electronically, via CEFCU eStatements (excludes Credit Card eStatements), and (v) maintain your open checking account in good standing as of the bonus fulfillment date.
  • Your gift card will be mailed to you at your home address within 4 to 6 weeks of the end of the first full calendar month after account opening if you satisfied one or more of the Loyalty account relationship requirements under the CEFCU Membership Plan and agreed to receive your CEFCU account statements electronically before the end of that first full calendar month.
  • The gift card bonus is not available on transfers of existing CEFCU checking accounts. All bonuses are not available on Health Savings Accounts, Rep Payee accounts, Basic Business Checking accounts, Dividend Business Checking, or Business Checking accounts.
  • Offer subject to change.
  • Limit one personal checking account-related bonus per member.
  • The value of the gift card bonus is considered interest to you and will be reported on IRS Form 1099-INT.
  • All bank account bonuses are treated as income/interest and as such you have to pay taxes on them

Avoiding Fees

I was unable to find a fee schedule so I’m unsure if there is any early account termination fee or not. Their free checking account also has no monthly fees to worry about.

Our Verdict

My personal “rule” is to not bother with bonuses under $100. The fact that this is a maximum of $100, it’s for a gift card and you might not even be able to stack to get the full bonus means it’s a pass for me. Because of this I won’t be adding it to best checking bonuses. As always please share any information you have about this bank below.

Big thanks to reader, David G & Curmudgeon who let us know. Learn how to find bonuses and contribute to the site here.

Useful posts regarding bank bonuses:

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My wife and I opened CEFCU accounts years ago, but when we did the answer to the unknown questions was: Hard Pull: No, Chexsystems: Yes, and Credit Card funding: No.
You also are required to open a savings account to become a member, minimum balance $5.


wouldnt let me open an account! grr


I don’t live or work in the covered counties but do go to a religious place often which is in the covered county.

I can see how they verify live/work in county requirement, but how does a credit union verify whether you go to a worship place in that county?


The deadline for CEFCU bonuses has been extended until end of year:

$75 bonus:
For Checking accounts only, you will receive a gift card valued at $75 as a bonus if you open a new checking account between 7/1/17 and 12/31/17

$25 bonus:
Available to members who open new Bill Pay service between 7/1/17 and 12/31/17


$75 bonus has been extended through 6/30/18.


It looks to be extended until the end of the year

Yet Another Redditor
Yet Another Redditor

$75 bonus extended thru 6/30/19, same link
$24 referral bonus here

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