Update: Santander has clarified what officially counts as a direct deposit and Paypal is specifically mentioned as not counting, so I daresay that will stop working soon if it hasn’t already.
In case you didn’t know, Santander offers a bank account that lets you earn a $20 bonus every month when you complete some simple requirements: direct depositing $1,500 every month and paying at least two bills with their bill pay service.
In the past basically any ACH transfer has triggered the direct deposit requirement, this has made it exceedingly easy to get the bonus. On March 20th, banks were required to change how ACH transfers code (some banks did this well before March 20th). ACH Transfers will now show up something like this:
“<Your Name> P2P Transfer” (sometimes it’ll show as a2a, not sure on difference)
A P2P transfer doesn’t qualify as a direct deposit (Santander doesn’t specify what a direct deposit is, but it usually needs to be your payroll or government benefit) and as such you don’t qualify for the $20 monthly bonus. To make matters worse, you also need the $1,500 direct deposit requirement to waive the $10 monthly fee on the checking account (there is no monthly fee on savings account which is also required).
You have a few options though if you want to continue to receive this bonus:
- Change your payroll or government benefits to hit this account. I think this is seriously worth considering given that this deal shows no sign of dying. If you’ve got automatic payments set on another account you could always set up an automatic transfer to transfer the funds out of your Santander account when they hit the account.
- Use a business account to do a transfer. If you transfer funds into your Santander account from a business account (with a different financial institution) it won’t code as a P2P transfer and should still count as a direct deposit. Difficulty is getting a business checking account when you don’t have a business.
- Use one of these banks. For some reason some banks are still not coding as P2P transfers and continue to work, here are ones that are still working that I know of:
- Capital One
In addition the following banks definitely do not work anymore:
Another thing that could work is sending an ACH transfer from somebody other than yourself (e.g your partner) as that way the name will not match the name on your account. I’m not sure if this does or doesn’t work, so would appreciate any data points if anybody has tried it.
This is still a great bonus in my opinion, although my view is slightly biased as I’ve been receiving $20 for more than a year now. I think this bonus will continue though, so it’s not too late to sign up. Just be aware that Santander are cracking down on what they consider a direct deposit and an ACH transfer might no longer work (and the ones currently working could stop working at any time).
Also apologies for not informing people of this sooner, I didn’t realize they were cracking down quite this bad and would’ve expected more readers to alert me if this was the case! Either not many of you are doing this deal or you’re using a real direct deposit. Also thanks to Oren’s Money Saver for kicking me in the butt to get around to finally posting this.
I’ve also updated our “what counts as a direct deposit page” to reflect this. As always a list of the best bank bonuses can be found by clicking here and a full listing of them can be found here.
I opened my account 4/15/2017, did a ACH from CAP360 on 4/19/2017. I should expect my bonus sometime in July? How can I know if my ACH counts as DD? My ACH from CAP360 checking posted as ‘ Capital One N.A. CapitalOne X000(account number)
Key….., you commented about the extra 20 program that had been discontinued by Santander back in 2016. They no longer offer the $20 promo for anyone…sorry…
Hopefully you’re talking about another promo you just simply commented in the wrong thread..
Yes, wrong thread. I will post it over on the 225 thread
How do you send ACH from CO360? Bill pay? P2P?
you add a bank to the list of external link and once it’s verified, you can transfer money to and from that account.
Can anyone confirm if Chase Business account will still work as a direct deposit?
This program has ended. It’s not available anymore….
What does that mean?
Aaron, you commented about the extra 20 program that had been discontinued by Santander back in 2016. They no longer offer the $20 promo for anyone…sorry
These idiots tried to send a $5 payment to my SPG Amex and the Santander account was closed over 6 months ago. Now I have a $27 fee from Amex. I don’t even know who to contact.
Opened acct on 10/5/16 with $500 funded from the CSR for checking acct. Deposited $500 from CapitalOne 360 on 12/2/16 and still waiting for the $150 bonus. DP: My account shows this for the deposit: CAPITAL ONE N.A. CAPITALONE 0000xxxxxxxxxxx (redacted account number)
Have you received the bonus?
So transferring from Paypal or Chase would work?
@William, Any DP on whether Charles Schwab brokerage / checking account transfer would qualify? Thanks.
Account opened 09/2016 with $500 funded from Chase credit card to both savings and checking accounts ($1000 total). $500 deposited from Capital One 360 (CO360) and bonus received 12/2016.
Thanks, added dp!
Thanks for providing this DP Ryan, setting up the CO transfer now. Saves me the headache of messing w/ my employer DD!
Do you remember if your CO360 funding posted as TD mentioned a few post below: CAPITAL ONE N.A. CAPITALONE 0000xxxxxxxxxxx (redacted account number)
This is regarding the $150 bonus on Santander checking account offer (ending Dec 2016). I did a transfer from Chase, on my Santander checking account it showed up as “JPMorgan Chase Ext Trnsfr161020 …..”. Does this count as a direct deposit? Thanks!
Hello, did you ever receive the bonus from this bank? I have a chase card and just wanted to make sure that it would count as a direct deposit. Thanks.
Interested as well if Chase counts. Thanks!
Regarding the $150.00 bonus.
Has anybody tried Wells Fargo or Pinnacle Bank for the required $500.00 Direct Deposit?
does alliant still work to qualify for the $150 bonus?