April 2, 2024

Upgrade Checking Account Bonus

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Want to take advantage of an Upgrade checking account bonus? Here's all you need to know about how to qualify.

Bored with generic checking accounts? Upgrade, a fintech company, may have the solution.

The online checking account provides cool rewards for spending. Additionally, you can unlock a bonus by opening a new account.

Learn more and see if it can elevate your financial journey.

Have you ever opened a new account specifically to earn a bonus/promotional offer?

What is Upgrade Rewards Checking

Upgrade's Rewards Checking Plus is an online checking account that boasts no monthly fees. It comes with a debit card that you can easily connect to Apple Pay® or Google Pay™ for contactless transactions.[1]

You can also set up direct deposits to get rewards up to 2% cash back on common everyday expenses and early paychecks.

Lastly, you can pair this checking account with the Premier Savings account to help you reach your financial goals faster.

How Do You Earn a Bonus from Upgrade?

Promotional offers can change, but here's how you usually get an Upgrade bonus:

  1. Choose an Upgrade card.
    You can open any of the following Upgrade cards: Life Rewards, Cash Rewards, Upgrade OneCard, and Upgrade Select.

  2. Open a new Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus account.
    Next, you have to open a new Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus account upon applying for your Upgrade card.

  3. Make 3 debit card transactions.
    Once you have your Upgrade card and have set up your new Rewards Checking Plus account, you must make 3 qualifying debit card transactions (excluding ATM transactions) within 60 days to get the bonus.

Remember, to qualify for the bonus, you need to open a Rewards Checking Plus when applying for an Upgrade card.

What are Upgrade cards?
An Upgrade card allows you to purchase in stores as a credit card would. However, it differs by providing you with the predictability of personal loans. You are given a set time to pay off your balances, unlike typical credit cards. They currently have four cards in their lineup, and each comes with distinct features.

Pros and Cons of Upgrade Rewards Checking


  • No monthly maintenance fees
  • Comes with Upgrade VISA® Debit Card
  • Up to 2% cash back on purchases (with direct deposit)
  • Receive paycheck 2 days early (with direct deposit)
  • FDIC-insured through Cross River Bank


  • No cash deposits
  • No physical locations
  • Requires direct deposit to get 2% cash back

When picking a new bank, which checking feature matters to you most?

How to Open an Upgrade Account

Since Upgrade is a fintech company with no physical branches, you can easily open an account online with these steps:[2]

  1. Visit the Upgrade website and select your chosen banking product.
  2. Answer the online application form by providing the necessary information.
  3. Submit your application and fund your account.

How to Withdraw Money from Upgrade

You can access the funds in your Upgrade checking account by doing any of the following:[3]

  • Use your Upgrade VISA® Debit Card for physical purchases and ATM withdrawals.
  • Connect your Visa card to Apple Pay® or Google Pay™ for contactless purchases.
  • Link an external bank account and transfer money.

How do I deposit money to my Upgrade account?
You can add money to your Upgrade account by either doing an electronic funds transfer or setting up a direct deposit.[4]

Who is Upgrade Checking Best For?

Upgrade's checking account is best for people who want to get rewards and benefits on their spending account. You can get up to 2% cash back on common daily expenses for active accounts with a direct deposit of $1000 per month.

So, if you want to earn incentives as you manage your everyday finances, opening an Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus account is a good idea!

Other Bank Offers You May Like


When will you receive the Upgrade checking bonus?
The bonus is usually credited to your Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus account within 60 days after you meet the requirements.

Is Upgrade a legitimate bank?
Upgrade is not a bank but a legitimate fintech company. They partner with different banks and institutions to be able to offer loans, deposit products, and such. They also hold several state licenses which you can find here.

Is Upgrade an FDIC-insured bank?
Upgrade, being a fintech and not a bank, is not FDIC-insured. However, their checking and savings accounts, offered through Cross River Bank (an FDIC member), are federally insured up to $250,000 per depositor, per ownership category.[5]

Bottom Line

Earning a checking account bonus has never been easier with Upgrade. All you need to do is get an Upgrade card, open a checking account to go with it, and make 3 debit card transactions.

It's much simpler than other banks that may require direct deposits or hefty minimum balances. Plus, you get a rewarding checking account to sweeten the deal.

So, don't pass up on these bonuses and seize the opportunity while you still can!


Write to Darlene Santos at feedback@creditdonkey.com. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for our latest posts.

Note: This website is made possible through financial relationships with some of the products and services mentioned on this site. We may receive compensation if you shop through links in our content. You do not have to use our links, but you help support CreditDonkey if you do.


OneCard with Rewards Checking - $200 Bonus

  • 3% cash back on everyday expenses (up to $500 in rewards per calendar year); 2% on everything else
  • No annual fee
  • Choose to Pay Now with no interest, or Pay Later
  • $200 bonus when you also open and fund a new Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus account and make 3 qualifying purchases on your Upgrade OneCard and/or Rewards Checking Plus debit card within 60 days
Upgrade is a financial technology company, not a bank. Personal Credit Lines are issued by Cross River Bank, Member FDIC. The Upgrade Card is issued by Cross River Bank, Member FDIC, pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc.
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Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed on this page are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.

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