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Which Schwab account are people opening to avoid forex fees?

Which Schwab account are people opening to avoid forex fees?

Old May 13, 2012, 12:16 pm
  #1  
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Which Schwab account are people opening to avoid forex fees?

I've looked at all the Schwab account possibilities and I can't tell enough to make an informed decision, so I'm hoping that other have input.

The accounts I've found are:
  • Basic Checking
  • Regular Checking
  • Interest Checking
  • Interest Checking Plus
  • High Yield Investor Checking

The first four are on schwabbank.com and the last is on schwab.com.

The last one is definitely free (no monthly fee), but does require opening a brokerage account at the same time (not a big deal, but not really needed). It is also unclear what transfer methods are available into that account though. Wire transfers are expensive, so being able to initiate free ACH transfers (ala ING Direct) is a nice feature. The first 4 state "Yes" for "Funds Transfer Services" which seems to offer what I want (though there aren't any details).

The last two offer unlimited ATM fee reimbursement. The first 3 offer up to 6 reimbursements with a max of $9 per statement.

The most unclear thing is any fees on the first 4 account types. All of them say "Yes" in the "Ability to Avoid Monthly Service Charge" row. However, there are no details on what those fees are, nor how to avoid them (direct deposit, etc).

If people have experience with any of these accounts, input/experiences would be appreciated.
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Old May 13, 2012, 12:37 pm
  #2  
 
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Have the High Yield Investor Checking and love it. You can also set up ACH transfers through Schwab, so even if you want to transfer to/from a big bank--BofA, Wells Fargo, etc-- you can do it for free once you set it up through Schwab. That, and their customer service is great, much better than I have received at any other bank. No forex fees while using the Visa Debit abroad, although its a good idea to call ahead and let them know just so they don't freeze your account at an inopportune time. Moreover, I have never had a problem with getting ATM rebates anywhere in the world. Last month, I was refunded a $9.25 ATM fee (!!!) charged in NYC.
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Old May 13, 2012, 12:40 pm
  #3  
 
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Originally Posted by berkeleybum
Have the High Yield Investor Checking and love it.
Ditto. Closed my BankDirect AA mileage account when they started charging monthly fees, opened one of these, and never looked back. Excellent product.
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Old May 13, 2012, 1:00 pm
  #4  
 
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brokerage + high yield
fantastic combo
check deposits are done using mobile app
on the rare chance i need to deposit cash, i put it in a local CU, and transfer electronically for free
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Old May 14, 2012, 6:07 am
  #5  
 
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https://client.schwab.com/Login/Acco...cation_type=S3
Mabuk dan gila is offline  
Old May 14, 2012, 11:44 am
  #6  
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Originally Posted by Mabuk dan gila
I'm not sure why you just put in a link to the application for the High Yield account.... Is that your way of saying "go for the high yield"?
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Old May 14, 2012, 5:38 pm
  #7  
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The forex fees are tied to the debit card. I don't think the account it comes out of matters. YMMV.
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Old May 14, 2012, 9:33 pm
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Originally Posted by Science Goy
Ditto. Closed my BankDirect AA mileage account when they started charging monthly fees, opened one of these, and never looked back. Excellent product.
I also have and use Schwab High Yield Checking but not for any significant balances. As of yesterday, it pays .10% annual yield, so $100,000 in there for a year earns you $100, which is taxable.

The same $100,000 in Bank Direct earns you 120,000 AAdavantage miles, which can be converted to a round-trip business class ticket to Europe with 20,000 miles left over. The Bank Direct fees for a year would be $144.

$100 taxable or a round-trip to Europe in business class for $144? Your choice.
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Old May 16, 2012, 2:49 pm
  #9  
 
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Originally Posted by jasonvr
I'm not sure why you just put in a link to the application for the High Yield account.... Is that your way of saying "go for the high yield"?
Yes, that is the link for "Schwab One Individual Brokerage plus Schwab Bank Investor Checking". That is the account where everything is free with no minimums, no fees, rebates and all of the benefits everyone here enjoys.
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Old May 16, 2012, 2:56 pm
  #10  
 
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Originally Posted by Mountain Trader
$100 taxable or a round-trip to Europe in business class for $144? Your choice.
Since I already earn miles far faster than I can use them (and consequently end up giving away all my miles), I've opted for the $100.
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Old May 17, 2012, 12:51 pm
  #11  
 
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Originally Posted by Science Goy
Since I already earn miles far faster than I can use them (and consequently end up giving away all my miles), I've opted for the $100.
Each has their own personal situation. I haven't read many posts on FT by those who give away all their miles. But that doesn't mean they have no value, does it?

FTers should also know that Capital One has a money market account paying about 6 times the rate of that Schwab account, plus bonus rates even higher for the first year. I'm not a Cap One fan and Schwab has better service. But I am a money fan and 6x the rate is a whopping difference well worth the occassional hassle. At least to me.
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Old May 17, 2012, 1:40 pm
  #12  
 
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if the interest is important, use a rewards checking account. Lake Michigan Credit Union offers 3% on balances up to 15,000 ($450 per year). Of course, there are some conditions (using debit card 10 times a month, login online 4 times a month, Direct Deposit, and eStatements). Doesn't hurt to have both accounts and use them for your benefits.
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Old Feb 23, 2014, 9:46 pm
  #13  
 
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Sorry to dig up an old thread but I am about to sign up for one of these cards. I am trying to decide between the "Interest Checking Plus" and "High Yield Investor Checking." What is the difference between these 2 accounts? I would rather not have an investor account open that I don't plan on using if it isn't necessary. From what I could tell, both accounts are free with no minimum balances, and unlimited ATM fees anywhere in the world. Is there any benefit the High Yield has that the plus doesn't?
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Old Feb 23, 2014, 10:53 pm
  #14  
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Originally Posted by killerz298
Sorry to dig up an old thread but I am about to sign up for one of these cards. I am trying to decide between the "Interest Checking Plus" and "High Yield Investor Checking." What is the difference between these 2 accounts? I would rather not have an investor account open that I don't plan on using if it isn't necessary. From what I could tell, both accounts are free with no minimum balances, and unlimited ATM fees anywhere in the world. Is there any benefit the High Yield has that the plus doesn't?
You must have a brokerage account in order to get a checking account. I have the High Yield Investor Checking account. I'm not sure how it is different from the other type of account you mentioned, but it is as good as it's advertised:

-no ATM fees anywhere in the world (there might be a few exceptions in far flung countries, but I've never been charged once)
-no minimum balance
-no fees for inbound wires
-very easy to move money between brokerage and checking (though their systems are down this weekend... the transfer I initiated on Saturday will not post until Monday morning in New York; this is very rare).
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Old Aug 30, 2014, 2:02 pm
  #15  
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Just an FYI for any Schwabbies using their debit cards: you can request a Chip card now. Just go into your account and ask for it via chat.
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