Posted by William Charles on January 13, 2016
Bank Account Bonuses

Published on January 13th, 2016 | by William Charles


[Expired] Wells Fargo $100 Checking Bonus – Available Publicly & Nationwide – Direct Deposit Optional

Reposting because the EATF is definitely not charged anymore.

Offer at a glance

  • Maximum bonus amount: $100
  • Availability: Nationwide (some areas may be restricted, enter your zip code to find out)
  • Direct deposit required: Optional, must be $500+ if chosen (see what counts here)
  • Additional requirements: 10 debit card transactions or direct deposit
  • Hard/soft pull: Soft
  • Credit card funding: Up to $50 (used to be $500)
  • Monthly fees: $10, waivable 
  • Early account termination fee: None
  • Expiration Date: February 22, 2016

The Offer

Direct link to offer

  • Receive a $100 sign up bonus when you open a Wells Fargo checking account and complete the following requirements:
    •  Open a new, eligible consumer checking account with a minimum opening deposit of $50 (not including the bonus) in a store (can also be opened online, looks like it’ll pre-populate the promotional code ‘PROSQ1’) by February 22, 2016
    • Complete one of the following: 10 debit card purchases or payments or establish a qualifying direct deposit of $500 or more

wells fargo $100 bonus

The Fine Print

  • Requirements must be completed within 60 days of account opening
  • We will deposit the bonus into your new checking account within 45 days after eligibility and qualifications have been met
  • Offer available in all Wells Fargo stores, online at, or by phone at 1-800-932-6736
  • All consumer checking accounts except Teen CheckingSM are eligible for the $100 bonus
  • You cannot be: An owner, or joint owner, on a Wells Fargo consumer checking account in the past 6 months, A Wells Fargo team member, A recipient of a consumer checking bonus in the past 12 months
  • A qualifying direct deposit is your salary, pension, Social Security, or other regular recurring monthly income of an accumulated $500 or more

Avoiding Fees

Monthly Fee

The Everyday Checking account comes with a $10 monthly fee. Get the fee waived with one of the following:

  • 10 debit card purchases and/or payments each statement cycle from this checking account, OR
  • Direct deposits totaling $500 or more each statement cycle, OR
  • Maintain a $1,500 minimum daily balance, OR
  • Link checking account to a Wells Fargo Campus ATM or Campus Debit Card

Early Account Termination Fee

Update: This definitely isn’t charged anymore.

In the past, there was always an early account termination fee of $25 if you close your account within six months of opening. It’s being reported (1, 2) that they may have dropped this fee; if true, you can close right after the bonus posts.

Our Verdict

Wells Fargo has offered $100 in the past (and even offered $200 in the past) the main reason that people are interested in the Wells Fargo checking accounts is that they usually want you to have a deposit account relationship with them before approving you for one of their credit cards. They have three cards most people are interested in:

I really like this bonus because the direct deposit is optional and it’s available nationwide. Because of that we’ve added it to our list of the best bank bonuses currently available. We’ve also added it to our database of bonuses.

Hat tip to reader John

83 Responses to [Expired] Wells Fargo $100 Checking Bonus – Available Publicly & Nationwide – Direct Deposit Optional

  1. Ted says:

    Fidelity cash management counts as direct deposit.

    See my comment in the comments here for bonus time line info too

  2. Sa says:

    So, should I wait for the $200 then? Not clear what is your recommendation. Thank you for the food tips.

    • Up to you really, dunno when/if we’ll see the $200 again. If you want to apply for one of their CC’s, I’d just do this offer. It’s churnable after a year so you could always get $200 later.

  3. Miguel M says:

    This must be opened at a branch? Can’t do it online? Darn. And they’re waving the ETF $25 for everyone?

  4. Sa says:

    There appears to be a promo code required when you open this account. The application page auto-populates that field as “PROSQ1”, but check for yourselves.

  5. Sa says:

    Not nationwide! At least the on-line application cannot find my zip code in MA, where they do not seem to have any branches.

  6. P says:

    Does anyone know if “nationwide” includes Hawaii or only continental US and Alaska?

  7. Dan says:

    Anyone ever had any issues funding a new account with money orders? I’m thinking of opening this account and funding with $3-5k in money orders. Would be weird if they accepted them, then closed down the account shortly afterwards for suspicious activity. Just trying to see if anyone have any experience with this?

  8. Fred says:

    whats your recc. on the fastest way to get the 10 purchases? 10x $1 amazon GC’s?

  9. Cal says:

    Does anyone know if Discover or PenFed work for the direct deposit requirement?

  10. Vincent says:

    The fine print of “You cannot be- A recipient of a consumer checking bonus in the past 12 month” worries me!

  11. mark o says:

    Do Citi cards work for funding or do they charge cash advance for banks? Was thinking of using the reserve towards the 10k spending.

  12. Ken says:

    Applied and account conditionally approved. No account info supplied, will wait for hard approval.

  13. Catapult says:

    “At this time, we are unable to complete your application and must refer you to your nearest Wells Fargo branch to open the account…..”

    Resident. Not Citizen.

  14. Jeremiah says:

    Anyone have any idea about how long after opening the account we can apply for one of their cards? I’d really like to pick up the Propel before the end of the month, but I’m not sure how feasible that would be.

  15. Ken says:

    Do I need to wait till the debit card arrives to setup online access? I don’t remember picking usernames or passwords when opening the account.

    • Mark O says:

      I think so…I got the email for online access but no details to set it up. I guess you could call to get your account number but I am just gonna wait till the card comes.

      • Ken says:

        I also received the “congratulations for setting up online access” email, but there’s no username/password to use. I tried the forgot username/password and when I ented my DOB, SSN, and email I get a not found error. I’ll just wait for the card and PIN to show up.

  16. Daniel says:

    Do the debit card purchses have to actually be using the card as debit (and entering the PIN) or can you use it as a credit card over the phone/in store and sign for your purchases? THanks.

    • Ken says:

      The terms say “debit purchases” and not “PIN transactions” so anything should be fair game except for ATM withdrawals of course.

  17. Vince says:

    Though it was said a Citi card would count as CA, I tried it anyway after decreasing CA limit to zero, It went through, it is still pending now but I suppose there should be no problem.
    Hope this helps. Good luck guys.

    • Albert H says:

      Can confirm, used my citi premier card. It codes as a purchase.
      WFB OPEN DEP TO CHK ****************
      Transaction Type: Purchases
      Posted Date: Mar. 10, 2017

  18. Suljaga13 says:

    Opened WF checking on 12/15/2015
    DD $500 from employer on 01/08/16
    Bonus $100 posted today 1/15/2016

    • Mark O says:

      Did you open online or in branch? And if online did you have to fill out the application sheet they mailed you?


  19. Calvin says:

    Is the monthly fee on the 1st month waived by any chance? I don’t want to open with a $1500 deposit, I’m not sure if my DD will process within the first 30 days, and it is a hassle to make 10 debit card purchases in the 1st month to avoid the monthly fee.

  20. Calvin says:

    If you sign up for a wells fargo account online, do you get your checking account number on the same day of signup?

    I want to time the signup so that my direct deposit processes within the first 30 days, and if I have to wait for materials to get mailed to me before I get my checking account number, that will probably push the direct deposit processing out of 30 days from signup.

  21. JJ says:

    My application process was not a normal application process. I tried applying for the account online and got held up at the address. I was using my personal college P.O. box as my mailing address. To confirm I would receive my card I called into my nearest branch. They said I would probably have to come on in any way to sign paperwork (not sure if exactly true, as I have opened other bank accounts online and not needed to do that). The teller transferred me to a banking specialist and I made an appointment to come on in. It was funny because the local WF bank does a lot of promotions to my college and they had the exact same $100 offer only that you needed to do 10 debit card transactions AND direct deposit for $500 total in 2 months. So clearly the nationwide deal was better anyways. I tried using my AMEX OneVIP Serve card to fund the account to see if they would accept the hybrid credit-prepaid card. The transaction went through, but later failed (she said I had funds, but the system didn’t accept it). I thought whatever that is fine, no big deal.

    She told me that she has funded accounts with credit cards for $1,500 plus even though the new limit was $50 and the old limit was $500. I tried to fund with $1,025 ( I also opened up a savings account for $25) and it did not go through. If she was correct with the large credit card funding it must not be available if you have a promotion? Or she lied, she joked a lot saying how I should have her job since I knew a lot more about the specifics of opening the account. Since the $1,025 did not go through I just did what DRofC stated was the max funding with credit card (and minimum balance opening a new account at WF) which was $50. Plus my $25 savings account (the minimum balance to open a savings account). The banker thought that then maybe you can only use credit card to fund the minimum of the new accounts.

    I planned to cancel the account immediately after my $100 hit and I did not want to have 10 debit card transactions to meet the monthly service fee requirement, but she told me that since I am a college student she put note on the account and that it should be fee free until I’m 24 so now I don’t have to cancel it and can build a “relationship” with WF and maybe try to get their propel card. The whole interaction was rather comical to me because it truly did seem like I knew more about the bank than she did (thanks to everyone’s data points). I have been in the credit card points world/churning at 21 years old and have had a credit card since I was 18 (secured college) so my credit score is pretty damn good for someone my age so it was funny to me when she tried to get me to apply for their college student credit card with a maximum $1,000 limit. I politely declined her offer and told her “I am fine” which she thought was just a no, but later found out my array of elite credit cards in my wallet. I told her I would be much more interested in the WF Propel 365 card, but did not apply.

    • Matt says:

      FYI, the fine print on the direct link says that the fee is cut in half (from $10 to $5) if you’re 17-24, not waived entirely. If your college has a deal in place with Wells Fargo, you can link your student ID to their debit card, and avoid the fee that way (not sure if that’s what you did).

      Since it sounds like the associate wasn’t 100% knowledgeable about these promotions, you may want to double-check that monthly fee “note” she put on your account. Wouldn’t want you to have to eat the $5 fee over an employee error.

      • JJ says:

        Thanks for the response Matt. I do belive she mentioned Debit card and student ID together when talking about the free waiver. If not I met the Branch manager who would waive the fee, otherwise I will take my fraternity’s 6-figure balance else where just to spite them.

  22. Calvin says:

    Anyone know what banks, aside from Fidelity, count as a direct deposit?

  23. Ken says:

    Opened account online, got my debit card, PIN, and welcome letter in the mail saying my account is approved. I’m able to login to online banking and see my opening deposit is there. Why did they send me a “consumer account application” then? Do we need to fill out the information again and mail it in? Do you think they’ll close my account if I don’t send it in? Anybody else get it too?

    • JJ says:

      Did you go into branch at all? Or solely online? When I called my local WF they said even if I apply online I would still have to come in and fill paperwork. My guess is that you live too far from a WF and they just sent the “paperwork” for you to fill out. Not sure, worth a call.

    • Mark O says:

      I got it too in the last page of my packet but nothing in the letter says it needs to be filled out…not sure what it is about. I think it is more for it you haven’t done a deposit yet to send it in with the deposit but not sure…maybe someone that has already earned the bonus can shed some light on it.

    • Mark O says:

      Just called and guy said you need to fill it out since we signed up online.

  24. John says:

    Did anyone got a bonus by pruchasing 10 x $0.5 amazon gcs?

  25. chris says:

    Anyone been able to access their account online with just the debit card and pin? I tried but it won’t work and after completing all the information it finally just tells me to call. Very annoying.

  26. Tom says:

    Upon completing the application I received this message:

    Your application has been conditionally approved subject to verification of the information you have provided.

    Please sign, date, and return the Consumer Account Application included in your account information packet (which will arrive in 3 business days).

    Once we have verified your information, we’ll send you the status of your application by email and we’ll follow up with a letter within 2 to 5 business days of our decision.

    Is this typical? The message about them sending me the status of my application makes me think it’s not a done deal. I haven’t done many online checking account openings, so just curious.

    • mark o says:

      Did you fund it with a credit card? I had to fill out the consumer account application (as does everyone who signs up online) but I was approved via email the next day. Maybe if you funded with bank account etc. it is different?

  27. JJ says:

    $100 already posted! Transactions done on 1/19 and promotional bonus posted 1/22!

  28. Ken says:

    Wow, this was the fastest bonus I’ve ever gotten. Has anyone closed their account this quickly? New account bonus stipulates 6 month exclusion, so it’d best to close immediately? Any adverse action for closing in under a month from opening account?

    1/12/16: Opened account
    1/26/16: Last of 10 debit purchases (AZ GCs)
    1/29/16: $100 bonus posts

    • Mark O says:

      I am gonna keep mine open in order to get the propel card….$400 > then churning a bank bonus to me.

      Finished my Amazon GC on 21st paid today….I think they pay out every Friday.

  29. chasinthetiger says:

    10 x 0.50 Amazon GC’s posted 1/21. Bonus showed up today 1/29.

  30. mike says:

    Does the monthly fee hit during the calendar months or by statement closing?

  31. John says:

    Got my bonus today. Opened on 1/12, finished 10 debit card transactions on 1/25 and got the bonus on 1/29.

  32. pcgeek says:

    TYPO: “Expiration Date: February 22, 2015”

  33. Vic says:

    I went to a branch in north cal, and somehow the banker tried so hard (called the number listed here, called back office, and escalated) but still couldn’t find the offer code to open this in branch.

    I left without opening account.

  34. Chris says:

    Not sure what happened. I applied online on 2/14. Everything seemed to go fine. I was “conditionally approved subject to verification of the information youve provided.”

    Today, 2/16, I got an email saying:

    Thank you for your recent online application for a new Wells Fargo deposit account. We appreciate your interest in banking with Wells Fargo.

    At this time, we are unable to complete your application and must refer you to your nearest Wells Fargo branch to open the account. To locate a branch near you, please visit

    I have a mortgage with WF and applied with the same credentials. Not too many inquiries with ChexSystems (<8). Anyone else have problems online?

    • Chris says:

      Just called to figure out what’s going on. It’s a bit strange since they couldn’t find my mortgage even with the account number (what???). With my SSN, they still couldn’t find it, but they did see my application. All they could say was that I was declined, I would get a letter in the mail, and I should talk to a branch manager (before or after getting the letter).

      I’ll probably miss the deadline. This looked like an easy one to get.

  35. Wyle says:

    Data point:
    account opened online 1/18; funded with BofA debit card; waited for WF debit card to setup online account; 10 debit card transactions (including several small AMZN reloads) completed by 2/8; bonus posted 2/11 (a Thursday); first statement posted 2/16.

    Reading the comments and looking back at that Consumer Account Application (which I thought was an ad for a credit card) – I now see it lists the new checking account as the “product” and it appears to also function as a signature card. Guess I should send it in.
    Looking back, when the online app was approved, one of the Next Steps says, “Please sign, date and return the Consumer Account Application …”. Guess I was more focused on “approved”, “bonus offer code linked”, and “account number”.

  36. Wade says:

    I used the card to buy ten $.50 on Amazon and the payments posted 10 days ago, now. How did everyone else do this method and get the bonus so quickly?
    It looks like Amazon is treating my Wells Fargo debit card as a credit card and I can’t find anyway to change that.

    • Wade says:

      Scratch that, asked customer service and they said I met the requirements and the bonus will be deposited sometime with 40 days still. Weird that it’s taking longer for me.

      10 $.50 Amazon digital gift card purchases did it for me.

      • Phong says:

        Hey did you need to change anything when you insert your debit card? I know some people were having trouble because of pinless debit on amazon (not saying with WF).

        • Wade says:

          Amazon actually didn’t give me anything to change. I was only able to enter card details and that as it.

          • Phong says:

            Sorry. I meant that some people have to manually use a link to change their card to pinless debit or non-pinless debit or whatever. I guess it doesn’t really matter if they said you fulfilled requirement without doing anything. Thanks for the reply! I really appreciate the help!

          • sl says:

            same here. also, I thought that this was the case why my bonus didn’t post soon enough. didn’t do any changes, also did not charge debit again. just waited and boom, account credited last friday 2/26. so easy, already closed today! can’t wait for next one…

  37. Chris says:

    I opened the account online successfully, did the 10-use requirement with the debit card, waited a month and still no bonus. Emailed them asking about the bonus and they said they didn’t have any W-9 TIN signature form attached to the account and they can’t give a bonus without that IRS info. Downloaded the form (basically just your SS# and signature), took it down to a local branch where they scan it into my account and now I will email them again to see if I’m good to go for the bonus. So basically, it looks like they will get you into a local branch one way or another. Congrats to those who avoided that! (I think my new minimum for this bank bonus hobby hassle is what it should have been before now: $150)

  38. chris says:

    So after completing the requirements well over 45 days ago and emailing an inquiry as to why no bonus, they said they’ll get back to me in up to “14 business days”. After 14 business days and no word I inquire again and they tell me the offer was a local one in limited regions, nothing they can do and I need to go down to a local branch and let them figure it out. What a crock. Anyone else having this kind of trouble?

  39. John says:

    I opened my checking on Feb 1, opened my Propel on Feb 29, and got my $100 checking bonus on March 10.

    I realize that there is no ET fee, but my understanding is that ETFs are different from a fee related to closing within a short period after receiving the bonus.

    In other words, a bank can have an ETF for opening an account and then closing it shortly afterward even if there was no promotional dollars associated with it.

    Many promotions appear to additionally have tiny fine print somewhere that implies that they can pull your promotional bonus back if you attempt to close early (e.g. before 6 months have elapsed). Again, that’s a slightly different animal from an ETF, which could apply to bank accounts that have no promotion attached.

    My Chase savings promotion was like this, for example.

    QUESTION: Do we know for certain that someone can close can close his Wells Fargo checking three days after receiving the bonus — and do so without penalty?

  40. Ken says:

    I was doing my taxes and just realized that Wells Fargo never sent my wife or myself the 1099 for this $100 bonus. Can someone please post a screenshot of their 1099 with all personal info blanked out?

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