Blog entry

Operation Bank Switch: Complete

Have you really ever noticed how much your bank charges you in fees? Because if you are like me and my wife we were spending about $50 - $60 a month on regular banking fees (See below of breakdown of fees) and even more if one of the accounts dropped into overdraft by even a $1.

About 10 years I became a client of ING Direct and opened a High Interest Savings account. ING continues to pay about 2% or more interest on any savings which is much higher than the norm for the big five Canadian banks. Over those 10 years there was not much more that you could do with a ING Bank account but transfer money into your savings and than later came the ING Mortgage, but most recently (last fall) came the ING Direct Thrive Chequing Account.

In the fall of 2010 I was one of the lucky 10,000 people who got to be in the test group for the Thrive Chequing account. I received my nice new debit card and a few weeks later received my PIN in the mail. I started to transfer money into the new chequing account and started using the debit card around the city, and paying bills online. But I was still a bit leery about moving my payroll and all of my banking to ING since this was still a new service ING was providing. I done a couple blogs (Post 1, Post 2) on my first impressions of the service and some things that ING needed to focus a bit more on.

That was than and this is now:

Since that time last fall, the Thrive chequing is now open to all Canadians. Jodi was able to sign-up for an account in March and than we were able to create a joint chequing account together. Next came the fun steps to move over our pay roll, direct deposits and direct debts from our CIBC accounts to the newly created ING Thrive accounts without causing any overdraft issues with CIBC and having money in both.

So first we moved Jodi's pay over to the new joint Thrive account (JTA) (FREE money tip: ING gave her a $100 bonus for the pay roll change), and changed all direct debts to the JTA except for the mortgage payment. Next up change any direct deposit information with such places as Sun Life, Gov. of Canada and Great West Life for those times when you may get money from somewhere else. (Helpful Note:  Do a search with your current bank (CIBC for me) for the past year to see what gets deposited and debited from your account. This will help you in the move) After about a month with Jodi's pay being deposited into Thrive, I brought the switch form to my HR department to have my pay roll changed to Thrive and called the bank to have the mortgage bank details changed to the new Thrive account. It now has been about three weeks since everything has been changed to Thrive and we couldn't be happier with the savings and I also got the $100 bonus for changing my payroll to Thrive.

Helpful Note: ING Direct with help you with changing your banking to them even as much not to have any debts declined. Though I did not take use of this service.

Is this your Bank?

Old CIBC Fees broken down, for our normal account usage:

  • $12.95 per month for 3 accounts = $38.85
  • $1.50 per use bank machine fee (about 8 a month each) = $24.00
  • ~$62.95 a month = $755.40 a year
That's $755.40 a year that can be going into your savings with an ING Direct Thrive chequing account.

The perks of bleeding Orange with Thrive:
Here is just a small list of what you will receive when you bank with ING Direct for your chequing needs:

  • No Fee Chequing Account;
  • 50 Free Cheques;
  • Pays Interest: $0.00 - $49,999.99: 0.25%, take a look at what you get now with the big five;
  • Free email alerts for everything from, debts, deposits, overdrafts and much more;
  • Free ATM access at over 2500 across the country, you'll be surprised at how many there are;
  • Free overdraft or Whoops protection as ING calls it for up to $250, meaning you'll never be shorted changed; 
  • Free mobile banking, not only free but the best mobile banking;
  • Free email money transfers offer an easy, secure and free way to send money to anyone;
  • Free Drafts.
Some things that I still would like ING to provide sometime in the future:
  • Ability to 'Save the Rest'. Just like what ScotiaBank does where you can have your debit purchases rounded up to a specific dollar amount and placed in a savings account;
  • More FREE Cheques than the first FREE 50. Yes, I use cheques quite often;
  • Ability to add more than one chequing account to the client card;
  • Ability to add a savings account to the the ING client card;
  • A Visa or MasterCard. I just moved from a CIBC Visa to a MBNA Mastercard since CIBC would not reduce my interest rate after being a customer for ~15 years (thats a whole new blog at some point).

Savings with a twist of easy:
I now have five opened savings accounts that I deposit money into automatically from my Thrive account every two weeks. These were all a breeze to set-up within 10 minuets and you can name them what ever you want. I have a emergency fund, vacation, pet fund, personal savings and a joint savings, but just remember you can only open five as I found out after trying to open more than five.

ING pays you to be a client: 
What other bank in the industry pays you to become a customer? Well the answer to that is easy, NONE. When you sign up for an account at ING Direct and use another customers ORANGE KEY you will both get $25, no strings attached. But the FREE money does not stop there, when you are ready to move your payroll into your ING Direct Thrive Chequing account, they will give you an additional $100 just to say thanks. Now I'm not saying you have to sign up with my ORANGE KEY but I would certainly love to get the bonus $25 just like you. My ORANGE KEY is: 14477247S1.

On the Go and Mobile:


I haven't been a mobile user for very long, if you must know its only been since December 2010. I never seen the need for people to reach me where ever I was. This changed when I bought my first 'Smart Phone' a Google Nexus S powered by Android. Since getting the device I have now been using it more than my laptop and I have come accustom to wanting apps that provide me access to anything on the go. I was sadly disappointed at the offering from CIBC since it was nil, but happily excited to see ING Directs offering in this field. ING has come to the forefront with technology and had provided the best mobile app I have seen for all platforms giving you easy access to your account and money anywhere at anytime.    

What else can Orange do for you?
ING Direct also provides other services outside of the Savings and Thrive Chequing accounts that I have explained, being very competitive in all of them:

  • Mortgages;
  • Mutual Funds;
  • US Dollar Saving Accounts;
  • RRSP's;
  • RESP's;
  • TFSA's;
  • GIC's;
  • Business Accounts;
  • and I'm sure you'll others in the future.

Go ahead view the short video about ING Direct Thrive Chequing and sign-up today:

So there you have it how we moved all of our banking to ING Direct and have been saving all those banking fees eversince. Just remember if you are new and signing up use the following ORANGE KEY: 14477247S1

Well time for bed and dreaming about all of the savings I'm getting from ING. :-)



On the Subject of Me

I am a husband, father, dog owner, technology enthusiast with a knack for saving money through technology. I write in a personal style to connect with readers.

This site is my place on the web that I have had since about 1995 (view old versions) when I first learnt HTML. Its a place of ramblings, family, finance, politics and much more.

All thoughts, ramblings, blogs, articles, tweets and anything is strictly my point of view.

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