Chime, like any bank account, can accept refunds on any purchases you've made. If you're taking merchandise back to a store and would like the money returned, the store will have to oblige. Often the only restrictions in place with refunds will be that the money has to go back into the account that originally paid for it. That's entirely possible with Chime since you can have funds in the account itself. Not just the linked ones. However, returns are sometimes messy, which is why we've put together the following explanation of how long it takes to refund money to a Chime account.
Chime's official refund policy states it will take between two and four days for merchandise returns to be processed. However, some customers have experienced waiting times of up to six days with their Chime bank account.
Getting a Refund on Your Chime Account
Most retailers offer customers two options with refunds. They'll either give you store credit to spend, or they'll offer to put the money you spent back into the account you spent it from. Part of the reason they offer in-store credit is because of the cost of refunds to their business. Unfortunately, if you didn't use your Chime account to buy the merchandise, you almost certainly can't have the refund processed into it.
However, if you did use Chime to buy the merchandise, the process should be straightforward. The store clerk will ask you for the card for the account you purchased on. This is when you'll need to present your Chime debit card. Once the return is complete, the money will be processed and added back into your Chime account.
If you're in your overdraft on your Chime account, then the return will automatically be applied to your account and pay off as much of the overdraft as possible. This is Chime's standard practice with overdrafts. You can read more about your Chime overdraft here.
Why are Refund Times on Returns so Long?
Any merchandise return will take a few days to process for several reasons.
The first is that the merchant needs to process the return internally. This isn't an instant process. They'll wait until the end of the trading day when they cash up before they put the return into their accounting system. As a result, the return can take a day or two even to be processed at this point. Some retailers don't even process returns until the end of the week.
The second reason a merchandise refund can take so long is because of the merchant's bank. With so many transactions to process, the merchant's bank operates slower than normal accounts. This means that your refund will be part of a process within the bank. It may be processed quickly or could be much slower. It simply depends on how the bank handles refunds.
The third and final reason that merchandise returns can take a while to process is because of your bank. Every bank handles returns differently. They have various fraud checks in place to ensure that money is being moved between accounts legitimately. These checks are what slows down the handling of your money. If your bank also has a standard policy of available cash taking one day to appear, it adds another day to the entire process.
With Chime, there is a standard waiting period of between two and four days for returns. However, there are examples of people waiting as long as six days for a return. As I've mentioned above, this is due to the internal processes of each merchant and bank. You may make a return on a Monday, but if the merchant doesn't process it until the following Friday, the waiting period doesn't begin until then for your refund.
To summarize, it's straightforward to get a refund on your Chime account. All you need to do is head back to the store you purchased the merchandise from and request the return. As long as you bought the goods with your Chime account, you will receive the funds within four days of the refund being processed.