A question I commonly see on the Facebook groups is "what bank should I switch to?" as well as questions about direct deposit, what banks are nearby, and more. In this post I will address which banks are nearby, alternatives to using physical ATMs and bank branches, and what you'll need to do to get direct deposit.
What banks are nearby?
If you're limited to the bus route, there aren't a lof of options for banks, only two actually. Chase bank has a partnership with Disney so there are many of them in the area, and it's probably the best solution for you. Also, Disney has it's own credit union called Partners, and they have branches in backstage areas, so that makes them very easy to use. If you happen to have a car, there is also a Bank of America nearby. I don't think you need to have one of these banks, though, there are other alternatives to having a physical branch location, or even ATM nearby.
What if my bank isn't nearby?
A lof of people think they should switch to a new bank if their bank isn't nearby, but that's not necessary. I had no nearby bank branches or ATMs during my program but I got along just fine. Your paychecks will probably be automatically deposited into your account (it's pretty much the only option) through direct deposit, and most large banks have online programs and apps that allow you to deposit checks and transfer funds between checking and savings accounts. If you need to withdraw cash, stores like Walgreens, Publix, and Walmart (and lots more!) offer cashback up to $40 when you make a purchase with your debit card. The only thing you won't be able to do without an ATM is deposit cash, but I never encountered the need to do that, since I never got any cash any way except from intentionally withdrawing it via cash back.
How does Direct Deposit work?
Direct Deposit is amazing! If you have direct deposit set up, your paycheck will be automatically deposited into your account evey Thursday (EPCOT = Every Paycheck Comes On Thursday), and are accessible to spend that day, some banks take a couple days to process it so it might come on Friday or Saturday, but I don't know anyone who had that issue, most banks are very efficient with direct deposit now. You'll be sent a new hire paperwork packet 4-5 weeks before your program starts and one of those forms will be for direct deposit. You'll need your account's routing number and account numbers. You can get a form with both of these from your bank, or google your bank's name and "routing and account numbers" to find directions to find them. If you do it online, there will be no need to bring a voided check to check-in, that used to be a requirement, but not anymore since it's all done online. If you choose not to use direct deposit, you'll be given a payroll card, which works much like a debit card, but I'm not sure if it has capabilities to check your balance or withdraw cash either from direct deposit or cash back, in general I highly recommend using direct deposit over a payroll card.
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