Extra vs Chime

Chime vs Extra

You’ve seen the two brands: Chime and Extra, and you’re wondering which is better. We know that picking between companies is tricky. Luckily, in this case, Extra’s the clear winner.

Both companies offer cards that *in theory* help you build credit; however, Extra’s debit card lets you build credit without all the dangers of a credit card. Even better, you won’t have to open a new bank account to get the ball rolling. (Hint, hint: our competitor’s not so chill.) 

By exploring security, accessibility, and ease of use, we’ll show you just why EXTRA comes out on top. 

What is Extra?

As you know, your credit score is one of the essential factors in your life. If done right, it’ll help you get your future car, apartment, and even house. At Extra, we offer the first credit-building debit card.

We know what you’re thinking: How is that possible? Let’s break it down. 

How Extra’s Card Works

You heard that right. Extra’s debit card helps you build credit.

Once you sign up for your Extra card, we’ll give you a Spend Power based on your bank balance. Here’s where the trick comes in.

Let’s say you’re going to 7/11 for a Slurpee. When you purchase that drink, we spot your order and pay ourselves back the following day – without interest or fees. When the end of the month rolls around, we total all the transactions and report them to the credit bureaus

Pretty clever, huh? 

What is Chime’s Secured Card? 

Unlike Extra, Chime’s Secured Credit Card is just that – a credit card. 

A secured card helps guarantee you through a cash deposit. If you can’t make your payments, the deposit becomes collateral–meaning your deposit acts as your card’s credit limit. If you don’t pay off your monthly credit fees, the card issuer can take money out of your deposit to pay themselves back.

In this way, secured cards are like giving someone your money to prove you have it. Strange, right? You’ll need approval just to spend your own money. 

Chime vs. Extra Card Similarities 

Now that we know what each is let’s put the cards head-to-head and see where they shape up. The cards have some essential differences that keep them distinct, but first, let’s check out their similarities. There are more than you’d think. 

Spend Within Your Means

For both cards, you’ll have to pay for everything. With Chime, your principal payment will be your security deposit, whereas Extra will pull for each purchase. For this reason, both cards act as debit cards but help you build credit. 

Reports to Credit Bureaus

Many say you can’t build credit without a credit card, but that’s not true. Both cards report your purchases to the credit bureaus. Every transaction (like Taco Bell) will build your credit score. 

Nice, right? 

Chime vs Extra

Extra vs. Chime Differences 

While both cards have similarities, a few fundamental differences keep them apart. Follow the distinctions to see which card is best suited for your finances. 

Approval Requirements

Approving credit cards can take time and effort. Chime and Extra use different approval methods. Can you guess which is more efficient than the other? 

With Chime, approval can be time-consuming. If you want a Chime Secured card, you’ll have to open a completely new bank account and deposit at least $200. You’ll transfer the money into a “credit builder secured account,” which will serve as your spending limit. Opening a new bank account can be tiresome. 

At Extra, we’ll do the work for you. You’ll have to link your bank account to Plaid, and they’ll analyze your cash flow. If all is well, we’ll approve your card.

How easy is that? No need to open a new account; with a Plaid-compatible bank account, you’ll be up and running in no time. 

Upfront Payments

An upfront payment can be intimidating. 

Luckily, Extra gives you a spend power based on the money you have in your account, meaning you don’t have to pay us.

Conversely, if you want to establish a spending limit with Chime, you’ll have to pay them off the bat. 

Interest Costs

When it comes to finances, interest can be a significant downside. 

Unfortunately, secured credit cards have interest, meaning you’ll have to pay back more than you initially put down. On the other hand, Extra charges no interest or hidden fees. After paying an upfront membership cost, you won’t have to worry about interest charges. 


Who doesn’t like a reward? 

Extra’s debit card offers an assortment of rewards to help congratulate your credit journey. With our credit building + rewards plan, you can earn up to 1% in points for everyday purchases. Spend your points on anything from Apple AirPods to cool products in our rewards store. 

 Beyond bonuses, we offer an app to track your journey through the credit world and offer 24/7 concierge.

On the other hand, secured cards eliminate the fun by rarely offering rewards. When making purchases, you’ll just get what you get. Maybe this isn’t a dealbreaker, but it doesn’t help their case. 


While both cards report to credit bureaus, there’s a slight distinction. Extra reports to Experian, and Equifax, while Chime also reports to Transunion.

No matter – you’ll still be growing an excellent credit history. 

Debit Card vs. Credit Card

Though they accomplish similar goals, Chime’s Secured Card is technically a credit card. In general, credit comes with dangers. 

Credit cards can lead to overspending, which will cause damage to your credit score. With a secured credit card, your credit limit may be low, meaning your purchases may be limited.

Finally, secured credit cards don’t guarantee upgrades to unsecured cards. If you decide to close your account, your credit score may take a hit. 

By comparison, debit cards make money management easy. 

Extra Card Vs. Chime: The Bottom Line

Ding. Ding. Ding. The fight’s over. You know the score. 

Extra comes out on top. Always. 

Our debit card lets you build credit without all the dangers of a credit card (looking at you, Chime). Even further, Extra offers an easy, hassle-free set-up. Conversely, when you’re using Chime, you’ll have to open a bank account– when it comes time to close it, you may just hurt your credit score. 

So, if you’re looking for the most secure, accessible option, Extra’s your bet. You can trust us to boost your financial game. 

Good news: if you’re looking at an Extra card, you’re making a step toward building credit early. We offer a secure path toward quality credit reports. In the meantime, explore our blog for all things finance. We’ll teach you how to budget accordingly and everything you should know about money.

At Extra, we want to make building credit as simple and stress-free as possible. There’s no better way to start your finance journey.  

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