The online gambling world offers plenty of banking options. Credit cards, cryptocurrencies, debit cards, e-wallets, and prepaid cards are some of the available deposit methods.
However, few options are as convenient as moving money directly to and from a banking account. This scenario eliminates any extra middlemen standing between you and your bank account.
ACH (a.k.a. eCheck) and bank transfer are two such methods. Both allow for moving money to and from your bank.
But what’s the difference between them? I’m going to discuss this matter by covering the intricacies of eChecks and bank transfers, along with their strengths and weaknesses.
What Is ACH?
ACH stands for “automated clearing house,” which is a network that allows for money to be moved between banks. This term covers multiple types of transfers, including bill payments, direct deposits (from employers), fund transfers, and person-to-person payments.
An ACH Transfer can take place in two ways:
- ACH – You can “push” money to either your account or family members’ and friends’ accounts. Venmo, for example, allows for these debit-type payments.
- Debit – Money is “pulled” from your account. Such payments are often recurring, allowing the recipient to automatically deduct what they’re owed from an account each month.
I’ve never heard of an online casino that lets you set up recurring transactions. Therefore, you’ll be using credit-style eChecks in the internet gambling world.
Assuming you could set up debit-style transactions, then your gaming deposits would be processed by the next business day at the latest. Again, though, you’ll be using credit ACH transactions at online gambling sites.
The National Automated Clearing House Association (NACHA) sets the rules regarding ACH. This trade group oversees the network and allows for same-day processing in some situations.
However, you’re unlikely to come across such a scenario in the gambling world. Even if you could get same-day ACH, you’d have to pay an expediting fee to banks.
The good news about credit-type eChecks is that they’re cheap, if not free. They’re either completely free to send, or they require around a $1 fee.
What Is a Bank Transfer?
A bank transfer (a.k.a. wire transfer) is a fast, secure way to move money. The process of sending a wire transfer isn’t difficult, but you may have trouble gathering the necessary information and providing it in the correct format.
When you use a bank wire, the money lands in your account immediately. You can’t stop or cancel a payment unless the decision is made within the short timeframe before it’s deposited.
That said, you want to be completely sure you’re dealing with a reputable gambling site before sending a bank transfer.
The two types of wire transfers include:
- A transfer between banks through a standard bank network.
- An electronic payment service, such as Western Union, that may or may not involve a bank account.
As you can see, a bank transfer is a specific type of wire transfer. In this case, you’re sending electronic funds from your bank account to another person’s account.
A wire transfer service, meanwhile, can either involve sending electronic funds or cash. You can bring cash to a Western Union agent, for example, and the recipient can be given cash once the transfer is completed.
Of course, the focus of this section is bank transfers. Therefore, I’ll only discuss such payments throughout the rest of this section.
The key information that you need to complete a bank transfer includes:
- Recipient’s bank name
- Recipient bank’s American Bankers Association (ABA) routing number
- Recipient’s bank account number
You may need more info than this, depending upon your bank. However, these are the main aspects you need before completing such a payment.
You must ask the recipient to supply their details. The bank agent you’re dealing with can help if anything is missing.
A common piece of advice is to never wire money based on instructions provided in an email. After all, a hacker could intercept your message and change the recipient’s details so they receive the payment instead.
Also, international bank transfers require a swift code. When dealing with an offshore gambling site, you need to get the swift code before sending payment.
How Do These Options Differ for Online Gambling Deposits?
A bank transfer and ACH have some obvious similarities. However, they also have key differences that set them apart when it comes to making internet gambling deposits.
Bank Transfers Are Faster
ACH isn’t the most convenient way to fund your gambling account. Such transfers can take two to three days to complete, because they’re processed in batches, rather than right after being requested.
An eCheck, in contrast, is processed almost immediately. The casino receives the deposit right away, because there’s no hold put on the funds.
EChecks Are Cheaper
Oftentimes, ACH doesn’t cost anything to send or receive. If there is a cost, the sender may have to pay a dollar or less.
Bank transfers, on the other hand, do come with notable charges. You’ll pay between $10 and $35 to send a wire in many cases.
The recipient may even have to pay a fee when smaller bank/wire institutions are involved. Of course, most online casinos don’t accept payment through such services.
ACH Is Safer to Use
One big advantage of eChecks is that they can be reversed in the case of error or fraud. You can contact your bank if something is fishy, and they’ll determine whether or not to reverse the charge.
In short, you need to ensure you’re dealing with a reputable casino before sending funds. You have no chance of getting the money back once the deposit clears.
Bank Transfers and EChecks Have Different Common Uses
Both ACH and bank transfers can be used to fund an online gambling account. However, they’re commonly used in different arenas outside of the gambling world.
eChecks are the best option for recurring transactions. For example, you may schedule automatic car or student-loan payments with ACH.
Bank transfers are used for quicker transactions. If you know somebody who needs money immediately, you can send a bank wire.
You may want to think about what services you like using outside of online gaming. This way, you’ll have a more seamless transition when making casino deposits.
Should You Deposit With ACH or Bank Transfer?
Whether you use ACH or a bank transfer to deposit at gambling sites depends upon the desired speed. Are you feening for real money online gambling now, or can you wait a few days?
Bank transfer allows for quicker deposits. Therefore, it’s the best option when speed is the most important factor.
Hopefully, though, you’re fine with waiting a couple of days. ACH may be slower than a bank transfer, but it’s cheaper, easier to use, and safer.
You don’t have to pay anything to send eChecks in many cases. You can easily use this service just by providing your checking account details. EChecks can also be reversed within a reasonable timeframe if sent to a fraudulent casino.
That said, ACH is the superior option in most cases. Bank transfers are only useful when you want to make quick deposits and don’t mind the high fees.
Bank transfers and eChecks are just two of the many ways you can deposit at internet casinos. That said, they have a lot of competition when it comes to online gambling.
But the key advantage to both options is that they can be used to send money directly to a gaming site. No other middleman is involved (e.g. e-wallet), nor do you have to visit a physical location (e.g. prepaid card).
That said, ACH and bank wires are each solid ways to make a gambling deposit. But you also have to consider the differences between each.
An eCheck is safer, cheaper (usually free), and more convenient. Honestly, you should always use ACH over bank transfers when it comes to internet gambling.
The only time that a bank transfer makes sense is if you want quicker funding. But in