eChecks move money from your bank account to your poker account with nobody in the middle. They work sort of like traditional checks but involve no paper and are processed must faster. In fact, most eCheck services process payments instantly.
Note to USA Players: Poker sites that serve the US market no longer accept eCheck deposits. Banking rules in the US prohibit financial institutions from processing payments to offshore poker sites and banks can easily see the intended destination of direct deposit methods like the eCheck.
If you live in the US and are looking for an easy way to fund your account, you should instead try depositing with a credit or debit card. Payment processors are much better about approving credit card deposits than eChecks.
The term “eCheck” has fallen out of favor in recent years, but the deposit method it describes is still alive and well under various names. Online poker sites have a variety of similar banking options that work in the same way as eChecks. Some of them use your online banking’s bill pay feature while others just transfer the money on your behalf without revealing your banking details to the poker site.
There are a myriad of deposit methods that all fall under the broad “eCheck” category and the exact list varies from one poker site to the next. Below is a brief overview of some of the more popular eCheck-type of services. Your site may offer others in addition to these, but you’ll see that they all follow the same basic idea.
UseMyFunds: Available in 55 countries and allows you to use your existing online banking account to approve payments to poker sites. UseMyFunds allows you to choose an amount to deposit and then redirects you to a secure page where you log in to your online banking account to verify the payment. The money will be moved to your poker account instantly.
Instadebit: Instadebit bills itself as “just like a cheque, but online.” You will need to sign up for an Instadebit account the first time you use it, but it does not act as an e-wallet. When you make a deposit, you’ll be asked to log in to your Instadebit account and approve the transaction. Your money is then moved straight from your bank account to your poker account.
Fast Bank Transfer: Also called “local bank transfer,” this method can be used online via your existing internet banking account. You can also make deposits at supported banks in person or over the phone with your bank.
Przelewy24: This is an instant banking method available to Polish poker players. It accepts transfers from most banking institutions in Poland and all deposits are processed instantly.
Sofortüberweisung: Similar to Przelewy24 but tailored for German poker players.
TrustPay: Same as above but tailored for those in Eastern European countries.
iDebit: Allows you to make instant direct-banking deposits online without a credit or debit card. This deposit method is available to players in Australia, Austria, Canada, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Sweden and the UK.
Why You’ll Like eChecks
eChecks are all about convenience. It’s tough to think of a deposit method that’s easier to manage than the trusty eCheck. Convenience is definitely the biggest selling point of this particular banking option.
In the past, eChecks required you to type in your checking account and routing numbers for approval. This naturally led to safety concerns among consumers, but most services today don’t ask for that information. Most services now have you log in to your internet banking account to approve the payment. Not only is this more secure, but it requires less work on your part.
Speed can be either an advantage or disadvantage depending on which service you use exactly. Most direct bank services work immediately but you’ll want to check with the poker site in question if you’re unsure. Some types of eCheck services can take up to five business days.
Why You Might Not
It’s harder to keep your bankroll money separate from your other money. One of the reasons I like to use e-wallets such as PayPal and Skrill is because they allow me to keep my bankroll in an entirely different location than the rest of my money. This makes it easier to keep track of my bankroll, treat it like a bankroll and not be tempted to spend it along with my normal living money.
The way eChecks take money and move it directly from your bank account means you just have to throw all your bankroll money into your checking account and keep track of it mentally. It helps to have actual, physical separation – at least it does for me.