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Where to Order Checks? Online and Retailers

Where to Order Checks
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updated: July 3, 2024

Paper checks are no longer the primary means of moving funds from your bank account. Nevertheless, they remain useful for paying utilities and other bills, compensating employees, and satisfying debts between friends. Unfortunately, they can be a bit pricey.

Let’s examine where to order checks inexpensively and how you may even be able to score them for free.

Best places to order checks

Banks and credit unions that offer free checks

Annoyingly, banks tend to charge the highest prices for personal checks. There are exceptions, but the convenience of ordering from your bank comes at a cost.

Below are the best major banks and credit unions for free checks, though, as a general rule, anything but a standard check won’t be free. In other words, you'll probably have to pay if you’ve chosen a spiffy design instead of a regular, nondescript check.

  • Ally. All members can order free checks online, but only in quantities of 20 checks.
  • Axos Bank. Golden Checking accountholders (ages 55+) receive one free 40-pack of checks every six months.
  • Chase. Your checks are free with Premier Plus or Sapphire Checking.
  • Discover Bank. Discover is famous for its low fees, including for paper checks.
  • First Citizens Bank. Prestige checking account holders get unlimited free checks with exclusive designs, while Premier checking accounts only get free checks on the first order.
  • Navy Federal Credit Union. Only those with family ties to the armed forces are eligible to join.
  • SoFi Money account. SoFi doesn’t have physical branches, as it is a fully online bank, but you can have checks shipped for free.
  • Wells Fargo. Those with Prime Checking or Premier Checking will qualify for free paper checks.

Best places to order checks online

Online printers

If your bank doesn’t offer checks for free, several online printing services can create them for you, typically at a lower price than most banks charge.

  • Vistaprint. The charge is $15 for 150 single checks, or about 10 cents a check. If you order as many as 600, the price drops to 7 cents each.
  • Check Advantage. You pay $17.45 for 150 single checks (about 11.5 cents a check) and $21.20 for a box of 120 duplicate checks (about 17.5 cents each).
  • Check Gallery. The cost is $18.99 for a box of 80 single checks (nearly 24 cents a check) and $22.99 for a box of 80 duplicate checks (nearly 29 cents each).
  • Checks.com. The cheapest of the four, it only charges $5.95 for a box of 80 single checks (about 7 cents per check) and $6.95 for a box of 80 duplicate checks (just under 9 cents each).

Retailers

Common grocery stores and warehouses also offer paper check services.

  • Costco (Executive Member). The current rate is $17.99 for 250 single checks (about 7 cents per check) and $18.38 for 200 duplicate checks (just over 9 cents each).
  • Office Depot. These are pricey at $12.49 for a box of 60 single checks (about 21 cents per check).
  • Sam’s Club. These are a steal at $17.38 for 480 single checks(about 3.5 cents per check) and $18.85 for 330 duplicate checks (just under 6 cents each).
  • Walmart. You pay $9.81 for 120 single checks (about 8 cents per check) and $11.28 for 120 duplicate checks (just under 9.5 cents each).

How can I get checks for cheaper?

As you can see, these small rectangular pieces of paper aren’t exactly inexpensive. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to reduce your out-of-pocket expenses.

Order before you need them

By planning ahead and ordering checks before you need another batch, you can take the time you need to find the lowest price and not be left scrambling at the last minute.

Print your own checks

It’s perfectly legal to print your own checks, as long as each one contains the following information: account and routing number, signature, date, and amount.

Services such as Checkeeper provide a template and allow you to print checks as often as you like. You’ll pay $14.99 per month, though, so you’ll need to write a lot of checks for this to be worth it (though, admittedly, the service does come with other goodies, such as the ability to connect QuickBooks Online).

Submit a bulk order

Generally, the more checks you buy, the less you’ll pay per check. Order for the foreseeable future, and you’ll get a noticeable discount.

Decline the fancy graphics

You'll pay extra if you want hearts, stars, horseshoes, clovers, or blue moons on your checks. Text-only checks will give you the biggest value for your money, so forego the personalized graphics.

How to place a check order

Decide on an adequate number of checks

Do you rarely write checks and just need one occasionally? Or do you find yourself blowing through checkbooks every month? It’s generally better to order more checks than you think you’ll need.

Determine what type of check you want

If you’re after a standard blue check, you can bet that everyone will offer it. However, if you want something more, such as a high-security check or a specific theme (Disney, travel, butterflies, etc.), you may need to do some shopping to see who offers your ideal check.

Price out different websites

The price difference between retailers that sell checks can be surprising. Once you know what you’re after, shop for the cheapest seller.

Enter your personal information

When you buy checks, you can add personal information, such as your home address and phone number, as well as business details if you operate a sole proprietorship (or something bigger).

Alternatives to checks

Checks aren’t the only way to make a payment or transfer money to someone else. Consider the following alternatives:

  • ACH transfers. You can use an ACH transfer to move money from your bank account to another bank account if you have the receiver’s routing and account number.
  • Credit and debit cards. If you’re still paying at the supermarket with a check, you should consider switching to a credit or debit card. It’s faster and more secure, and you can even earn rewards for your spending.
  • P2P payment apps. Money transfer and payment apps, such as Venmo and PayPal, allow you to transfer funds from a bank account to someone else for free. You can even use a credit card to transfer funds, though there’s a fee, often around 3%.

TIME Stamp: Getting paper checks at a discount or even free is not difficult

Paper checks may no longer be convenient, but they aren’t completely obsolete either. You can cut down on your check costs by banking with an institution that offers free checks, printing them yourself, or finding a major retailer that issues checks at a discount.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Can I print my own personal checks?

Yes. However, it’s possible that some entities won’t accept them, as the checks won’t have the same watermarks and ink used with bank-issued checks. Nevertheless, the checks you print are valid.

What do you need on your checks?

For a check to be valid, it must include a date, signature, dollar amount paid, bank routing number, and checking account number.

What are the safe places to shop for checks?

Generally, it’s quite safe to shop for checks. Though getting them from your bank may be more customary, there’s no reason not to shop at online printers and retailers.

The information presented here is created independently from the TIME editorial staff. To learn more, see our About page.

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