Personal Finance

How to Deposit Cash: Local Banks, ATMs, and Online Banks

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If you need to deposit cash into your bank account, you have several options, including your local bank branch or an ATM that accepts deposits. While it isn’t possible to make deposits directly to most online banks, there are often workarounds, like using a money order or an in-network ATM.

Although many financial transactions are now cash-free and lots of people keep track of their finances digitally, cash is still important for many individuals.

When you need to deposit cash to your checking or savings account, there are a number of safe and convenient options, including local bank branches and certain ATMs. Online banks don’t usually have a straightforward way to deposit cash, but there are a few ways to get cash into your account even without a physical bank branch.

Jump ahead to learn more about how to deposit cash in your specific situation:

  • How to Deposit Cash at a Bank
  • How to Deposit Cash in an ATM
  • How to Deposit Cash With an Online Bank

How to Deposit Cash at a Bank

If you belong to a regional or national bank, you can make a deposit at any branch. If you are part of a credit union, you can make a deposit at your home credit union or another branch if your credit union is part of a larger network.

Making a cash deposit at a local bank branch or credit union takes just a few steps:

  • Fill out a deposit slip with your account number.
  • Place your cash and deposit slip in an envelope.
  • Hand your envelope to one of the tellers.

After making a cash deposit at a physical bank or credit union, the cash will be counted and the funds will become available in your account immediately in most cases.


If you aren’t able to get to your bank’s branch for any reason, you may be able to make a deposit at an ATM instead.

How to Deposit Cash in an ATM

Many banks allow customers to deposit cash directly in an ATM, but the process varies from bank to bank. Nowadays, depositing cash in an ATM is generally as simple as using your debit card at an ATM and placing the cash directly inside. That said, there are a few things to keep in mind when making cash deposits at an ATM.


Some ATMs Require Deposit Slips

Each bank has different ATMs, and some require a deposit slip or envelope for cash deposits. Make sure to read the ATM prompts carefully and use a deposit slip to note your account information and deposit amount if necessary.

Make Sure to Count Your Cash

If your bank allows for cash to be deposited directly into an ATM with no envelope, make sure to count your cash before placing it in the machine. While ATMs are generally accurate, they can occasionally make mistakes in counting and scanning bills. If you know the correct amount ahead of time, you can verify that the ATM has counted correctly after making your deposit.

If there are any issues, make sure to note the ATM’s location and the time that the mistake occurred to help resolve the problem.

Funds Aren’t Available Immediately

Unlike deposits made with tellers, the funds from cash deposits at ATMs are not always available immediately. Funds can take more than one business day to show up in your account, so be mindful of this if you need the money in your account right away. In general, ATMs directly outside of bank branches will process funds to your account more quickly.

Even if you have an online bank with no physical locations, there are still options for depositing cash.

How to Deposit Cash With an Online Bank

If you have an online bank with no physical locations, there are still options for getting cash into your account, but the process will vary based on your bank and specific circumstances.


Try some of the following methods as alternative ways to get cash into your online bank account.

Transfer from Another Bank Account

If you have another bank account with physical branches, you could deposit the money in person, then make a transfer to your online bank account.

Use a Prepaid Debit Card

Some prepaid debit cards can be loaded with cash at retail stores. After loading cash, you can use the debit card’s online portal to transfer money electronically to your online bank account. That said, some prepaid debit cards involve fees, so you’ll want to be mindful if making small deposits.

Purchase a Money Order

You can purchase a money order at the post office as well as other locations, which allows you to send your cash deposit electronically to your account. Money orders may require a flat or percentage fee, so check in advance whether this is the right approach for you.

Find an In-Network ATM

Many online banks include a network of ATMs, which you can use to make a cash deposit directly to your account. Look into whether this is a possibility for your particular bank.

No matter how you deposit cash, make sure that you account for the funds when managing your budget.

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