I’ve had a BankDirect mileage-earning checking account for about as long as I’ve had a blog. It has been a stable place to keep my emergency fund savings, and even with the fees on the account, I was happy to earn AAdvantage miles for my account balance.
I recently closed my BankDirect account, and moved those funds to a Bask Savings account — both Bask and BankDirect are part of Texas Capital Bank, but the value proposition of Bask is much better, as is the user experience.
BankDirect Ending AAdvantage Checking Program
It seems others, including TCB, may feel similarly, as it has just been announced that all miles-earning BankDirect accounts will be closed by August 31st, 2020. Current BankDirect AAdvantage checking account holders have three options:
- Open a new Bask Savings account, so you can continue to earn miles (this is what I’ve done, and what I’d recommend others do)
- Keep your account at Texas Capital Bank, and have it automatically convert to an interest-bearing checking account in September
- Move your funds to another institution
Given the current low-interest rate environment, the earnings rates on the Bask accounts are a great value. Earning one AA mile (which I value at 1.5¢) for every dollar deposited is a terrific return. By my valuation that’s an annualized 1.5% return, versus the current national average interest rate on savings accounts of 0.06% (in fairness, there are some better options out there, but nothing that competes with the overall value proposition of Bask, in my opinion).
Bask sign-up bonuses
In addition to Bask offering no fees (while BankDirect did have account fees) and a great rate of return, Bask is also offering some impressive sign-up bonuses.
These are available to the general public through June 30th, though current BankDirect account holders can still receive the 5,000 mile sign-up bonus through August. There’s really no reason to wait until August however, and opening a Bask account now means you can grab the Feedback bonus, and start the clock on the tiered balance bonuses.
Opening a Bask Savings account
As mentioned above, Bask has a phenomenal website and app, which makes opening an account easy. When I opened my account a few weeks ago, it took less than five minutes.
You have the option to fund your account with an external bank transfer during the onboarding process. If you want to transfer funds from your BankDirect mileage account, you can send a secure message when logged in to your current BankDirect account, or call customer service at 833-260-4320.
BankDirect has been a great way to earn miles for the past decade, but the Bask Savings accounts are a better all-around product. I’m happy to continue earning miles instead of interest for my emergency fund, and there’s no reason not to switch ahead of the forced migration in September.
If you don’t yet have a Bask account, I’d recommend opening one.