How to link your bank account to Google Wallet

Google Wallet makes it easy to use your bank account to pay — here's how to set it up

ACU — Google Wallet

Google Wallet, as our very own Phil says, "was born from the idea that it should be easy to pay for things with your phone." Google Wallet does make that pretty easy, especially when you have your bank account linked to it.

I think of Google Wallet as acting like a debit or credit card sometimes, at least in the sense that it allows you to send and receive money to and from other businesses and individuals. It particularly acts this way if you transfer money to and from your Google Wallet Balance, which allows you to make purchases from some brick and mortar retailers that accept Google Wallet "tap and pay". A good number of online retailers also accept Google Wallet. All are made possible with your bank account linked to Google Wallet.

Here's what you need to do to set things up.

Step 1: Hit the hamburger menu

Wallet hamburger menu

In the Google Wallet app, Select those three horizontal lines next to the Google Wallet logo (or the "hamburger menu"). You should see this at the top of the screen when you open the Google Wallet app, and from most other screens within the app.

Step 2: Select "Cards and accounts"

Wallet--Cards and accounts

You should see a menu like this next. Go ahead and select "Cards and accounts."

Step 3: Hit "Link bank account"

Wallet--link bank account

Next, you should see a screen where it lists credit and debit cards you've linked to Google Wallet. Underneath the section about the cards, you'll see an option to link your bank account. Select that option.

Step 4: Enter bank account information

Wallet--enter bank account information

You'll now be able to enter your bank account information. You'll be asked whether your account is a checking or a savings account. You'll also be asked for the name on your account, as well as the routing and account numbers that correspond with your bank account.

Step 5: Request challenge deposit

Wallet--send challenge deposit

This is where things get kind of fun, as you can receive money from Google! OK, so it's not very much, but it's still kind of cool.

To verify your account, Google will make a small deposit (for $1 or less). Within a few days after you select "Send challenge deposit," you should get your money.

After you select "Send challenge deposit," you'll see another screen explaining that Google will email you when the deposit is complete. The screen also explains that you should return to the Google Wallet app after you get your deposit to enter how much money you received from your deposit, which completes the account verification.

Step 6: Go back to Google Wallet

Wallet complete bank account linking

Google may say that the deposit will take 2-3 days to go through, but it went through the next day for me. Keep an eye on your bank account. The deposit went through before I got a confirmation email from Google.

Go back to Google Wallet. Scroll down a little bit until you see the option to complete linking your bank account by entering your deposit amount.

Step 7: Enter deposit amount, select "Verify"

Wallet verify account

Go ahead and enter how much money you received here and select "Verify."

Once you do that, you'll be taken back to Google Wallet's main screen. Now you have a bank account linked to Google Wallet!

Jordan Miera
  • I have my debit card linked to Google wallet. If i link my bank account and remove my debit card(its tied to the same bank account) Can i still do tap and pay?? Linking bank account is better since there wont be a 2.9% fee for adding money to wallet card.
  • Yes you can tap and pay with bank account. I do it. Initially I did it to remove the fee since I use by Google wallet card daily.
  • I'm not sure I'm following you guys regarding the fees. I always have a $0.00 wallet balance but I use gWallet tap and pay almost daily. My selected card is one of my debit cards and I've never been charged any fee (that I know of...). What's the point of adding money when it's linked to a debit card?
  • If you have a physical Google wallet card too you have to add money to it. Didn't take out of bank account. Plus sending money to family is free if you use bank account
  • *only useful if you're an American. Posted via Android Central App
  • Tits on a fish app like Google voice. America is just getting chip and pin like the rest of the world. Ease over security Posted via Android Central App
  • Why anybody would want to link their account and have another potential loophole to get your money stolen is beyond me. Posted via Android Central App
  • +1 Posted via the Android Central App
  • +1. Just because you can doesn't mean you should.
  • +1
    this is why I only use gold and I have it buried somewhere no one will ever find it... Posted from the Avengers: Age of Droid Ultra
  • +1.....I was thinking the same thing. Sent from my Verizon LG G3
  • Using tap and pay at mcdonalds, the cashier asked me "what if somebody steals your phone?" Well if it's more than 30-ish feet away from me, it will require a pin to unlock and use. If I notice my phone is missing, I can use any other phone or computer to lock it down and freeze the account, 24/7. My debit card doesn't do any of that. Which one is a larger security risk?
  • More secure Posted via Android Central App
  • I wanna link my bank account to google wallet,so that I can earn Money
  • I wanna make online money
    i wanna be Rich
    many things on mu mind
    wanna connec my bank account to Facebook account and earn Money
  • Credit card only. No link to real money. Posted via Android Central App
  • +1 Exactly! That way if something goes awry, it doesn't come directly out of your own pocket.
  • If its a debit card it sure does! Google wallet is dead to me unless they can link to a credit card only
  • You can link it to a credit card...
  • Same. I have a credit card and debit cards available to use for tap and pay. If anything goes wrong I can take it up with Google and my CC/DC companies. Extra level of protection. My debit cards are linked to my bank accounts, obviously, so why would I want to lose that extra layer of protection by linking Wallet directly to my bank account?
  • There is no real money anymore, it's all ones and zeroes Posted from the Avengers: Age of Droid Ultra
  • Get the physical Google card. Same liability as a credit card or debit card I.e. none. Posted via my OnePlus One!
  • If you have online banking you can skip most of the latter steps like I did with bank of America. Just enter your online id and password and get verified in about 30 seconds. Just did this the other day so I wouldn't be charged for all the fantasy football monies I'm forking over to the commish for the start of the season. Love Google wallet! Posted via Android Central App
  • Wish Canada had Google wallet, some banks are starting to use tap and pay but it's weird says that you need to be with one of the three major phone carriers. Wtf do they need that for. Posted via Android Central App
  • they need that so they big three can control you and the market more. you also need a sim card that has an nfc chip in it
  • You can also get the physical Google wallet card and use it as a pre paid card if they do not have tap and pay. I have it linked to my bank account and can add money to it in seconds to make purchases. I got it after the Target fiasco last Christmas. Posted via my OnePlus One!
  • Wish I could use it without having to transfer first, sometimes you don't know how much it will be till you have to pay
  • This sounds a lot like PayPal. Or the way they used to do things; it's been years since I've used it.
  • I couldn't get the PayPal app to work right. I put in the person's email that I was trying to send money to but they app said they didn't exist even though they are on my paylist on the PayPal website.
  • Absolutely not! Posted via Android Central App
  • Absolutely not. Not even dead keen about Google having my credit card info for its own Store - but at least its a prepaid card, so only minimal damage to be done there if it swiped (in all the wrong ways) by Google. To link my bank account to a 3rd Party provider so that I can use another 3rd Party provider?
  • I need my money to be there and should not have to wait 7 to 10 days, is there a method where its instant?
  • Anyone who links a bank account to any service like "google wallet" are idiots. Its a disaster waiting to happen..... And it will! Not to mention tracking ever purchase you make for monetary reasons. People who trust Google are dumb as rocks! Posted via Android Central App
  • But it is unfortunate for people, like myself, that have more than one bank account. I am only allowed to add one bank account, but more than one debit card. I know it's so that Google can receive more money when making transfers and well it cost money to make these transfers too. I just wish I could have at least two bank account to transfer in and out from instead of just the one and having to pay a small fee to take out money from a debt card.
  • I'm not linking my bank account to anything Google. Posted via Android Central App
  • Google Wallet needs to operate a little bit more like Pay Pal IMHO. I have a physical card for both and the Pay Pal card gives me no grief. I simply swipe the card, and if my balance isn't enough to cover it, Pay Pal withdraws the amount from my bank. And I get a 1% return on my purchase. This replaces my debit card, and gives me money for spending money. Google Wallet card requires that you preload the card with money to use it. Very impractical. It's the only reason I don't use the Wallet card. I don't want another prepaid debit card. Now as far as Tap and Pay goes, it's unrivaled. But my small town has about 4 locations that I can use that feature at. Walgreens, McDonalds, CVS, and maybe one other.
  • Step 0: Be in the USA
  • I left mine set up where I have to have the money in place in order to charge and I really like this idea. I can be anywhere and transfer funds on my phone to the Wallet balance and then make a purchase. What I like about this is that if someone gets the number and tries to use it, they are limited to my balance on-hand. Yes, another step or two but it safeguards my bank.
  • How would i transfer the money i was sent through Google wallet to my bank account? I do not have a Google wallet card. I have ordered one, but have ran into an emergency and the the funds today..