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CHAPS Payment: What Is It and How It Works

By Lulu Meade

A CHAPS transfer is a same-day bank-to-bank payment method, and yes, we think the name’s awesome too.

What is a CHAPS payment?

CHAPS or Clearing House Automated Payment System is used by a lot of high-street banks for high-value payments.

CHAPS allow same-day payment delivery but are pretty strict with the cut-off times of when you can submit the request. You’ll want to check with your bank when those times are as they can differ if you’re submitting the request in-person, online or over the phone. If you do miss the cut-off time, don’t panic, the payment will just be sent the next working day! It can also be tricky to cancel a CHAPS payment, so make sure you double-check everything before submitting the request.

How do CHAPS payment work?

Completing a CHAPS payment is pretty simple. You can make a CHAPS payment over the phone, online or in-person at your local bank branch. You’ll need your account details, payment date and payment amount- as well as those of the payee.

We hope that answered any questions you may have had about CHAPS payments- if you want to find out more check out our post on BACS payments!

Payments need to be worth more than £10,000 due to the high transaction cost, usually between £25-30, but there is no upper limit on the amount you can send.

How long does a CHAPS payment or transfer take?

If submitted before the deadline of your bank, a CHAPS payment will have same-day payment delivery. If you miss the cut-off time, the payment will just be sent the next working day!

Alternatives to CHAPS payments:

There are two main differences between CHAPS and BACS- speed and cost. CHAPS are far quicker than BACS, with same-day payment delivery, whilst BACS can take three working days. In terms of price, however, BACS is the clear winner, offering free payments, unlike CHAPS which can cost up to £35. If you fancy reading more about BACS, check out our blog post here!


The key difference between CHAPS and SWIFT (or the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication) payments is the international factor. CHAPS can only be used to transfer sterling, whereas SWIFT payments can be used to transfer different currencies all over the world.

If you’re looking for better ways to monitor your payments and spending and take control of your budgeting check out the free Nova app. Start your financial journey now!

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