Managing your personal finances can be stressful and overwhelming but with the introduction of financial management apps it has become more efficient and approachable for all. Gone are the days of manually updating a spreadsheet with every single transaction or holding onto physical receipts to review at the end of the month.
With personal finance apps you no longer have to worry about the leg work and can let the apps accurately and instantly assess your financial situation. There are a number of options on the market for people who are looking to take control of their finances in a simpler way and among the most popular choices are the Chip and Plum apps.
Both platforms offer unique features and benefits, but how do they stack up against each other? In this blog post, we will delve into the similarities and differences between Chip and Plum to help you determine which one suits your financial needs.
It’s also worth comparing both services with alternatives such as Emma. Another personal finance app, Emma offers a suite of budgeting tools and analytics as well as savings and investment options but we’ll look at this more later.
One of the primary objectives of both the Chip and Plum apps is to assist users in saving money effortlessly. Both apps offer a number of different savings features with the objective of taking the leg work out of saving.
Before we break down the different features in each app it is important to first note that both apps offer FSCS protected up to £85,000 and both offer competitive AER rates which vary.
At the time of writing Chip offers a market-leading rate of 3.82% AER on their Instant Access Account and Plum offers 3.51% AER on their Easy Access Interest Pocket for paying subscribers.
Okay, let’s break down Chip’s savings features first.
Currently, Chip offers four savings accounts all in the app:
- Instant access savings account: Offers a high-interest rate of 3.82% AER paid monthly with instant access to your money
- Prize savings account: Enters you for a chance to win up to £35k in prizes each month
- Easy Access account: Offers daily compounding interest at a rate of 1.10% AER
- 90-day notice account: Allows you to save more by requiring a minimum of 90 days notice before withdrawing. Has the highest interest rate at 4.10% AER
The different accounts are set up to help you reach your goals depending on whether they are long or short-term goals and how quickly you need to be able to access the money.
Chip enables users to take advantage of auto-saving and recurring save technologies to make saving a stress-free experience. Chip’s savings plans work with all four of their savings accounts.
Chips Autosave works by setting aside a selected amount from your connected bank account to your Chip savings account every four days.
Recurring saves works in a similar way but you can select the frequency to be weekly, bi-weekly, every 4 weeks or monthly.
Now let’s break down Plum savings features.
For Plum, savings is also a major focus of the app but unlike Chip offering multiple accounts, Plum offers the ability to create savings pockets. Their easy-access interest pockets offer a variable rate and the ability to create and customize your savings pockets to your desires!
Plum also offers a number of automatic savings tools to help you reach your financial goals fast. Plum is able to analyze your transactions to identify regular income, rent, bills, and spending. From here you can set it up to calculate the amount that can safely be set aside every 4-5 days and Plum will transfer this via direct debit.
Plum offers a number of different savings rules that you can put in place like round-ups, taking part in their 52-week challenge, or saving for a rainy day which sets aside a calculated amount weekly.
Plum also allows you to select a savings mode ranging from ‘Chilled’ at 25% to ‘Beast Mode’at 75%. For users looking to aggregate their savings from multiple accounts to one platform, another great option is Emma which offers savings pots at a competitive rate of 3.04% AER. With Emma, you can transfer money from multiple bank connections to create separate pots for each of your savings goals!
Both Plum and Chip have developed investment platforms within their apps and both offer a number of different investing options.
Again let’s start by looking at Chip, Chip offers two different types of investing accounts, a stocks and shares ISA and a regular investing account. The Individual Savings Accounts (ISA for short), enable you to seek tax-free returns on your investments. Chip allows you to invest in a number of different funds like the global S&P 500’s, Clean energy, and physical gold.
With Chip, you can set up auto-invest and create recurring purchases from your favorite stocks. This feature allows you to invest without thinking about it each month and takes one more thing off of your to-do list. Chip also offers 0% platform fees when you pay for their ChipX plan for £4.99 per month. This plan offers access to more investment funds as well. With ChipX you have access to 9 different funds as opposed to the 2 funds available to free users.
Now onto Plum who also has an investment platform in the app but rather than strictly investment funds, Plum allows users to invest in full and fractional shares of both funds and stocks.
Similarly to Chip, Plum offers a paid premium plan (for £9.99 p/m) that offers an additional 9 funds to invest in on top of the 12 funds available to free users. Like Chip, Plum allows you to automate your investing by simply selecting the amount, frequency and where you want it to be allocated. From there Plum will do the rest. Plum allows you to invest in funds and stocks with as little as £1. On top of the available funds Plum also enables users to trade commision free on more than 3000 american stocks.
Integration and Compatibility
Compatibility with other financial institutions and services is crucial for a seamless financial management experience. Chip only allows users to connect one bank card while Plum enables users to connect multiple bank accounts to the app.
Both apps do so with Open Banking technology that allows you to connect most Uk bank accounts that have an Open API. Currently Chip is able to integrate with 19 banking providers within the UK, while plum is able to connect to 20.
Both apps integrate with various banks and financial institutions, enabling users to link their accounts. Once connected Plum is able to show you each of your transactions while Chip only shows account balances from your chip accounts within the app.
All in all both Chip and Plum offer valuable features for managing personal finances effectively.
These are both great alternatives to the Emma app which also offer the ability to automate your savings and investing as well as a suite of budgeting tools and the ability to track your subscriptions, pay directly to friends and other accounts and the ability to connect with 52 bank and credit institutions.
Emma also allows you to connect to 21 other investment accounts or crypto wallets you may have to ensure all of your banking is in one place. Emma also allows you to connect offline accounts and assets to ensure you have a complete financial picture.
Whichever platform you decide to go with it is important to take into account your financial goals and preferences. For some looking to maximise their savings Chip may be the best route while those looking to grow their investment portfolio may go with Plum. Others who want a broad overview of their entire financial picture and to build wealth will find Emma’s suite of tools best for them.
Whether you are at the start of your personal financial journey or a seasoned Pro personal money management apps like Chip, Plum and Emma are your secret weapon for success!
For quick comparison we took the free and most expensive….
|Chip Free||Plum Free|
|Savings Accounts||-4 different account options|
-Varying interest rates per account
-Automatic savings available
|-One savings pocket|
|Savings Rate||-1.10% AER easy access account|
-3.82% AER instant access
-4.10% AER 90 day notice
|Investing Options||2 basic investment funds||No investment for free users|
|Investing Fees||0.5% annual platform fee||N/A|
|Compatability||19 bank connections available||20 bank connections available|
|Chip X||Plum Premium|
|Savings Accounts||-4 different account options|
-Varying intates rates per account
-Automatic savings available
|-Money maximiser feature|
-1p challenge feature
-Naughty rule feature, rainy days
-Pay day features, 52 week challenge, rainy days
|Savings Rate||1.10% AER easy access account|
3.82% AER instant access
4.10% AER 90 day notice
|Investing Option||9 investment funds||-access to 3000+ stocks -access to 9 premium funds|
+ 12 standard funds
|Investing Fees||0% Platform fee||Included in Subscripton fee|
|Compatability||19 Bank Connections||20 Bank Connections|
|Additional||-access to cashback offers in the app|
** All facts and figures are accurate at the time of writing June 2nd, 2023.