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Alterna Savings and Credit Union Sample Cheque: Everything You Need to Know to Find and Understand It

    From pre-authorizing payments to getting paid, sample cheques still come in handy… even though cheques are rarely used in Canada. The main reason you need an Alterna sample cheque is to share your banking information with someone else.

    Understanding your Alterna Savings Credit Union sample cheque

    If you know what the numbers at the bottom of your Alterna sample cheque mean, you can probably just share them… without having to go looking for a Sample Cheque in your banking portal every time someone asks for one.

    So, here are the important features of a cheque in Canada that you should be able to recognize by looking at one :

    1. Your home address

    This is the information you don’t need to look at a sample cheque to know. However, it is often needed by those who ask you for a sample cheque.

    2. Your branch address

    This is the address of your Alterna branch. Note that some Alterna branches have more than one point of service. 

    3. Your branch transit number

    This is a 5-digit number that identifies the Alterna branch to which your bank account is associated.

    4. Your bank Institution Number

    The institution number is a three-digit number that identifies the financial institution you are dealing with, regardless of the branch you have chosen. Alterna’s institution number is 842.

    5. Your account number (or folio number)

    The account (or folio) number is the identifier for your bank account. Without the transit number and institution number, it cannot be used to transfer money. As a result, it is the most sensitive information you will find on your sample cheque, as it is the number that is associated with your bank account. This number varies in length depending on the financial institution but generally ranges from 7 to 12 digits. 

    How to find your sample cheque on the Alterna online portal

    Before the Internet, a sample cheque was a paper cheque with “SAMPLE” or “VOID” written on it to ensure that the cheque could not be used. If you have a chequebook, you can still do this. In fact, a sample cheque is a document that contains all the information displayed on a cheque, so you can still do it that way.

    If you don’t have a chequebook, there is a simple alternative. Unlike some financial institutions, which allow a sample cheque to be downloaded from their client portal, Alterna invites its clients to download a document with the same function, a direct deposit form. In fact, it contains all the information available on a cheque and anyone who asks you for a sample cheque will accept it. Here are the steps to download Alterna’s direct deposit form through their website:

    • Log into your Alterna account using the following link: https://www.alterna.ca/en/personal
    • In the left-hand menu, click on “Direct Deposit and Pre-authorized Debit Form”;
    • Choose the account you need
    • A form that includes the necessary information for direct deposit will appear. All you have to do is save it as a PDF or print it.

    Now you know all it takes to find your account information as an Alterna Savings customer! Furthermore, you should now be able to write a cheque.

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    Arthur Dubois is a personal finance writer at Hardbacon. Since relocating to Canada, he has successfully built his credit score from scratch and begun investing in the stock market. In addition to his work at Hardbacon, Arthur has contributed to Metro newspaper and several other publications