If you are using this money for savings, you should definitely have the money taken directly out of your check to be deposited into your saving account. This is called paying yourself first. This is a basic rule of investing. Americans are spenders. We have one of the lowest savings rates of any industrialized country. If you get the check and then cash it, the temptation is very high to keep the money in your pocket for future spending instead of putting some of it into your saving account. We are bombarded with advertisements to buy things. The temptation to spend is great. You have to know yourself. If you are disciplined and will, without question, put the amount you promised directly into your savings account, then you can choose that route. If your aren't disciplined, you clearly should have the money automatically taken out of your check. To be safe, I would strongly suggest automatically having the money taken out of your check. This forces you into savings and will help you begin the process to accumulate wealth for the future. Many years from now, you will be glad you did this automatic saving program. One of the basic rules of how to become a millionaire is to start saving early and to be committed to a savings plan by having money withdrawn automatically from each paycheck. You would be amazed how easy it is to become a millionaire if you do this!