What is the advantage of direct deposit vs. getting a check?
Speed, security, and convenience. By e-filing and choosing direct deposit, the IRS expects to issue 9 out of 10 refunds within 21 days, as opposed to 4-6 weeks for a check in the mail.
With a direct-deposited refund, you don't need to worry about your check getting lost in the mail, nor do have to go to the bank to deposit or cash it.
You can even split a direct-deposited refund into 2 or 3 different accounts (unless you're using the optional Refund Processing Service to pay your TurboTax fees).
Please note that due to IRS regulations, you cannot direct-deposit your refund into foreign accounts – only domestic accounts located in the United States.
Also, starting this year, the IRS won't let you deposit more than 3 federal refunds into the same bank account during a given year. If a bank account has already received 3 direct-deposits from the IRS, any additional deposit requests will instead be mailed out as refund checks.