Consumers looking for a new checking account may find that online banks offer features not available at street banks.
Traditional banks may also offer these checking account features, but at the cost of maintaining high minimum balances. Online checking accounts, on the other hand, typically have no or low minimum balance requirements.
Here is Bankrate’s selection of the best online checking accounts.
Bankrate picks for top online checking accounts
Ally Bank: Best overall online check
chime: Best Online Check for Beginners
Charles Schwab: Best online check for travelers
Navy Federal Credit Union: Best Online Checks for Teens
LendingClub Bank: Best online check for cashback
Note: Annual Yield (APY) shown is as of February 2, 2023 and may vary by region for some products. The Bankrate list includes only Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) banks or National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) credit unions.
Learn more about top online checking accounts
Ally Bank: Best Online Check
Ally Bank’s Interest Checking Account earns a small amount of interest, has a highly rated app, offers free standard and official checks, free domestic and international wire transfers, and some banks charge fees . Interest Checking customers have access to over 43,000 Allpoint ATMs. However, if one of these ATMs is unavailable, Ally Bank will reimburse fees charged at out-of-network ATMs up to the equivalent of $10 per statement cycle. Ally Bank also allows you to chat online with customer service or access a 24/7 toll-free number.
What to see: A minimum of $15,000 is required to win the top APY. Savers looking for higher yields should consider high-yielding savings or money market accounts, especially when it comes to putting money into savings.
Chime: Best Online Check for Beginners
Chime’s main attraction for novice bankers is the waiver of overdraft fees. Based on transaction history, Chime allows account holders to overdraw their accounts by up to $20 initially and then up to $200 over time. This service requires a qualifying direct deposit of $200 or more each month.
According to Bankrate’s 2022 checking account and ATM fees survey, the average overdraft fee is $29.80.
Chime customers can also access direct deposits up to two days in advance. This makes it easier for beginners on a tight budget to meet their monthly expenses. Chime also has a network of over 60,000 fee-free ATMs.
What to see: Chime is a challenger bank, a term used to describe technology companies that act as banks. Chime banking services are provided by Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank. Both banks are backed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
Charles Schwab: Best Online Checks for Travelers
A Charles Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking account allows unlimited withdrawals of ATM fees worldwide. The account does not charge monthly fees and has no minimum balance requirements. Also, Schwab does not charge a foreign transaction fee for international purchases. A small amount of interest will be charged on the remaining balance.
What to see: Schwab High Yield Investor Checking accounts require new account holders to also open a Schwab One brokerage account.
Navy Federal Credit Union: Best Online Checks for Teens
The Navy Federal Credit Union Free Campus Checking Account provides members who are full-time students with an account that can be used through high school and college. With this account, members aged 14 to her 24 do not have to pay monthly service fees and there are no minimum balance requirements. ATM charges of up to $10 per month are refunded each statement cycle. Students can use any ATM free of charge as long as the refunded amount is not exceeded. Free Campus Checking accounts also earn a small interest.
What to see: To obtain this account, you must be a member of the Navy Federal Credit Union. Membership is open to all DoD and Coast Guard active duty, civilians, contract personnel, veterans and their families. The account offers interest, but you can get higher yields with a savings account. A checking account that offers a competitive Annual Yield (APY) and has no minimum balance requirements can be easily found elsewhere, but it may not be called a student savings account.
LendingClub Bank: Best Online Check for Cash Back
With LendingClub Bank’s Rewards checking account, you can earn 1% cash back on your daily purchases without paying a monthly fee. This account also earns a small amount of interest and provides access to thousands of free ATMs around the world. Only $25 is required to open an account. You can also receive direct deposits up to two days in advance on this account.
What to watch: Maintaining an average balance of at least $2,500 each month or maintaining a direct deposit of at least $2,500 are two ways to ensure eligibility for the 1% Cash Back Program.
This checking account will earn interest, but you need at least $100,000 to earn the top APY. Also, he needs $2,500 to earn interest.
Pros and Cons of Online Checking Accounts
Typically provides 24/7 account access
Almost all banks accept mobile deposit checks
Some banks offer transaction alerts with a warning that your account is about to be debited
Many online checking accounts let you view your bank statements and search for transactions online
In-person banking, including withdrawals, is not available for online banking without branches.
Online banks do not have features such as safe deposit boxes available at some branches.
Online banking is not very convenient if you need cash quickly as there are no branches or onsite ATMs.
How to choose the best online bank
As with any purchase, researching and comparing online banks will help you make the best decision. Things to consider are:
How to access your money:
Does your account have a debit or ATM card to withdraw money from ATMs?
Does my account come with free checks or are there fees for checks?
Does the bank have branches or is it an online only bank?
Can I earn rewards or cashback with my debit card?
Is the app or website easy to use and trustworthy?
How can I send money to another account or person?
Also be aware of fees. According to Bankrate’s 2022 checking account and ATM fees survey, the monthly service fee for interest-bearing accounts was $16.19 and the monthly fee for non-interest-bearing checking accounts was $5.44. So finding online banking with no minimum balance requirements or maintenance fees can be a good choice to save money. Traditional banks may require direct deposits into some accounts to avoid monthly maintenance fees.
Online checking account FAQ
Are Online Banks Reliable?
Make sure you bank with a Federal Deposit Insurance Company (FDIC) bank or a National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) credit union. They are government-backed organizations. The FDIC insures both brick-and-mortar and online banks.
In some cases, an online bank is a division of a traditional bank, or funds are held under FDIC insurance at a brick-and-mortar bank. Here are some examples.
Do online banks offer debit cards?
Online banks usually offer debit cards for checking accounts, but they may not offer debit cards or ATM cards for savings or money market accounts.
Debit cards are usually used to make purchases and withdraw money from ATMs. For money market or savings accounts, debit cards can only withdraw money from ATMs.
How can I get cash with an online bank?
Many online checking accounts come with a debit or ATM card to access your money at an ATM. Knowing your bank’s ATM network, if any, can also save you money. ATMs in the network generally do not charge a fee.
Bankrate’s best checking account methodology
Bankrate’s editorial team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers. Also, the content is fact-checked to ensure accuracy. Our editorial and research team analyzed over 100 widely available financial institutions, consisting of large banks and credit unions, as well as many popular online banks.
To find the best checking account for you, Bankrate’s editorial team analyzed various factors such as fees, minimum balance requirements, and the Annual Yield Yield (APY) offered. All listed checking accounts are funded by the bank’s Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) or the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) credit union’s National Credit Union Equity Insurance Fund (NCUSIF) (sometimes through partner banks). Guaranteed.
When choosing a checking account, you should consider account minimums, monthly service fees, ATM fees, etc. Finding a checking account with no fees and minimal balance requirements is easy. It is offered by many online banks and is suitable for many consumers.
Choosing a federally backed bank or credit union can help keep your money safe. Follow FDIC and NCUA restrictions and guidelines.
The Bankrate editorial team selects criteria, develops a scoring system to determine the best checking accounts, and selects the best way to rate them using their knowledge of financial services and banking experience. bottom.
bank to monitor
These financial institutions are featured in our CD rate survey: Alliant Credit Union, Ally Bank, Amerant Bank, America First Credit Union, American Express National Bank, Axos Bank, Bank5 Connect, Bank of America, Bank of the West, Barclays, Bask Bank, BB&T, BECU (Boeing Employees Credit Union), Bethpage Federal Credit Union, BMO Harris Bank, Bread Financial (formerly Comenity Direct), BrioDirect, Capital One Bank, Chase Bank, CIBC USA, CIT Bank, Citibank , Citizens, Citizens Bank (Rhode Island), Comerica Bank, Customers Bank, Delta Community Credit Union, Discover Bank, Emigrant Direct, Fifth Third Bank, First Citizens Bank, First Internet Bank, First Technology Federal Credit Union, FNBO Direct, Golden 1 Credit Union, Marcus by Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley Private Bank, Huntington National Bank, Investors Bank, Investors eAccess, KeyBank, Limelight Bank, Live Oak Bank, M&T Bank, MySavingsDirect, Navy Federal Credit Union, NBKC Bank, PenFed Credit Union, PNC Bank, Popular Direct, PurePoint Financial, Quontic Bank, Randolph-Brooks Federal Credit Union, Regions Bank, Salem Five Direct, Sallie Mae Bank, Santander Bank, SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union, Security Service Federal Credit Union, State Employees’ Credit Union, Suncoast Credit Union, Suntrust Bank, Synchrony Bank, TD Bank, TIAA Bank, UFB Direct, Union Bank (California ), US Bank, USAA Bank, Vio Bank, VyStar Credit Union, Wells Fargo, Zions Bank.