Banking and Finance

The Best Online Checking Accounts of All Time

Elizabeth
June 13, 2020

Studies published last year showed that at least 25% of American households were unbanked or underbanked, meaning that they didn’t have a checking account. While it’s not necessary to live life, it’s certainly helpful. And, if you’re able to find the right checking account for your needs, it can even improve your financial health.


You’ll likely find lots of checking account offers floating around the internet, and the best checking account offers aren’t always the same for every person. Depending on your financial situation, the type of lifestyle you lead, and your future financial goals, there’s a checking account that’s right for you.


Looking for a free online bank account? From online bank accounts to checking accounts with traditional banks, here are our top picks for some of the best online checking accounts of all time, or at least in 2020.

Best Checking Accounts in 2020

1. Chase Total Checking

Chase Total Checking
Image: Chase Bank

The main perks of this checking account are that you can receive a $200 bonus if you set up direct deposit along with the fact that Chase is pretty prominent in various locations across the United States, making it easy to access physical branches and ATMs when you need them.


🛠️  Monthly Maintenance Fee: $12

💸  Minimum Opening Balance: Chase charges no minimum opening deposit for any of their three main checking account options.

😢  Overdraft Fee: $34

💲 Other Fees: $2.50 per withdrawal at any non-Chase ATM; 3% foreign transaction fee; find Chase wire transfer fees here.

📈 Interest Rate & APY: No interest; .01% APY.

💰  Cashback: N/A

🤑  Other Perks: Get a $200 bonus when you open a new Chase Total Checking account and set up direct deposit within 60 days of opening your account.

2. Ally Interest Checking Account

Ally Interest Checking Account
Image: Ally Bank

It’s hard to find a traditional bank that offers interest on a checking account; usually, that’s reserved for savings accounts. However, the Ally Interest Checking Account is a great option for super savers. It requires a $0 balance to open the account and there are no monthly maintenance fees, which is actually pretty common for online banks. 


🛠️  Monthly Maintenance Fee: $0

💸  Minimum Opening Balance: $0

😢   Overdraft Fee: $25

💲 Other Fees: Ally reimburses up to $10 at the end of each statement cycle for fees charged at other ATMs nationwide; no fees for incoming wires; outgoing domestic wires are $20.

📈 Interest Rate & APY: Depending on how much you have in the account, you can earn between 0.10% to 0.50% APY. But, you have to maintain a balance of $15,000 to receive the highest APY.

💰  Cashback: N/A

🤑  Other Perks: Send and receive money for free using Zelle.

3. Discover Cashback Debit

Discover Cashback Debit
Image: Discover Bank

The best online checking account is one without fees, and online bank accounts are traditionally the only banks that can offer fee-free accounts. Banks such as Discover are now growing their online checking account offers, including the Discover Cashback Debit card.


🛠️  Monthly Maintenance Fee: $0

💸  Minimum Opening Balance: $0

😢  Overdraft Fee: $0

💲 Other Fees: $0 in ATM fees at over 60,000 ATMs nationwide; incoming wire transfers are free; outgoing wire transfers are $30.

📈 Interest Rate & APY: While this account earns 1.15% APY (up to $30 per month), you also have to open a Discover Online Savings account in order to have the cashback savings sent there.

💰  Cashback: Get cashback on up to $3,000 of eligible purchases each month.

🤑  Other Perks: You’re eligible to receive free checks when you sign up for this account.

4. TD Bank Convenience Checking

TD Bank Convenience Checking
Image: TD Bank

Similar to the Chase Total Checking account offer, you can earn a cash bonus just for opening a TD Bank Convenience Checking account. If you sign up for a direct deposit and receive a total of $500 or more into the account within 60 days, you’ll be eligible to receive a $150 bonus. And, as long as you maintain a minimum daily balance of $100, you can waive the $15 monthly fee.


🛠️  Monthly Maintenance Fee: $15

💸  Minimum Opening Balance: $0

😢   Overdraft Fee: $35, but the account is eligible for overdraft protection.

💲 Other Fees: $0 at TD ATMs; $3 at non-TD Bank ATMs.

📈 Interest Rate & APY: 0.01% APY for balances of $9,999.99 or less; up to 0.05% APY for higher balances.

💰  Cashback: N/A

🤑  Other Perks: You’re eligible to receive discounts for home equity and personal loans, plus perks for students; receive a $150 bonus if you sign up for a direct deposit and receive over $500 in the first 60 days.

5. US Bank Safe Debit Checking Account

US Bank Safe Debit Checking Account
Image: US Bank

The Safe Debit Checking Account is US Bank’s cheapest and simplest option for non-students. With a super-low monthly fee, this is what they call their “bank account with no checks and lots of advantages.”


🛠️  Monthly Maintenance Fee: $4.95 (cannot be waived)

💸  Minimum Opening Balance: $25

😢  Overdraft Fee: US Bank will decline the transaction if you don’t have sufficient funds, thereby avoiding any overdraft fees.

💲 Other Fees: $0 at US Bank ATMs; $2.50 at non-US Bank Bank ATMs.

📈 Interest Rate & APY: N/A

💰  Cashback: N/A

🤑  Other Perks: Free access to your TransUnion credit score plus free mobile check deposit.

6. Axos Bank CashBack Checking Account

Axos Bank CashBack Checking Account
Image: Axos Bank

Axos Bank might not be that well-known, but because it’s an online bank, they’re able to offer great cashback deals for customers who open a CashBack Checking Account. Like most other online banks, their fee-free banking option is a fantastic benefit for those who simply want to save money and earn cashback on their purchases.


🛠️  Monthly Maintenance Fee: $0

💸  Minimum Opening Balance: $0

😢  Overdraft Fee: N/A

💲 Other Fees: Unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements.

📈 Interest Rate & APY: N/A

💰  Cashback: 1% cashback on eligible purchases when you maintain a $1,500 balance.

🤑  Other Perks: Upgrade to the Rewards Checking account and earn 1.25% APY; free mobile deposits and online bill pay.

7. Bank of America Advantage SafeBalance Banking

Bank of America Advantage SafeBalance Banking
Image: My Bank Tracker

As one of the most basic checking account options offered by Bank of America, their Advantage SafeBalance Banking allows you to enjoy low fees that are pretty easy to waive plus access to their online banking resources. The benefit of banking with BOA is that you can enroll in Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards and receive cashback and other rewards while spending.


🛠️  Monthly Maintenance Fee: $4.95

💸  Minimum Opening Balance: $25

😢   Overdraft Fee: $0

💲 Other Fees: $2.50 fee for withdrawals at non-BOA ATMs; view the Bank of America wire transfer fees here.

📈 Interest Rate & APY: N/A

💰  Cashback: Enroll in Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards to access cashback deals.

🤑  Other Perks: Students and persons under 24 can have the monthly maintenance fee waived; the ability to enroll in their rewards program can save you a lot depending on where you routinely shop and spend.

8. Portfolio by Wells Fargo

Portfolio by Wells Fargo
Image: Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo offers basic checking accounts, but it’s their Portfolio account that’s by far the most lucrative in terms of interest rates and waivers for fees. Wells Fargo notes that this checking account is their best option in terms of the highest level of relationship benefits and rewards.


🛠️  Monthly Maintenance Fee: $30

💸  Minimum Opening Balance: $25

😢  Overdraft Fee: $35 (but eligible for Wells Fargo Overdraft Rewind)

💲 Other Fees: $0 in fees at non-Wells Fargo ATMs for cash withdrawals made in the US and abroad; view the Wells Fargo transfer fees here.

📈 Interest Rate & APY: 0.01% APY

💰  Cashback: N/A

🤑  Other Perks: No monthly service fee on additional select linked checking and savings accounts; interest rate discounts on new personal loans, home equity loans, and lines of credit via Wells Fargo.

9. Charles Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking

Charles Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking
Image: Marotta on Money

If you’re truly interested in growing your cash over time, this High Yield Investor Checking account is linked to a Schwab One brokerage account and built for investors. Yet, it comes with no monthly fees and no minimum balance requirements.


🛠️  Monthly Maintenance Fee: $0

💸  Minimum Opening Balance: $0

😢   Overdraft Fee: $25

💲 Other Fees: Unlimited ATM fee rebates worldwide plus no foreign transaction fees.

📈 Interest Rate & APY: 0.03% APY (higher than comparable accounts at Bank of America, Citibank, Chase, and Wells Fargo).

💰  Cashback: N/A

🤑  Other Perks: No foreign transaction fees are great for travelers; When you open your High Yield Investor Checking account, you’ll be opening a brokerage account at the same time and receiving a separate account number for each.

10. Cheese Debit Card

Cheese Debit Card
Cheese Debit Card

We might be a little biased, but we believe that opening an account with Cheese is definitely one of the best online checking account options in 2020. Not only is it a fee-free option to traditional checking accounts, but it’s a great free online checking account for those interested in saving cash easily and quickly. 


🛠️  Monthly Maintenance Fee: $0

💸  Minimum Opening Balance: $0

😢  Overdraft Fee: $0

💲 Other Fees: $0 in fees at 55K ATMs in the US.

📈 Saving Bonus: Up to 3% by referring friends

💰  Cashback: Up to 10% for now

🤑  Other Perks: No fees for incoming international wire transfers, bilingual customer service in-app, more cashback affiliate brands to be unlocked, and more...


When you refer friends and family you can get up to a 3% savings bonus. And, you can receive up to 10% cashback when you shop with our exclusive partners, including Postmates, Hulu, Peet’s Coffee, Sephora, Groupon, and more. Your account will accrue interest on top of earning you cashback each time you swipe it when spending with one of our partners. Those are savings you simply can’t miss out on.


Here're more you need to know about best debit cards, savings accounts and checking accounts:

The 6 Best Debit Cards That Pay Cash Back Rewards

The 5 Best Prepaid Debit Cards

Hidden Savings Account Costs You May Not Know About

Savings Account vs. CD: What's the Difference & How to Choose?

The Best Online Checking Accounts of All Time

The 6 Best No-Fee Checking Accounts

Cheese 银行卡 美国华人最好的选择
Cheese 银行卡 美国华人最好的选择