In this guide

  • Our verdict
  • Your reviews
  • Ask a question
Finder makes money from featured partners, but editorial opinions are our own. Advertiser disclosure

Our verdict

Get the perks of a checking and savings account in one, though interest rates vary wildly by location.

PNC Virtual Wallet® has five accounts that offer the combined features of checking and savings by organizing your assets into Spend, Reserve and Growth categories. All five offer interest and ATM reimbursements, but most come with monthly fees. Also, your interest rate varies depending on your location and account type, with its average rate earning 0.03% APY, which is well below the national average currently at 0.45% APY.

Best for: Customers who want an all-in-one banking product they can manage from one mobile app.

Pros

  • Expense tracker and money management tools
  • Free overdraft protection
  • Earn up to $400, conditions apply

Cons

  • Most accounts have a monthly fee
  • Only available in 22 states
  • Low interest rates that vary by location

In this guide

  • Our verdict
  • Your reviews
  • Ask a question

Who is PNC Virtual Wallet best for

PNC Virtual Wallet accounts are best for those who want the convenience and flexibility of checking and savings features in one account. There are five types of Virtual Wallets to choose from, and they each come with free ATM access and mobile banking.

But the products and APYs offered vary significantly by location, so not all customers will enjoy a competitive interest rate. When we spoke to PNC, they told us that the Virtual Wallet accounts are only available in these 22 locations:

  • Alabama
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • D.C.
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Kentucky
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Texas
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin

So not all customers will enjoy a competitive interest rate. Plus, most accounts come with a monthly fee, so the Virtual Wallet makes the most sense if you also qualify to waive the fee, which varies depending on which account you choose.

How it works

There are five types of Virtual Wallet accounts to choose from. Each one bears interest and comes with an ATM card. Fees and perks vary by product, so you can hone in on the checking and savings account combo that best fits your needs.

Account nameBest forMonthly feeHow to avoidFeatures
Virtual Wallet Those who want a no-frills checking account and keep a balance of at least $500$25Meet one of the following:
  • $500+ in monthly direct deposits to your Spend account
  • $500+ total monthly balance in your Spend and Reserve accounts
  • Age 62+
  • Budgeting tools
  • Spending and low balance alerts
  • Two layers of overdraft protection
Virtual Wallet with Performance SpendThose who periodically use out-of-network ATMs$15Meet one of the following:
  • $2,000+ in monthly direct deposits to your Spend account
  • $2,000+ total monthly balance in your Spend and Reserve accounts
  • $10,000+ in total PNC account balances
  • Receive at least $1,000 in monthly direct deposits and are a military member
Virtual Wallet features, plus:
  • Free paper statements
  • Two out-of-network ATM fee reimbursements a month of up to $5
Virtual Wallet with Performance SelectThose who regularly use out-of-network ATMs$25Meet one of the following:
  • $5,000+ in monthly direct deposits to your Spend account
  • $5,000+ total monthly balance in your Spend and Reserve accounts
  • $25,000+ in total PNC account balances
Virtual Wallet features, plus:
  • Free paper statements
  • Up to $10 ATM reimbursements for third-party out-of-network ATMs
Virtual Wallet Checking ProThose who don’t want a monthly fee$0Not applicableVirtual Wallet features, plus:
  • Free paper statements
  • No PNC out-of-network ATM fees
  • Up to $20 ATM reimbursements for third-party out-of-network ATM fees per month
Virtual Wallet StudentStudents$0 for the first six years, then $7 when it converts to a regular Virtual Wallet accountAfter six years, you’ll need to meet one of the following:
  • $500+ in monthly direct deposits to your Spend account
  • $500+ total monthly balance in your Spend and Reserve accounts
  • Age 62+
Virtual Wallet features, plus:
  • One overdraft fee refund
  • One free incoming wire transfer per month
  • Free paper statements
  • Two out-of-network ATM fee reimbursements of up to $5 a month

What makes PNC Virtual Wallet shine

The PNC Virtual Wallet breaks the mold of traditional banking by letting you enjoy the best of both worlds with short- and long-term savings along with a checking account. While you can choose to open any Virtual Wallet as a checking account only, you’d be missing out on higher interest rates for your unused cash by not utilizing its Reserve and Growth cash buckets.

You’ll get access to over 9,000 in-network PNC-brand ATMs across the country. While this isn’t as much as some online banks, like Ally Bank, that partner with ATM networks like AllPoint to provide customers access to over 55,000 ATMs, most Virtual Wallet accounts come with ATM reimbursements of up to $20 a month to cover fees for using out-of-network ATMs.

PNC Bank also has useful digital spending tools for managing money. For example, its Money Bar shows you what funds are needed for upcoming bills and what’s free to spend. Its budgeting tools monitor your spending and send you alerts to help you stack on track. And PNC’s new Low Cash Mode has several features that give you more control in handling overdrafts:

  • Alerts. Notifications for when your account is near or below zero.
  • Extra Time. Deposit money to your account within 24 hours to cover any overdrafts to avoid the overdraft fee.
  • Payment Control. Choose whether you want to pay or return checks and ACH transfers when your balance is in the red.

Plus, PNC frequently offers cash rewards of $100, $200 or $400 for new customers that complete specific tasks for the account option you select.

Where PNC Bank Virtual Wallet falls short

The biggest drawback is its product availability. Depending on where you live, you may not be eligible for a specific type of Virtual Wallet tier, or your interest rates may be nearly nonexistent.

Here’s a snapshot of the range of interest rates we’ve found for each Virtual Wallet account across its Spend, Reserve and Growth categories.

AccountAPY range
Virtual Wallet0.01% to 2.55% APY
Virtual Wallet with Performance Spend0.01% to 3.6% APY
Virtual Wallet with Performance Select0.01% to 3.6% APY
Virtual Wallet Checking Pro4% APY
Virtual Wallet Student0.01% to 0.03% APY

For example, PNC Bank doesn’t offer the Virtual Wallet Checking Pro account to New York residents, which means you could be missing out on 4% APY on balances of $1 or more. On the other hand, while New York and California residents both qualify for the PNC Virtual Wallet account, New Yorkers can only earn up to 0.03% APY — that’s lower than the national average of 0.45%, whereas Californians stand to earn up to 2.55% APY.

In other words, if you deposited $100 into your Virtual Wallet account, you’d only earn $0.03 after a year if you lived in New York. But if you lived in California, you’d earn $2.55 — 85 times more than your East Coast counterpart.

Plus, your monthly fee can quickly eat away at your savings — unless you qualify to waive it.

Compare PNC Virtual Wallet with other accounts

Narrow down other checking accounts by features, including APY and ATM access. Select Compare to see how up to four products stack up.

1 - 6 of 26
Name Product Fee Minimum deposit to open Annual Percentage Yield (APY) Offer
SoFi Checking and Savings
Finder Score: 4.5 / 5: ★★★★★
Bonus
SoFi Checking and Savings
$0 per month
$0
4.60% on balances of $0+
0.50% on balances of $0+
1.20% on balances of $0+
Get up to $300 cash bonus with qualifying direct deposit. Terms apply. This offer is available until December 31, 2024.
Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus
Finder Score: 4.3 / 5: ★★★★★
Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus
$0 per month
$0
N/A
Cash Card by Cash App
Finder Score: 4.4 / 5: ★★★★★
Cash Card by Cash App
$0 per month
$0
N/A
Step Black Card
Finder Score: 4.3 / 5: ★★★★★
Step Black Card
From $0 per month
$0
5.00% on balances of $0 to $1,000,000
PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select
Finder Score: 3.4 / 5: ★★★★★
Bonus
PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select
$25 per month
(can be waived)
$0
0.01%
Earn $400 when you open a new PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select and establish a direct deposit of at least $5,000+ to your Spend account in the first 60 days.
Axos Bank Rewards Checking
Finder Score: 4.2 / 5: ★★★★★
Bonus
Axos Bank Rewards Checking
$0 per month
$0
3.30% on balances of $0 to $50,000
Use promo code RC500 and apply by July 31th, 2024, to earn up to $500 bonus, $100 each month you meet requirements: receive qualifying direct deposits of $1,500.00+ and maintain an average daily balance of $3,000+.
loading

Customer experience

PNC Bank reviews are mixed on the Better Business Bureau, Trustpilot and Reddit. Some customers call out unpleasant experiences with their local customer service agents, while others have nothing but good things to say. The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) has given most of PNC Bank’s branch locations an Outstanding or Satisfactory rating.

Customers complaining about PNC Virtual Wallet contend it has low interest rates and high fees. But we also found a few Reddit users that highly recommend the product for its ease of use. And a few customers rave about its budgeting tools, citing the Virtual Wallet as a great way to keep their weekly spending in check and reach long-term savings goals.

Checking account ratings

★★★★★ — Excellent

★★★★★ — Good

★★★★★ — Average

★★★★★ — Subpar

★★★★★ — Poor

We analyze top checking accounts and rate them one to five stars based on factors that are most important to you. These factors include: monthly fees, the ease at which monthly fees can be waived, the breadth of ATM access, ATM and overdraft fees, and customer service.

Read the full methodology of how we rate checking accounts.

Applicants must reside in AL, AZ, CA, CO, DC, DE, FL, GA, IL, IN, KY, MD, MI, NC, NJ, NY, NM, OH, PA, SC, TX, VA, WI, WV. Virtual Wallet with Performance Select is offered in the state of MO with the exception of the Crossroads Solution Center in Kansas City. Offer is contingent on product availability and may vary based on your address and where and how you open your account. Information on this product was not provided by the bank. Our editorial team maintains full control over the content we publish without influence from partners.

Ask a question

Ask a question
Avatar

Kimberly Finder

Writer

Hi there, looking for more information? Ask us a question.

Error label

You are about to post a question on finder.com:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked
Accept and continue

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our finder.com Terms of Use and Privacy and Cookies Policy.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Go to site