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Best online banks in Canada in September 2023

Searching for the best online bank in Canada? We'll show you how to find the right account for your needs.

The days of queuing in a bank branch are long gone. With the best online banking in Canada, it’s possible to carry out all of your day-to-day transactions online. All major banks and financial institutions have embraced the digital revolution, offering online and mobile banking apps to help you manage your money whenever and wherever you want.

Some have taken it a step further, with online-only banks shunning bricks and mortar branches to operate entirely online. Online banks offer low fees, competitive interest rates, and a convenient way to bank 24/7. But with so many options to choose from, which is the best online bank in Canada?

Whether you’re looking for a chequing or savings account, and whether you want to bank online with a traditional bank or with an online-only bank, keep reading for our pick of the best online banks in Canada.

Best online banking in Canada, by feature in September 2023

Overall best online bank in Canada: Simplii Financial

If you’re searching for the best online bank in Canada, it’s hard to go past Simplii Financial. Run by CIBC, this digital bank offers a wide range of financial products and services to suit an extensive variety of banking needs. From its No Fee Chequing Account and High Interest Savings Account to its credit card, mortgages, lines of credit, personal loans and GICs, Simplii provides a full suite of banking products. You can apply online to open an account in minutes, and it’s easy to manage your account via the Simplii mobile app and online banking. You also get access to free withdrawals from CIBC ATMs, customer service available seven days a week, and the peace of mind of knowing Simplii is backed by one of Canada’s biggest banks. What’s not to like?

Best online bank in Canada for high-interest savings: EQ Bank Card

Looking for the best online bank in Canada to help you build a bigger bank balance? There are lots of good reasons why you should check out the EQ Bank Card. Linked to an EQ Savings Plus Account, the card allows you to earn 2.50% - 3.00% interest on every dollar in your account. The prepaid card can be used for in-store and online purchases Mastercard is accepted, and you get 0.5% cash back on every purchase. Best of all, EQ Bank doesn’t charge monthly fees, foreign transaction fees or inactivity fees, and you get free withdrawals at any ATM in Canada. That’s why it’s our pick as the best choice for high-interest savings.

EQ Bank Card

Earn 3.00% for 12 months when you set up $500/month or more in either direct deposit for your pay or recurring pre-authorized debits (this applies to your Savings Plus Account, Joint Savings Plus Account and EQ Bank Card balance). Conditions apply. Thereafter, you'll earn 2.50% on your balance. and 0.5% cashback on your spending.

Best online bank in Canada for day-to-day banking: Simplii No Fee Chequing Account

Simplii Financial’s No Fee Chequing Account offers the best online banking in Canada for anyone searching for an everyday transaction account. As the account name implies, there are no fees to worry about — no monthly fees and no minimum balance requirements, but you get access to unlimited debit purchases, bill payments and withdrawals. The Simplii No Fee Chequing Account offers everything else you need to manage your day-to-day finances, while you also get free access to over 3,400 CIBC ATMs across Canada with a debit Mastercard. And with overdraft protection of up to $5,000 available, this account ticks a lot of important boxes for a lot of Canadians.

Simplii No Fee Chequing Account

Earn $400 when you become a new client and set up a direct deposit of at least $100 for 3 months. Offer ends October 31, 2023.

Best online bank account with a Big 5 / Big 6 Bank: BMO Performance Chequing Account

BMO says its Performance Chequing Account is its most popular account, and it’s easy to see why. This account offers unlimited everyday banking transactions at BMO branches and ATMs, and when you use BMO online, mobile or telephone banking. There’s a monthly fee of $16.95, but the fee is waived if you maintain a minimum monthly balance of at least $4,000. You also get a free non-BMO ATM withdrawal every month, an opening cash bonus, and up to $40 rebate on the annual fee for eligible BMO credit cards. And with the freedom to let your family members enjoy the same banking benefits from separate accounts with the BMO Family Bundle, the BMO Performance Chequing Account is the best online bank account with a big five/six bank.

BMO Performance Chequing Account

Earn $350. Plus, earn an additional $100 when you add a second member and make it a BMO Family Bundle. Valid until October 31, 2023. Plus, earn a 5.25% bonus interest rate when you add a Savings Amplifier Account.

Best online bank in Canada for joint-account holders: EQ Bank Joint Savings Plus Account

If you’re joining forces with your significant other to achieve a savings goal, we recommend taking a closer look at the EQ Bank Joint Savings Plus Account. You can open an account with up to three other people, plus you get the interest-earning power of a savings account with the easy access of a chequing account. The Joint Savings Plus Account pays 2.5% interest on balances of up to $500,000, and there are no monthly fees or minimum balance requirements. Even better, you also get unlimited Interac e-Transfers, bill payments and electronic funds transfers, and you’re covered by CDIC deposit insurance for extra peace of mind. So whether you’re saving for a group vacation or a major purchase like a house, this account will make it easier to reach your goal.

EQ Bank Joint Account

Enjoy zero everyday banking fees, free transactions and no minimum balance with up to three other people.

Best online bank in Canada with rewards and cash back perks: Neo Financial

If you appreciate a bank that rewards its customers, Neo Financial is the best online bank in Canada for cash back and other perks. Open a Neo Money Account and not only do you earn 2.25% interest on every dollar in your account, but you also get uncapped cash back at an average rate of 5% at over 10,000 partner retailers. Or if you’re looking for a rewarding credit card, Neo Credit is a no-annual-fee card that offers exclusive welcome bonuses and unlimited cash back. And if you also subscribe to Neo Perks, you can access extra cash back at partner retailers across categories like travel, dining, gas, groceries and more. Check out the available rewards and bonuses to find out if Neo Financial is the right choice for you.

Best online bank app: KOHO

We think KOHO is the best online bank app in Canada for several reasons. First, there’s its intuitive user interface that is easy to navigate from the very first time you launch the app. Second, there’s the flexible range of account plans available. They range from the free Easy plan, which lets you earn 0.5% interest on your balance and 1% cash back on groceries and transportation, to the 4% interest-earning power and 2% cash back on groceries, eating and drinking, and transportation with the Everything plan. Third, there are the app features like RoundUps and Vaults to help you reach your savings goals. And finally, there’s the security of knowing up to $100,000 you deposit is protected by CDIC insurance, which is good news in anyone’s book.

KOHO Earn Interest

Use promo code FINDERCODE and get a $20 cash bonus when you make your first purchase within 30 days. Opt into earning interest and earn up to 4.50% on your balance.

Best online bank + investing platform in Canada: Wealthsimple Spend & Save

No matter whether you’re looking to manage your day-to-day spending, earn a high rate of interest on your balance or build your investment portfolio, Wealthsimple has got you covered. You can earn 1% interest when you open an account, 3% if you direct deposit at least $500 per paycheque, and 4% if you have $100,000 or more in your account. You also get rewarded when you spend with your Wealthsimple card, earning 1% back in stock, crypto or cash. Throw in CDIC deposit insurance cover for up to $300,000, plus managed investment portfolios as well as DIY stock, ETF, option and crypto trading, and it’s easy to see why Wealthsimple is a good choice for online investing.

Best online bank in Canada for RRSP or TFSA accounts: EQ Bank

EQ Bank is Canada’s best online bank for anyone looking to boost their savings with an RRSP or TFSA. Open a TFSA with EQ Bank to earn 3% interest on your balance, with no fees or minimum balance requirements to worry about. You can also access the funds in your account whenever you want, and set up one-off or recurring deposits from a linked account. Alternatively, you could open an RSP Savings Account and earn 3% interest on your tax-deferred money, or invest in an RSP GIC with an interest rate of up to 5.75%. Best of all, unlike other banks EQ Bank doesn’t charge fees when you deposit or withdraw funds from a TFSA or RRSP — saving you up to $50 per transaction and more of your hard-earned money stays in your pocket!

Best online bank in Canada with GICs: Tangerine

If you’re comparing the best online banks in Canada for investing in GICs, make sure you check out what Tangerine has to offer. This online-only bank offers GICs with terms ranging from 90 days to 5 years, and interest rates ranging from 1.5% to 6% depending on the term you choose. It’s easy to apply online in just a few minutes, and there’s no monthly fee that’s going to chip away at your savings balance. All that’s left to do is sit back, relax and watch your money grow.

Tangerine GIC

Open a Tangerine GIC within minutes. Earn 5.95% on a 1 year GIC, or choose from other terms and rates.

Best online bank in Canada for kids and teens: Mydoh

Want to teach your kids how to manage their money? MyMydohoh offers the best online banking in Canada for you. Its user-friendly Mydoh app provides access to your parent account, which you can use to set tasks for your kids to earn their allowance, send money to your children instantly, and track their spending. Your child gets their own kid’s account where they can manage their allowance tasks and track their earnings and spending, not to mention use their Mydoh Smart Cash Card to spend the funds in their account. The card can be used in-store and online anywhere Visa is accepted, making this a modern way to teach your kids about the value of money.

Mydoh Smart Cash Card

Teach your kids smart spending and independence. Set up tasks, pay allowances and monitor spending activity. Use promo code SAVE15 to get $15 deposited into your account.

Best online bank in Canada for newcomers and immigrants: National Bank Newcomers Chequing

One of the first things you need to do before or immediately after moving to a new country is choose a bank account. And if you’re a newcomer to Canada, we think National Bank has the best bank account offer for you. It entitles you to a chequing account with a waived $15.95 monthly fee for the first year, and then no fees or discounted fees for another two years when you sign up for specific National Bank products. You can also get access to a specialized support team to answer your questions about immigration, plus apply for a National Bank credit card with no Canadian credit history. And because you can apply up to 90 days before you arrive in Canada, and the offer is valid for up to five years after you arrive, it can help make the transition to your new home a whole lot easier.

National Bank Newcomer Bank Account

Open a chequing account with no fixed monthly fee for up to 3 years, plus get access to a Canadian National Bank Mastercard credit card without credit history.

What is the best bank to open online?

The best online bank for you depends on your financial needs and what you’re looking for in a bank. If you want to keep your money with a traditional, established bank — like one of the big six banks — or any of the other major financial institutions around Canada, all offer online and mobile banking. They also have the advantage of large branch and ATM networks for those transactions that need to be carried out in the real world rather than the digital one.

But if you’re looking for a savings account with a higher interest rate, or a no-fee chequing account with plenty of perks, you might find what you’re looking for with an online-only bank. With low overheads and plans to disrupt the world of traditional banking, these providers offer some of the best-value accounts around. And because they’re entirely online, they put a great deal of resources and effort into providing the most user-friendly online banking experience.

Ultimately, make sure you compare a wide range of options to find the best online banking in Canada for you.

What is the easiest bank to open online?

It’s quick and easy to open a bank account with any bank operating in Canada and with most credit unions. In most situations, you can apply online by providing:

  • Your name and SIN
  • Your address and contact details
  • Proof of ID (you can verify your identity digitally)

Some financial institutions, such as KOHO or Neo require you to download a banking app to your smartphone and then apply through the secure app.

No matter which bank you choose, the application process is more or less the same when applying for a new account online.

Is there a bank that is completely online?

Yes, lots of them. Online-only banks in Canada include:

  • Neo Financial
  • Simplii Financial
  • EQ Bank
  • KOHO
  • Manulife Bank
  • Motusbank
  • Tangerine
  • Wealthsimple

These banks don’t operate any physical branches, but they allow you to manage your money online, via a mobile app and over the phone. Plus, many of them are either associated with a Big 6 Bank, or have a working relationship with a bigger financial institution that gives customers easy access to ATMs and customer service.

Advantages of using an online bank account

  • Lower fees. Online banks don’t have the same overhead costs as banks that operate bricks and mortar branches. As a result, they can pass some of these savings on to their customers in the form of lower fees.
  • Higher interest rates. It’s also possible to find higher savings account interest rates at online banks. Compare high interest savings accounts to find out what’s available.
  • No more bank queues. Tired of standing in line waiting to be served at your bank? With an online bank, you can apply for accounts online and access customer support via live chat, phone and email. In some cases, support is available 24/7 so you can do your banking when it’s convenient.
  • Ease of use. Online banks in Canada put plenty of their resources into providing user-friendly online and mobile banking experiences. As a result, you may find that their platforms are easier to use than those of traditional banks.
  • CDIC insurance. Reputable online banks are CDIC members, so up to $100,000 you deposit is protected by CDIC insurance.

Disadvantages of using an online bank account

  • No branches. If you prefer to do your banking face-to-face, you’ll want to look for a bank with one or more branches near you.
  • Limited products. Online banks typically don’t offer the same range of products and services as major, established banks. So if you like to keep all your accounts with one institution, an online bank may not be the right choice for you.
  • Cash problems. With no branches and a potentially limited ATM network, depositing or withdrawing cash without incurring fees can be difficult. Depositing cash can be a particularly frustrating barrier to overcome, so keep this in mind if you regularly need to pay cash into your account.

Are online banks in Canada safe?

Yes. While it may seem a little strange at first dealing with a bank that doesn’t have any physical branches, online banks are safe. Most are members of the CDIC — check if your bank is a member before applying for an account — so you get peace of mind knowing your money is insured, up to $100,000 per account, if the bank goes bust.

Many online banks also have longer histories than you might realize or ties to much larger banks. Simplii Financial, for example, is the digital banking arm of CIBC, while EQ Bank is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Equitable Bank Group, which was founded in 1970.

Reputable online banks also employ the latest security technology and data encryption to protect your money and personal details. Plus there’s plenty you can do to protect yourself against fraud, like setting up two-factor authentication, never sharing your password with anyone, and not opening attachments in scam emails.

What features should you consider when choosing the best online bank account?

Consider the following features when comparing your options to help you find the best online banking in Canada:

  • Ease of use. Online banks offer do-it-yourself banking, so it’s important to make sure you choose a bank with online and mobile banking that is easy to use. Watch tutorials and read customer reviews to find the bank that offers the most user-friendly features.
  • Fees. Check whether the account has a monthly fee. Is the fee waived if you meet a minimum balance requirement? Read the fine print to find out about any other fees that may apply, such as ATM withdrawal or account inactivity fees.
  • Interest rates. Look for the best savings account interest rate. Some online banks offer tiered rates — the larger your balance, the higher your rate — while others have a flat rate. There are even accounts that pay interest on your balance but also provide easy access to your funds like a chequing account, so shop around to see what’s out there.
  • Customer support. Helpful and easily accessible customer support is a must for any online bank. Check how you can get in touch with the support team and during what hours.
  • ATM access. The next factor you need to consider when searching for the best online bank in Canada is the size of its ATM network. How many fee-free ATMs around Canada can you access?
  • Budgeting and money management tools. The best online banks in Canada often offer other tools to help you manage your money. These can include things like sub-accounts to help you save for specific goals, spending trackers and budgeting apps. While not essential, they’re nice to have and can help you get more out of your money.
  • Other perks. Don’t forget to check for any other perks or rewards an online bank offers. These could include cash back on purchases, discounts on credit card annual fees and other products, and

Types of online bank accounts in Canada

There are three main types of online bank accounts in Canada:

  • Online chequing accounts. Chequing accounts are used for day-to-day transactions like getting your paycheque, paying bills and making purchases in-store and online. Some have a monthly fee while others don’t.
  • Online savings accounts. Savings accounts pay a high rate of interest to help you grow your bank balance. Interest may be tiered or paid at a flat rate, and savings accounts typically don’t have monthly fees. However, you’ll need to watch out for transaction fees and limits.
  • Online hybrid accounts. Some accounts combine the features of both chequing and savings accounts, providing easy access to your money for everyday transactions while paying interest on your balance at the same time.

Online banks also provide access to a range of other financial products, including credit cards, RRSPs, TFSAs and GICs.

Alternatives and lesser-known online-only banks

From the online offerings of major banks to big online-only banks like EQ Bank and Tangerine, it’s easy to forget that there are plenty of other online banks in Canada. Some of the options you can consider include:

  • Smaller banks. Lesser-known financial institutions offer online-only banking in some cases as well as a mix of online and in-branch banking. Examples include:
    • Motive Financial. Run by Canadian Western Bank, Motive Financial is an online-only bank that offers a chequing account, savings account and investment options.
    • Wealth One Bank of Canada. This digital bank offers a savings account, mortgages, lines of credit and investment products. It also offers customer support in English, Mandarin and Cantonese.
    • Manulife Bank. A subsidiary of insurance and financial services company Manulife, this online-only bank offers chequing, savings and US dollar accounts as well as credit cards, mortgages, loans and investments.
    • ICICI Bank Canada. ICICI has branches in Alberta, BC, Ontario and Nova Scotia and offers a full suite of banking products.
  • Credit unions. If you’re searching for the best online banking in Canada, many credit unions have competitive offerings. Credit Unions like Alterna, Coast Capital, Meridian and Vancity all offer chequing and savings accounts you can manage via online or mobile banking.
  • Money apps. Providers like KOHO, Neo Financial and Mydoh provide mobile apps designed to make it easy to manage your money. Other perks like earning interest on your balance and cash back on purchases are often included too.

Best online chequing and savings accounts in Canada

1 - 4 of 4
Name Product Monthly Account Fee Free Transactions e-Transfer Fee Bonus Offer Offer
BMO Performance Chequing Account
BMO Performance Chequing Account
$16.95 (can be waived)
Earn $450
Earn $350. Plus, earn an additional $100 when you add a second member and make it a BMO Family Bundle. Valid until October 31, 2023. Plus, earn a 5.25% bonus interest rate when you add a Savings Amplifier Account.
Simplii No Fee Chequing Account
Simplii No Fee Chequing Account
Earn $400
Earn $400 when you become a new client and set up a direct deposit of at least $100 for 3 months. Offer ends October 31, 2023.
Neo Money Account
Neo Money Account
National Bank Newcomer Bank Account
National Bank Newcomer Bank Account
1 - 4 of 4
Name Product Promo Rate Regular Interest Rate Transaction Fee 1 Year Return Offer
KOHO Earn Interest
KOHO Earn Interest
Use promo code FINDERCODE and get a $20 cash bonus when you make your first purchase within 30 days.
EQ Bank Joint Account
EQ Bank Joint Account
3.00% for 12 months
Mydoh Smart Card
Mydoh Smart Card
Simplii High Interest Savings Account
Simplii High Interest Savings Account
6.00% for 5 months

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