BMO Practical Chequing Account review
Pay a low monthly fee to get 12 free transactions per month with this basic chequing account from BMO.
12 transactions per month for free
The BMO Practical Chequing Account is a cheap and easy way to bank if you don’t use your chequing account often. You’ll pay a monthly fee of $4 to maintain this account and you’ll get 12 free transactions per month, including free Interac e-Transfers up to your allowable limit. The downside of this account is that it comes with relatively few additional benefits, and you’ll have to pay an extra fee every time you exceed your monthly transaction limit.
- Think about this account if you have simple banking needs and you tend to carry out most transactions using your credit card.
- Choose something else if you’re looking for tons of extra benefits or you’d like to earn interest on the balance you hold in your account.
- There are no minimum income requirements to qualify for this account.
What are the benefits of the BMO Practical Chequing Account?
The BMO Practical Chequing Account is a bare-bones account that offers relatively few benefits given its low price. These include the following:
- Low monthly fee. This account only costs $4 per month to maintain – which is by far the lowest fee that BMO charges for a chequing account.
- 12 transactions per month for free. You’ll get 12 transactions per month for free, which should be adequate if you use your credit card to pay your bills and make purchases.
- Free Interac e-Transfers. You can easily send money to family and friends for free as long as you stay within your monthly transaction limits.
- Free BMO ATM withdrawals. You won’t pay anything extra to take money out at ATMs on the BMO network unless you go over your allowable transactions.
- Free savings account. You’ll be able to add a BMO Premium Rate Savings Account onto your bank plan for no extra cost.
- No monthly fee for seniors. You can get this account for free if you’re over the age of 60 when you sign up.
What should I look out for?
While this account comes with a handful of benefits, you should also keep an eye out for the following drawbacks:
- No interest on savings. You won’t get a return on interest for any money you hold in your account.
- Fee for overdraft protection. You’ll have to pay $5 per month to get overdraft protection if you dip into a negative balance.
- Fee for exceeding 12 transactions. You’ll have to pay an extra $1.25 every time you make a transaction that exceeds your monthly limit.
- Non-BMO ATMs cost money. It will cost you an extra fee of $2 to take money out at non-BMO ATMs (and $3 in the U.S., $5 outside Canada and U.S.).
- No welcome bonus. Unlike other BMO chequing accounts, this account doesn’t come with a welcome bonus when you sign up.
- Limited benefits. You won’t get any extra benefits such as credit card fee waivers or identity theft protection with this account.
BMO Practical Chequing Account‘s ATM network and fees
The BMO Practical Chequing Account comes with a low monthly fee of $4. This works out to an annual fee of $48, which is reasonable for a basic account. You can also get this fee waived if you’re over the age of 60.
As part of the BMO Practical Chequing Account, you’ll also get free ATM withdrawals on the BMO network. That said, you’ll be required to pay a fee for taking money out on any non-BMO ATM. This includes those located in Canada as well as abroad.
What other chequing options does BMO offer?
You can choose from a number of BMO chequing accounts if the BMO Practical Chequing Account isn’t quite what you’re looking for:
- BMO Plus Chequing Account. The BMO Plus Chequing Account comes with a decent welcome bonus, unlimited free Interac e-Transfers and 25 free transactions each month. In return, you’ll pay $11.95 per month to maintain your account.
- BMO Performance Chequing Account. This account offers unlimited free transactions and free Interac e-Transfers. It also comes with a generous welcome bonus and a basic credit card rebate for $16.95 per month.
- BMO Premium Chequing Account. This account has the most premium benefits of all of BMO’s chequing accounts. These include unlimited free transactions, a sizable welcome bonus and a premium credit card fee waiver.
Compare with other chequing accounts
How do I open a BMO Practical Chequing Account?
To apply for a BMO Practical Chequing Account, you need to meet the following criteria:
- Be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident who is at least 18 years old (19 in some provinces)
- Be opening a sole account in your name
Required documents and information
- Your name, residential status and contact information
- Your Social Insurance Number (optional) and date of birth
- Your email address and phone number
How do I deposit or withdraw my money?
You’ll be able to deposit and withdraw funds from your account in a number of ways:
- Visit a branch. You can deposit or withdraw money by visiting a BMO branch in person to speak to an agent.
- Use an ATM. You can cash cheques and deposit or withdraw funds at any ATM in Canada or abroad – though you’ll have to pay associated fees for using non-BMO ATMs.
- Initiate a transfer. You can transfer money back and forth between your accounts as you see fit using an internal/bank-to-bank transfer or an Interac e-Transfer.
The BMO Practical Chequing Account is a bare-bones account that gives you 12 free transactions per month for a very low monthly fee. It also comes with free BMO ATM withdrawals and free Interac e-Transfers, up to your maximum limit of transactions each month. This account is a good fit for customers with very simple banking needs, but it’s not ideal for those who carry out multiple or complex transactions every month.