N26 app + debit card review August 2019 | finder.com

N26 app and debit card review

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  • Spending statistics
  • A fully mobile bank account
  • Your money goals personalized

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Skip visits to the bank and control your money from an app.

N26 lets you manage your money fully within an app, and it’s making its way to the US soon.

Monthly fee$0
ATM transaction fee$2
ATM fee rebates$0 fee on first 2 ATM withdrawals
Out-of-network ATM fee$2
Foreign transaction fee0%
Nonsufficient funds fee$0
Deposit methods Ways to deposit
  • Cash by teller
  • Cash by ATM
  • Check by teller
  • Check by ATM
  • Mobile/remote check deposit
  • Bank transfer
  • Wire transfer
  • Direct deposit

What is N26?

N26 is a digital bank headquartered in Germany. It offers fully digital checking accounts that are controlled from within an app — and without any branches.

N26 is already operating in Ireland, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria, Belgium and a wide range of other European countries. It plans to expand to the US soon, and users can sign up for early access on the site.

Video: Alex Weber, head of international markets, on why N26 is different

How does N26 work?

N26 accounts are opened and operated online, and the bank offers both free and premium accounts. It works like a checking account, and customers can access their money with a contactless debit card.

Accounts are controlled within the N26 app. In countries where the bank has already launched, features include:

  • Transfers. Send, receive and even request money from friends instantly. And by partnering with TransferWise, N26 also supports international transfers into 19 foreign currencies directly within the app. It claims to be six times cheaper than using traditional banks.
  • Google Pay. N26 supports Google Pay, so you can use your phone to make payments in stores, and also use Google Pay to make purchases online.
  • In-app security. Set and change daily spend/withdrawal limits, reset your PIN, lock or unlock your card and enable or disable online or foreign payments.
  • Spending statistics. Get automatic breakdowns of your purchases by category. You can also create your own personal tags to organize your transactions.
  • Spaces. Saving up for a particular goal, like a bike or a holiday? Put money into sub-accounts so you don’t accidentally spend it.
  • MoneyBeam. Send money to smartphone contacts, without even knowing their bank account details. Money is sent to fellow N26 users instantly, or within two days if they’re not with N26.

Is N26 safe?

The app itself has a three-tier security procedure protecting your account and transactions. Your account can only be paired to one smartphone at a time, you must log in to your account using your password or fingerprint, and you must verify all online and offline transactions with your PIN.

N26 also offers a Bug Bounty program that offers cash rewards to encourage security researchers to track down bugs or vulnerabilities and it is FDIC-insured through its partner bank, Axos Bank.

Pros and cons of N26

Information on exactly how the app will work in the US is still being released. But in countries where N26 is already available, benefits and drawbacks include:


  • Easy to manage and track your spending in real time
  • Your account can be accessed on your phone or via N26’s web app
  • In-app security features such as card lock/unlock
  • All payments, both national and international, completed within one working day
  • Fee-free card transactions abroad
  • Safe and secure
  • Partnership with TransferWise means seamless transfers to 19 currencies
  • MoneyBeam lets you transfer money to friends and family instantly
  • Unlimited cash withdrawals


  • Surcharge for foreign currency withdrawals, although it’s competitive with other similar banks
  • No bank branches

Compare with other digital banks

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2.02% on balances of $2,000+
0.01% on balances of $0 to $1,999
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Banking and budgeting in one simple app.
38,000 fee-free ATMs nationwide
No overdraft fees. No monthly maintenance fees. No monthly service fees. No minimum balance fees. No deposit required. No foreign transaction fees. Over 38,000+ fee-free MoneyPass ATMs.
42,000 ATMs nationwide
(can be waived)
GoBank provides tools to help you build a budget and stick to it. No overdraft fees. Monthly and other fees apply.
42,000 ATMs across the country
Moven automatically analyzes your spending and gives you instant receipts and insights so you can spend, save and live smarter.
Over 55,000 fee-free Allpoint ATMs
(can be waived)
An account designated specifically for students with access to over 55,000 fee-free Allpoint ATMs, money management tools and a one-of-a-kind recognition program.
55,000 AllPoint ATMs around the world for free
No monthly fees. No foreign transaction fees. No fees at 55,000+ Allpoint ATMs.

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Bottom line

In countries where N26 is available, it offers features geared towards tech-savvy customers in its app. But there isn’t much information available on what exactly it’ll look like when it launches in the US.

If you want to be one of the first to find out, sign up for the waiting list on the N26 website. But if you need an account now, compare checking accounts to find one that fits your needs.

Frequently asked questions

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Image source: supplied, photographer: N26

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