N26 app and debit card review
Skip visits to the bank and control your money from an app.
finder.com’s rating: 4.5 / 5.0
N26 is a digital bank that launched its first checking account in the US in July 2019. It has unique perks like a cashback debit card and money management tools. But it doesn’t earn interest and ATM reimbursements are limited.
$0 per month
Minimum deposit to open
Charlie Barton is a publisher at Finder. He specialises in banking and investments products, including banking apps, current accounts, share-dealing platforms and stocks and shares ISAs. Charlie has a first-class degree from the London School of Economics, and in his spare time enjoys long walks on the beach.
Expert reviewN26 is best for those who like to manage and budget their funds. It goes beyond checking accounts as it also provides budgeting tools. Account holders are able to create subaccounts for their saving needs and view statistics based on their spending habits.
N26 was recently released to the U.S. in July 2019, so there aren’t many customer reviews at the moment.
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 — and customers can access their money with a contactless debit card.N26 is already operating in Ireland, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria, Belgium and a wide range of other European countries, and it launched in the US in July 2019.
Video: Alex Weber, head of international markets, on why N26 is different – December 2018
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
ProsN26 has app-based, so you control your accounts from your smartphone. Unique features include:
- Large ATM network. Use your N26 debit card for free at over 55,000 AllPoint ATMs worldwide.
- 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.
- Budgeting. Get automatic breakdowns of your purchases by category and put your money into sub-accounts so you don’t accidentally spend it.
- Early direct deposits. Receive direct deposits up to two days in advance with N26.
- Perks. Earn cashback when you use your N26 debit card for subscription services like Booking.com, Lime, Headspace, Babbel, Curology, Headout and more.
Although N26 has some unique perks, there are a few drawbacks to watch out for, including no bank branches:
- No interest. This account doesn’t earn any interest, so it’s not ideal for those who need a savings account.
- Limited product selection. Currently N26 only offers a checking account for US customers, so you won’t find any savings accounts here.
- Limited ATM reimbursements. N26 reimburses up to two non-network ATM fees a month. But several banks offer unlimited reimbursements. Expect to pay $2 for non-network ATM withdrawals over the monthly limit
- Surcharge for foreign currency withdrawals. Expect to pay a 2% fee when you withdraw money at a foreign ATM.
If you prefer a traditional checking account, you’ll want to keep looking. As always, compare your options when looking for a checking account.
Compare with other digital banks
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Image source: supplied, photographer: N26