The 6 best online checking accounts
- Best for cash back: Discover Cashback Debit account
- Best for travel: Charles Schwab High Yield Investor Checking account
- Best overall: Capital One 360 Checking account
Finder may earn compensation from partners, but editorial opinions are our own. Advertiser Disclosure
This article was reviewed by Marguerita Cheng, a member of the Finder Editorial Review Board and award-winning advocate for ethical financial planning for over 20 years.
The best online checking account gives you complete control over your day-to-day transactions without ever having to enter the bank — usually with lower fees. We researched over 160 checking accounts and dug into factors like ATM access, fees, balance requirements to determine your six best options.
What’s changed in 2021?
We added Bluevine to our list as the best online checking account for businesses because it has no transaction limits, no monthly fees, a 1% APY and it accepts cash deposits. We replaced Simple with Chime as it’s being discontinued in the near future.
Take a closer look at the best online checking accounts by exploring their pros, cons and features.
|Fee||$0 per month|
|Minimum deposit to open||$0|
Consider these factors when trying to find the best online checking account for you:
An online checking account is an everyday bank product that you open and maintain entirely online. You can pay for purchases and access cash with a debit card and manage your funds online or with a mobile app.
Some online checking accounts are operated by completely digital banks or new challenger banks, while others are operated by major banks and credit unions.
Yes. Online banks operate like brick-and-mortar banks and allow you to withdraw cash from ATMs. Many digital banks partner with ATM networks, including Allpoint and MoneyPass, to let you access your cash at surcharge-free ATMs nationwide. Some online checking accounts will also reimburse you for ATM fees every month so you can withdraw money at any ATM that’s convenient for you.
You can also withdraw money from an online checking account by getting cash back at a store when you use a debit card, using money transfer services and requesting your bank to send you a check.
Here are a few benefits and disadvantages of an online checking account:
Yes, as long as you use an FDIC-insured bank. When you keep your money in an FDIC-insured bank, your funds are backed by the US government for up to $250,000. But to keep your account and personal information secure, be aware of:
Sort this table by minimum deposit to open, ATMs and ATM fees to find an account that’s right for you. Click the “Compare” box next to your top choices to view them side-by-side.
If you’re tech savvy and prefer to manage your finances independently, an online checking account can offer convenience and low fees. But if you regularly get help at your local bank branch, the tradeoff might not be worth it. To make sure you’re choosing an account that’s the right fit for you, compare other checking accounts before making a decision.
Image source: Getty Images
First Boulevard offers banking services tailored to Black Americans, but it’s currently waitlisted.
Compare expansion loans for startups and established businesses.
First Commonwealth Bank’s Hometown Checking + Interest + Solutions account has attractive features, but could cost you.
Support your child’s financial knowledge and teach the important real-life money skills in a safe and controlled way with a kids’ debit card.
First Commonwealth Bank’s Hometown Checking has many attractive features, but overdrafts can add up quickly.
First Commonwealth Bank’s Hometown Checking + Interest account has decent features but earns a low APY.
The Mission Money debit card is completely free, but it lacks features.
Lance Banking is designed to help freelancers with budgeting, tax payments and savings.
Banks that offer early direct deposit can benefit your financial life in several ways.
A free savings account that earns 0.55% APY once you meet the $100 opening deposit requirement.
finder.com is an independent comparison platform and information service that aims to provide you with the tools you need to make better decisions. While we are independent, the offers that appear on this site are from companies from which finder.com receives compensation. We may receive compensation from our partners for placement of their products or services. We may also receive compensation if you click on certain links posted on our site. While compensation arrangements may affect the order, position or placement of product information, it doesn't influence our assessment of those products. Please don't interpret the order in which products appear on our Site as any endorsement or recommendation from us. finder.com compares a wide range of products, providers and services but we don't provide information on all available products, providers or services. Please appreciate that there may be other options available to you than the products, providers or services covered by our service.