Best Checking Accounts for Online Banking

Conor Keenan Author Bio By: Conor Keenan  Last updated on November 22, 2023
Conor Keenan is compareaccounts.com's co-founder. His work in personal finance has been featured by MSN, CNN, AOL, Fox News, Yahoo News & many more.

Editorial Freedom: The opinions, reviews, or recommendations in our articles are solely our own & are not endorsed by any financial institution or partner. Thanks to commissions from partner offers, our site remains free. Content by our team is independent & not commissioned by any advertising partners or financial institutions herein.

Right now, banks are offering some of the best checking deals in decades. It’s your time to cash in on these online banking offers.

Check out the best checking accounts for online banking recommended by our experts below, open your new account today and start taking advantage of these amazing accounts now.

 $300 Bonus 

Chase Bank Logo

Rating:

On Chase Bank's Secure Site,
Member FDIC

Best For: Easy $300 Bonus

Chase Bank is the largest bank in America and has been helping Americans make the most of their money for 100+ years.

New Chase checking customers enjoy a $300 bonus when you open a Chase Total Checking® account and make direct deposits totaling $500 or more within 90 days of coupon enrollment.

This account does come with a monthly service fee of $12. However, you can avoid this fee with qualifying activities such as electronic deposits made into this account totaling $500 or more.

Chase has one of the best mobile apps available to handle all of your online banking needs. You can make easy transfers using Zelle®, find a nearby ATM, deposit checks and more from your device.

Open your account today and set up direct deposit to earn this bonus as soon as possible.

See Chase Bank's Secure Site For More Details.

Discover Bank Logo

Rating:

On Discover Bank's Secure Site,
Member FDIC

Best For: Online Banking Experience + Customer Service

Unleash the power of no-fee banking combined with rewards!

Earn 1% cash back on up to $3,000 in debit card purchases monthly, all while protecting your money with comprehensive tools and features to prevent fraud, like the ability to freeze your debit card.

Discover Bank is one of the first online focused banks to offer no monthly fees and what they call "No. Fees. Period." That means you won’t pay a monthly fee, regardless of your monthly balance. You’ll enjoy fee-free overdraft protection, and you won’t pay a fee for insuffiecient funds.

Pair your free debit card with digital wallets like Apple Pay® to enjoy seemless transactions and gain access to over 60,000 fee-free ATMs nationwide.

Experience mobile-first banking with the Discover App, make quick transfers using Zelle®, find a nearby ATM, deposit checks and much more, all from your phone.

Best of all, your deposits are FDIC-insured up to $250,000 per depositor for peace of mind. And remember, Discover has US-based customer service available 24/7.

See Discover Bank's Secure Site For More Details.

 Compare With

Wells Fargo Logo

 Not Recommended 

Rating:

Not Recommended. Shown For Comparison Purposes Only.

Wells Fargo is one of the largest banks in the United States and also offers a one of the worst checking accounts.

They require a minimum monthly balance of $20,000 to avoid a $25 monthly maintenance fee and will charge you $35 per overdraft item up to 3 fees per day.

One of the few benefits of this account is Wells Fargo will reimburse the ATM fee for any non-Wells Fargo ATM, albeit only once per period in the US.

Because of the high fees with almost no benefits, we don't recommend you opening a checking account with Wells Fargo.

Cit Bank Logo

Rating:

On CIT Bank's Secure Site,
Member FDIC

Best For: ATM Rebates

CIT Bank has been helping customers for over 100 years. Founded in 1908, CIT Bank is now part of First Citizens BancShares, Inc.

CIT Bank's eChecking account offers 0.10% APY on balances under $25,000 and 0.25% APY for balances of $25,000+.

Minimum deposit required to open an account is $100. However, it does offer no monthly fees and no fees for online transfers.

CIT Bank does not have its own free ATM network. Because of this it offers up to $30 in other bank’s ATM fees reimbursed per month.

See CIT Bank's Secure Site For More Details.

 Compare With

Bank of America Logo

 Not Recommended 

Rating:

Not Recommended. Shown For Comparison Purposes Only.

Bank of America, another large bank that offers a lack luster checking account.

Although they offer some benefits like Zelle® and mobile deposits, they'll charge you a $12 monthly maintenance fee and a $10 over draft fee per item that can outweigh the benefits.

You can avoid the monthly fee by having a daily average balance of $1,500 or being a Preferred Rewards member, but you need a balance of $20,000 or more to be in the lowest tier of their Preferred Rewards program.

Because there are better options on this page to avoid fees from trusted banks, we don't recommend you opening a checking account with Bank of America.

 High Cash Back Rates 

Upgrade Savings Account Logo

Rating:

On Upgrade's Secure Site,
FDIC Insured

 

Best For: Direct Deposit + Debit Card Cash Back Rates

Upgrade was built from the ground up to deliver an excellent digital customer experience, evident in their top rated mobile app.

Upgrade currently offers up to 2% Cash Back on their Upgrade VISA® Debit Card for common everyday purchases and 1% cash back on everything else, with a current maximum of $500 in rewards per calendar year. Gain access to these rewarding cash back rates with recurring monthly direct deposits of $1,000+.

They offer this incredible debit card & checking account with no monthly fees, and no over draft fees.

You can even get paid up to 2 days early with a recurring direct deposit.

Upgrade is an incredible financial technology company, not a bank. Rewards checking plus accounts are provided by Cross River Bank, Member FDIC and serviced by Upgrade.

U.S. based customer service is available daily via phone or email. You can open a premier savings account with Upgrade in as little as 5 minutes to complete the sign-up process.

Deposits are insured through the FDIC for up to $250,000 per depositor and interest compounds daily.

Terms & conditions apply. See Upgrade's Secure Site For More Details.

To recap our recommendations.

Best Checking Accounts According To CompareAccounts™

Chase Total Checking® Account: Best For Easy $300 Bonus

Discover® Bank Cashback Debit: Best for Online Banking Experience + Customer Service

U.S. Bank Smartly® Checking Account: Best For Branch Access + Bonus

Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus Account: Best For Direct Deposit + Debit Card Cash Back Rates

CIT Bank® eChecking Account: Best For ATM Rebates

Customers Also Viewed These High-Yield Savings Accounts

Discover Bank Logo

4.25% APY

Rating:

On Discover Bank's Secure Site,
Member FDIC

Best For: Online Banking Experience + No Fees

Discover Bank offers 4.25% APY with no monthly fees and $0 initial deposit.

Discover Bank is one of the first online focused banks to offer no monthly fees and what they call "No. Fees. Period."

Whereas other banks may charge you a fee for certain services, Discover won't charge you a fee on any of the following items: monthly maintenance, official bank check, expedited delivery for official bank checks, deposited item returned, stop payment order, insufficient funds, or for closing your account.

If you're looking for a competitive APY with "No. Fees. Period." this account is for you.

See Discover Bank's Secure Site For More Details.

4.25% APY

Rating:

On U.S. Bank National Association's
Secure Site, Member FDIC

Best For: Branch Access

U.S. Bank offers new Elite Money Market Account clients up to 4.25% APY with a $25,000 deposit. 

A minimum $100 initial deposit is required to open the account.

U.S. Bank has over 2,000 branch locations in more than half of U.S. states.

Deposits are insured through the FDIC for up to $250,000 per depositor and if you have any questions U.S. Bank offers "24-Hour Banking" meaning a customer service representative is available 24/7.

In order to earn the 4.25% APY, you must have a balance of $25,000 or more. If you're planning on depositing less than $25,000, we recommend choosing a different account.

Avoid maintence fees with an average daily balance of $10,000 or more.

See U.S. Bank's Secure Site For More Details.

What to Look for in a Checking Account

It’s always wise to compare your options when opening a new checking account.

Small differences in interest rates and fees can quickly add up over time.

Here are the top features to look for and compare:

Affordability: One should prioritize checking accounts with minimal or no fees. Regular monthly charges, transaction fees, and ATM fees can add up, making no-cost or low-cost banking an appealing feature.

Accessibility: A good checking account offers easy access to funds. This includes a vast ATM network, convenient online transfers, and comprehensive mobile banking options.

Digital Banking Experience: In today’s digital age, a top-tier online and mobile banking platform is essential. One should look for intuitive interfaces, secure transactions, and a variety of digital features.

Robust Security: The safety of funds should be a priority. Prospective account holders should ensure that the bank has stringent security measures and offers protection against unauthorized transactions.

Overdraft Solutions: Overdraft protection can be a lifesaver for many. It’s beneficial to find accounts that offer features to prevent hefty overdraft charges or provide low-cost alternatives to cover accidental overdraws.

Competitive Interest Rates: While not common for all checking accounts, some do provide interest on the balances. Even modest interest rates can be a welcome perk.

Customer Support: Stellar customer service can make all the difference. Whether it’s a quick query or an urgent issue, efficient, friendly, and accessible customer support can be invaluable.

Account Perks: Some checking accounts offer additional benefits. These can range from cashback rewards to discounts with partnering businesses. It’s worth exploring these added bonuses.

Minimum Balance Clauses: An ideal checking account should have lenient or no minimum balance requirements. This ensures that account holders aren’t penalized or restricted due to their account balance.

Transparency: Finally, the terms and conditions governing the account should be clear and understandable. Potential account holders should steer clear of accounts with hidden clauses or ambiguous language, seeking instead those institutions that prioritize clarity and transparency.

While the perfect checking account might vary based on individual preferences, this guide offers a roadmap for anyone looking to make an informed choice.

*National Savings Rate Average as published by FDIC