Best Checking Accounts of 2022

Banking

Having the right checking account comes with several benefits and conveniences, from free ATMs to automatic bill pay. Your checking account can also end up costing you money in the form of monthly maintenance fees and overdraft charges.

Finding the best fit depends on various factors, including how you make deposits, what type of balance you carry, and how you spend.

To help narrow down your choices, we’ve compiled a list of the year’s best checking accounts in different categories. Even if you already have a checking account, it’s smart to review your options to make sure your bank is working for you.

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Online Checking Accounts

Many people prefer the convenience of a strong online presence with great customer service over going to a bank’s physical location. Luckily, there are plenty of heavy-hitters with online checking options for anyone who’s constantly on the go.

Check out our best checking accounts that allow you to handle all your banking needs online.

Chime

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Chime® is the best checking account for those seeking a low-cost digital banking option, with no monthly fees, hidden charges, or account balance minimums to worry about.

Although they don’t have physical branch locations, you’ll have access to your money through its network of more than 60,000 fee-free1 ATMs. You can also use its in-built capability to send money to friends and family or pay bills.

Applying for a Chime account is free and has no impact on your credit score. There’s no minimum opening balance to get started.

Plus, if you set up direct deposit with your new account, you’ll get access to your funds up to two days2 earlier than you might at a competing bank.

Upgrade

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The Upgrade Rewards Checking account has no monthly fees, no ATM fees, and no transfer fees. Plus, you’ll get up to 2% cash back on everyday debit card purchases.

If you use an out-of-network ATM, Upgrade will give you a rebate on up to five ATM fees per month if you meet certain conditions.

Upgrade has a bank partnership with Cross River Bank, Member FDIC. Your funds are FDIC-insured up to $250,000. You can also get up to 20% lower rate on Upgrade loans and credit cards.

Capital One 360

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Capital One 360 offers big bank perks with online convenience.

This free checking account doesn’t have any minimum balance requirement and allows you to earn a small amount of interest regardless of your deposit size. A Capital One 360 checking account gets you access to 70,000 fee-free ATMs throughout the U.S. from either Allpoint or Capital One.

Other great features are that Capital One provides mobile deposit, which allows you to deposit your checks into your account right from your smartphone. Also, there are no foreign transaction fees.

This versatile checking account provides two overdraft protection options. The first is a free savings transfer. Just sign up for a 360 savings account and any overdrafted funds will be transferred from your savings to your checking account.

High Interest Rate Checking Accounts

Interest rates on any type of bank account aren’t very high today, but that doesn’t mean they’re unheard of. And while you usually have to open a savings account to receive any type of yield on your balance, there are some checking accounts that offer interest on your deposits. Here are our top picks.

Aspiration

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Offering one of the highest interest rates currently available, Aspiration is an FDIC-insured financial institution with no monthly fees.

You’ll get a full 5.00% APY on balances up to $10,000 when you spend $1,000 a month with your Aspiration Plus Spend & Save Account. Otherwise, they offer a 3.00% APY.

This hybrid checking-savings account pays you 10% cashback on qualified purchases. Another attractive quality is that there is no minimum balance or minimum deposit required each month. There are also no overdraft fees.

Like any other bank, you can order debit cards and personal checks. You can use any ATM in the world for free because Aspiration will automatically reimburse all fees you incur from ATMs straight to your account. This makes it an excellent choice if you are a frequent traveler.

Axos Bank

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Axos Bank is an online bank that offers no monthly maintenance fees, full reimbursement for fees incurred while using any ATM in the US, and some pretty competitive cash back rewards.

You’ll also get a $100 sign-up bonus with qualifying direct deposits and earn up to 1.25% APY.

Axos has zero overdraft fees for people who spend more than what is in their checking account.

If you are looking for a checking account with no fees, Axos Bank is a strong choice.

Bank5 Connect

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Our final pick for the best high-interest checking accounts is Bank5 Connect. This is a great choice because you only need a $100 deposit to start earning interest.

While the 0.76% APY is lower than other options, it is much more accessible with such a low balance minimum. You also don’t have to worry about monthly maintenance fees and can use any ATM in the country for free. Anytime you’re charged at an ATM, Bank5 will reimburse your account up to $15 per fee on each statement cycle.

Bank5 gives you your first order of checks for free in addition to offering a checking rewards program. UChoose Rewards lets you earn one point for every $2 you spend.

Credit Union Checking Accounts

Credit unions typically require some type of common bond to qualify for membership, like working in a particular industry or living in a specific community. However, many national credit unions have wide membership requirements, but they offer some great financial products once you’re in.

Establish a strong relationship with a credit union and you’ll set the stage to get approved for future financial needs, including personal loans or car loans.

Alliant Credit Union

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Alliant offers an easy, free checking account that boasts no monthly service fees and no account minimums. There are over 80,000 ATMs you can use for free, and Alliant will give you up to $20 a month in reimbursements for any ATM fees you accumulate.

Of course, your Visa debit card is free, as is your first box of checks. Alliant also provides both online banking and mobile apps, which makes your account compatible with Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay.

Yes, you can sign up for overdraft protection and courtesy pay — a smart choice because who wants to worry about their card being declined at the register? If you go with Alliant Credit Union, your account will be insured to at least $250,000 by the NCUA.

Consumers Credit Union

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Based in Michigan, Consumers Credit Union is available nationwide and has a high yield checking account that’s worth looking into.

The interest rate structure is based on a tiered system based on your account balance.

Here’s how the tiers play out:

  • $0 to $9,999: 0.15% APY
  • $10,000 to $24,999: 0.20% APY
  • $25,000 to $49,999: 0.25%
  • $50,000 to $99,999: 0.30%
  • $100,000 to 249,999: 0.35%
  • $250,000+: 0.40%

While those higher tiers may be better served in a high interest savings account (unless you have high dollar cash flows throughout the month), the lower tiers are quite competitive for a checking account.

Or you can use online bill pay once a month, access your online banking monthly, and enroll to receive eDocuments rather than paper statements. There are also tiers available earning 3.59% APY on balances up to $15,000 and 4.59% on balances up to $20,000.

Connexus

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Connexus offers checking account members various free services, including free online and mobile banking, bill pay, and eStatements.

You have a few different options as to which checking account you’d like, all come with no minimum balance requirements. With Connexus you don’t have to worry about being penalized for not leaving a lot of money in there.

Connexus offers above-average interest rates; in fact, you can earn up to 1.75% APY.

You can apply for overdraft protection as a line of credit attached to your checking account, so rather than paying overdraft fees or having your card declined when you’re checking out at a store, you essentially borrow the amount of funds you’re short on. The fixed APR for this service is 18%.

Checking Accounts with Sign-Up Bonuses

A little free cash never hurt anyone, and two banks are currently offering some attractive sign-up bonuses. That means if you follow a few guidelines upon signing up, you’ll get a pre-determined deposit of cash right into your new checking account. Here are today’s best deals for checking accounts with sign-up bonuses.

TD Bank

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TD Bank is currently offering two sign-up bonuses for new customers opening up a checking account. The first is for a $150 bonus when you sign up for the TD Convenience Checking account.

You’ll need to set up direct deposit and receive at least $500 in that kind of deposit within 60 days of opening your account.

The other offer for new customers is a $300 bonus for a new TD Premier Checking account. You’ll need to receive at least $2,500 in direct deposits within the first 60 days to qualify.

Also, make sure you live in one of the following states to qualify: Connecticut, Washington, DC, Delaware, Florida, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Virginia, or Vermont.

TD Bank does have a $25 monthly maintenance fee for the Premier account, but it will be waived as long as you keep your balance at $2,500 or above. The $15 monthly maintenance fee for the Convenience account can be waived with a $100 minimum balance. There is also an account closing fee of $15.

Chase

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Chase currently offers a similar promotion for new customers. You can receive a $200 bonus by setting up a direct deposit into your Chase Total Checking account.

You’ll need to start with a minimum deposit of $25 to open the account, and then link an employer or government benefit to deposit directly into your Chase account within 60 days. You’ll then receive the bonus within just 10 days of completing these actions.

For this account, Chase does charge a monthly service fee of $12 unless you qualify for one of these exemptions:

  • At least $500 in monthly direct deposits
  • $1,500 minimum daily balance
  • Daily average balance of $5,000 in all linked Chase accounts

For a larger sign-up bonus, consider the Chase Premier Plus Checking account. You can receive $300 if you sign up with direct deposit and open the account with at least $25. You’ll also need to keep the account open for at least six months.

There is a $25 monthly fee associated with this account, but here’s how you can get that waived:

  • Maintain an average daily balance of $15,000 across Chase accounts
  • Sign up for autopay on your Chase mortgage

Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services and debit card provided by The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank, N.A., Members FDIC, pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc. and may be used everywhere Visa debit cards are accepted.

1. Out-of-network ATM withdrawal fees may apply with Chime except at MoneyPass ATMs in a 7-Eleven, or any Allpoint or Visa Plus Alliance ATM.

2. Early access to direct deposit funds depends on the timing of the submission of the payment file from the payer. Chime generally make these funds available on the day the payment file is received, which may be up to 2 days earlier than the scheduled payment date.

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