Premium Checking Accounts

A premium checking account is a traditional checking account plus some added benefits. They are advertised by banks and credit unions alike.

Usually, premium accounts are designed to make both the customer and banks happier.

They come with added perks that at the same time encourage customers to keep more money with the bank or credit union and have additional requirements to keep them active.

In This Article

Benefits of Premium Checking

Premium checking account benefits vary, but some perks include:

  • No-fee ATM transactions
  • No monthly service charge (if you meet a minimum balance requirement)
  • Free checking accounts
  • Free savings account transactions
  • Personal checks
  • Fee money orders
  • Rewards points

You may also get to take advantage of exclusive financial offerings such as credit cards or free brokerage services.

Who is Premium Checking Best For?

A premium checking account is a good option for someone looking to get more perks through their bank – as long as you’re able to meet the minimum balance requirements to avoid paying for it.

If you can’t meet these requirements, you really have to make sure that the perks you get – like fee-free ATMs and APY earnings – outweigh the cost of your premium account fee.

It’s also an excellent option for someone who likes to do banking with one financial institution and keep everything – their checking account, savings accounts, and credit cards – in one place.

If that’s you, it’s probably worth getting the upgrade to premium.

How To Qualify for Premium Checking

Anyone eligible to open a bank account can also get a premium bank account.

However, keep in mind that you will typically need to keep a higher minimum balance and you may get hit with a monthly fee if you aren’t able to maintain that balance.

You can also expect to have a high minimum deposit to get started.

Whether or not it makes sense for you to carry a premium checking account depends on how you plan on using the account.

If you can meet the minimum balance requirements and frequently use out-of-network ATMs, for example, it might make sense for you to choose a premium account.

Also, consider if the premium account offers a rewards program you are interested in and an annual percentage yield (APY) worth considering.

Many banks advertise these accounts as interest-bearing, but the interest they earn is variable.

7 Best Premium Checking Account Options

There are many options to choose from when it comes to premium accounts since most banks offer them one form or another.

Here are the seven best premium checking accounts for you below.

  1. Chase Premier Plus Checking
  2. Chase Sapphire Banking
  3. Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards
  4. Bank of America’s Advantage Relationship Banking
  5. Citigold® by Citibank
  6. Wells Fargo’s Portfolio Premium Checking
  7. U.S. Bank’s Platinum Checking

1. Chase Premier Plus Checking “Chase

Chase Premier Plus Checking has a $25 monthly fee. To avoid the fee, you will have to keep a minimum balance of $15,000 in linked Chase accounts every month or have a linked first mortgage enrolled in automatic payments.

Benefits

  • Earning interest
  • No charges for the first four out-of-network ATM withdrawals
  • Free counter checks, money orders, and cashier’s checks
  • Waived service fee on a selection of other linked accounts
  • Up to two additional personal checking accounts with no monthly service fee

2. Chase Sapphire Banking “Chase

Chase Sapphire Banking is a higher-tier plan. It charges $25 per month, just like Chase Premier Plus.

To waive this fee, you will have to meet a higher minimum balance requirement of $75,000 in linked Chase accounts, including savings account and investments.

Benefits

  • Free ATMs + ATM fees charged by other banks worldwide automatically refunded
  • No fees for wire transfers or to request stop payments
  • Some selected linked accounts qualify for better interest rates
  • The first four overdrafts come at no cost, within the current and prior 12 statement periods

3. Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards “Bank

Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards requires you to be account holders and maintain an average daily balance of $20,000 in your Bank of America deposit accounts and Merrill® investment accounts combined to qualify.

It is divided into three tiers: Gold, Platinum, and Platinum Honors.

Each tier offers the same benefits but at a greater scope as you move up the tiers. For example, if the Gold tier gives you an interest boost of 5%, Platinum offers a 10% boost, and so on.

Gold ($20,000 to $50,000 combined balance to qualify)

  • Boosts your interest rate by an extra 5%
  • Merril Guided Investing comes at an annual 0.05% discount
  • 25% rewards bonus for eligible credit cards
  • Interest rates discounts on home equity (0.125%) and auto personal loans (0.25%)
  • Waived maintenance fee on up to 4 eligible checkings and 4 savings accounts
  • Mortgage origination fee discounted by $200

Platinum ($50,000 to $100,000 combined balance to qualify)

  • Boosts your interest rate by an extra 10%
  • Up to 12 no-fee transactions out of BofA ATM networks per year
  • Merril Guided Investing comes at an annual 0.10% discount
  • 50% rewards bonus for eligible credit cards
  • Interest rates discounts on home equity (0.250%) and auto loans (0.35%)
  • No overdraft protection transfer fees and free check orders
  • Waived maintenance fee on up to 4 eligible checkings and 4 savings accounts
  • Mortgage origination fee discounted by $400

Platinum Honors ($100,00 to 250,000 combined balance to qualify)

  • Boosts your interest rate by an extra 20%
  • Unlimited no-fee ATM transactions out of BofA ATM networks
  • Merril Guided Investing comes at an annual 0.15% discount
  • 75% rewards bonus for eligible credit cards
  • Interest rates discounts on home equity (0.375%) and auto loans (0.50%)
  • Waived maintenance fee on up to 4 eligible checkings and 4 savings accounts
  • Mortgage origination fee discounted by $600.

4. Bank of America’s Advantage Relationship Banking “Bank

Bank of America’s Advantage Relationship Banking is more attainable for anyone who wants to enroll in a premium account but doesn’t qualify for Preferred Rewards.

To enroll in Advantage Relationship Banking, you can either be a member of Preferred Rewards, keep a combined balance of $10,000 in eligible linked accounts, or pay a monthly fee of $25.

This premium checking account is interest-bearing and gives you access to several discounted services and free goods such as paper checks.

5. Citibank’s Premium Checking – Citigold® “Citibank

Citibank’s premium checking account is called Citigold®. To qualify for free, you will have to maintain a combined average balance of $200,000 between linked deposit, retirement, and investment accounts.

Benefits

  • A team dedicated only to your banking needs and Citi Personal Wealth Management with a personal wealth advisor can guide you through investing decisions.
  • Preferred pricing and rated on selected financial products or services.
  • ATM fee refunds and free checkbooks.
  • Access to exclusive market insights and investing capabilities, such as mobile banking equity trades with Citi Personal Wealth Management for only $2.95. (the FDIC does not insure investment products)
  • Extra CitiThankYou reward points that you can use to get various benefits, cashback, and more

6. Wells Fargo’s Portfolio Premium Checking “Wells

Wells Fargo’s “Portfolio” premium checking account currently has a $25 monthly fee.

This fee is waived if you maintain $20,000 or more in combined bank deposits.

Benefits

  • Wells Fargo dedicated team
  • It is an interest-earning checking account
  • Interest rate bonus and fee waivers
  • There are no fees for any ATMs, but reimbursement doesn’t apply unless you keep combined balances of at least $250,000
  • Cashier checks and money orders are free
  • Free access to Wells Fargo Online with Bill Pay
  • Same-day electronic direct deposits, wire transfers, and check deposits

7. U.S. Bank’s Platinum Checking “US

U.S. Bank’s Platinum Checking monthly service fee is $24.99 unless you have $25,000 in combined personal deposits or credit balances.

Benefits

  • No ATM transaction fees worldwide provided that the non-U.S. Banks participate in the MoneyPass Network. Otherwise, surcharges from other financial institutions may apply. No rebates.
  • Interest-bearing (it earns an APY)
  • No overdraft charges
  • Free paper statements.
  • Monthly maintenance fee waived for additional family member accounts
  • The first box of U.S. Bank logo checks free
  • Safe deposits box discounts
  • S. Bank Visa Debit Card included in the package, plus online and mobile banking with mobile deposit and bill pay.
  • The Platinum Select Money Market Account; exclusive savings account with special interest rates.

Should You Get a Premium Checking Account?

To decide whether you should opt for a premium checking account or stick with a regular one, we need to answer this list of further questions first:

Do you qualify for a free premium checking account?

  • YES → Get it, you’ve got nothing to lose!
  • NO → Answer a few more questions to find out of it’s worth it for you.

Can you afford to pay the monthly fee if you can’t always maintain the average minimum balance required?

  • YES → Great, keep reading.
  • NO Maybe a premium bank account is not the best choice for you.

How often do you use out-of-network ATMs, write checks, and make use of the features of your account that would be included in the premium perks?

  • VERY OFTEN A premium account might make sense for you.
  • NOT SO OFTEN → You might not need it (but could still get it if you wanted to have the option of these perks).

Premium Checking Account FAQs

What is a premium checking account?

A premium checking account is very similar to a regular checking account but with some added perks.

You often need to keep a minimum balance in your bank account. Otherwise, your financial institution will charge you extra fees.

Only you can decide if the benefits outweigh the costs of the premium checking account you choose.

If you are a frequent user of the many perks such as free use of out-of-network ATMs, for example, it may be a good move to sign up for premium.

How do I cancel my premium account?

Different banks usually have different combinations of methods that enable you to cancel a premium account.

Most banks let you cancel your premium checking account in one or more of 4 different ways:

  1. By calling the customer service number, you can find it on the bank’s website and requesting to cancel your premium subscription. They will usually guide you through the necessary steps to cancel your premium account.
  2. By emailing customer service. They should be able to help you with that. Sometimes banks have a general customer service email, and other times they will have a dedicated one only for premium subscribers. Check before you send the email.
  3. Visit a local branch and talk to a representative. Explain why you want to cancel it and they’ll be able to help.
  4. Some banks (Chase, for example) will allow you to cancel your subscription through a secure message from your online banking account. It’s very convenient but not always available.

If you are outside of the United States, you might have to mail a form over to the main branch of your bank. Ask a representative for more information.