Choosing the best banks for millennials is a real dilemma, for those who might feel that not all banks have successfully transitioned to the 21st century.
Choosing a bank is a big step, one that you should approach with caution. After all, a lousy banking experience can leave more than a sour taste.
In this review, we will be going through some of the best banks for millennials out there.
We will be looking at what each bank has to offer and the things you should be on the lookout for when choosing a bank to make your experience as smooth as possible.
12 Best Banks for Millennials in 2021
Here are the best banks for millennials you can open an account with today:
- 🏆 Chime
- CIT Bank
- One Finance
- Capital One
- Varo Bank
- Current Bank
- US Bank
- Discover Bank
While technically speaking, Chime is not a bank, its banking products and services are worthy of consideration.
They work with two large banks – The Bancorp Bank and Stride Bank, so your money is still FDIC-insured.
They offer three different accounts, including Spending Account, Savings Account, and Credit Builder.
All three accounts come with no monthly maintenance fees nor minimum balances. The lack of fees makes them ideal if you’re looking for a budget account as you build up your savings.
Here, the automatic savings feature can come in handy with round-ups automatically transferred to the savings account, where they’ll earn an APY interest rate of 0.50%
Chime supports both Apple Pay and Google Pay, making it that much easier to manage your money. You also get fee-free withdrawals from over 60,000 ATMs, including ATMs at Target, Walgreens, 7-Eleven, etc.
You can get your paycheck as much as two days earlier. At the same time, Eligible customers who qualify for SpotMe also get fee-free overdrafts – particularly useful if you find yourself with your back against the wall.
Chime has been in the news recently, with some customers complaining their accounts were being closed. The issue has blown over since – and there’s even an IPO on the cards for this fintech unicorn!
|Chime Spending Account||$290||October 31, 2021||
|Chime Spending Account||$250||October 31, 2021||
|Chime Spending Account||$50||December 31, 2021||
Aspiration is a financial company on a mission to save the planet along with its customers. Technically speaking, Aspiration is a broker-dealer.
However, it works with ten banks, so you’re FDIC-insured up to $2.5 million – enough to cover the most aspirational of savers.
They have quite a few accounts so that we will go through them one-by-one.
Their primary account is called Spend & Save, which comes in 2 plans called Aspiration and Aspiration Plus.
Aspiration follows the Pay What is Fair model, so you get to decide how much you pay each month, even if you choose not to pay anything at all.
On the other hand, Aspiration Plus will set you back $5.99 per month, billed on an annual basis.
Regardless of the account you choose, you can rest easy knowing that Aspiration will not use your money to fund the fossil fuel industry.
You also get cashback on your Conscience Coalition purchases and a personal impact score to help make more environmentally-friendly purchases.
Aspiration also offers an Investment and a Retirement account,m both of which you can open with as little as $10.00.
Just like the accounts we discussed previously, both Investing and Retirement accounts follow an environmentally friendly ethos.
Aspiration is also working on a zero carbon footprint credit card that offers up to 1% cashback on carbon zero months and tree planting with every purchase. The waiting list is already open and can be accessed directly from their website.
3. CIT Bank
CIT Bank is an online bank that works more like a traditional bank.
Savings, Checking, and Money Market Accounts have a minimum open deposit requirement of $100, with the maximum APY reaching 0.50%.
However, you’ll need to meet the qualifying criteria that change from one account to the next.
The bank also offers CDs with different term lengths; however, the maximum APY you can earn is also capped at 0.50%.
The e-Checking account comes with several features, including $30 in ATM fees reimbursements per month, Zelle for easy money transfers, and most importantly, no monthly fees.
You’ll also earn an APY that ranges between 0.10% and 0.25% depending on your balance.
The savings account also comes without a monthly fee. The Savings Builder is specifically designed to help you reach savings goals such as buying a house or saving up for your kid’s college tuition.
Chase is one of the biggest banks in the US and forms part of what is known as the Big Four. They have a long, rich history that goes as far back as 1799, making them over 220.
Over this time, they have managed to build a solid portfolio of products and services.
At the moment, Chase is offering new customers a welcome bonus of up to $225.
Still, you do get the added convenience of visiting a branch – something online banks do not offer.
While they are not an online bank, their mobile app is one of the best out there, boasting features such as My Chase Plan, allowing you to break repayments over time.
Other features include Chase Credit Journey, with free credit scores, budgeting, and rewards.
Ally Bank is another online financial institution with a strong portfolio of products and services.
It has managed to work out how to be an online bank down to a T. Ally offers not only traditional banking products and services but some innovative ones as well, including investing options.
Their savings account has no monthly service fees or balance requirements. It includes several features like Round-Ups, Surprise Savings, and an APY of 0.50% applicable on all tiers.
On the other hand, their checking account offers an APY of 0.25% and eCheck Deposit, Zelle, and fee-free withdrawals from over 43,000 Allpoint ATMs.
The highest interest rate on offer at this bank is 0.80%, which is available on a 5-year term CD.
Are you looking to grow your savings? Then you might want to look at their investment options, including managed portfolios, self-directed trading, and forex trading.
There’s a whole list of investment options available, including stocks, ETFs (Exchange-Traded Funds), options, and many others. There are no advisory fees, and you can start your investment journey with as little as $100
Ally also offers mortgages, auto loans, and personal loans, making it a bank with which you can build a long-term relationship.
They’re also SEC-registered, an Equal Housing Lender, and a member of FINRA and SIPC.
6. One Finance
One Finance is a financial app with more than a few tricks up its sleeve that has several ethical considerations at its heart.
Their banking products and services are offered through Coastal Community Bank, which the FDIC covers. As such, each depositor is insured up to $250,000.
The account has no monthly fees and no minimum balance requirements, making it ideal for new savers.
Account-holders get fee-free overdraft protection, which is always nice considering how expensive overdrafts can get.
You also get continuous access to your free credit score, which can help you make smarter choices if you’re having issues in this department.
Deposits earn an APY that’s between 1% and 3%, which rate is significantly higher than what most of the competition is offering, more so when you consider that this is a free account after all.
You might also want to know that the bank will not use your deposits to support oil, gas, coal, firearms, tobacco, palm oil, or private prisons.
Direct deposits will make their way into your account up to 2 days earlier. They can even help you get a credit line with payments spread over time at an APR of 12%.
7. Capital One
Capital One is one of the more traditional banks on this list. However, this doesn’t mean that you get to miss out.
At the moment, they have started to reopen their branches and cafes, so if you’re one for face-to-face customer service, this is a valuable feature to have.
Their Capital One 360 Performance Savings offers an APY of 0.40% and has no fees or minimum balance requirements.
The 360 Checking account, on the other hand, does not earn interest but equally carries no monthly fees or minimum balance requirements.
If you’re looking at setting some money aside, you might want to check out their CDs with the 60-month CD carrying an APY of 0.80%.
Capital One also offers a variety of credit cards and auto loans.
The bank even has a convenient auto navigator to help you find your next car and get pre-qualified. The entire process is available online through their website.
Are you looking to take your financial skills to the next level? They also have a Learn and Grow portal to learn about different aspects of personal finance management.
8. Varo Bank
Varo Bank is an online bank that promises its customers no fees. There is no credit check required to open the account, making it ideal for those who have been refused a bank account elsewhere.
The account has no monthly fees and no minimum balance requirements. Furthermore, there are no overdraft fees and fee-free withdrawals from all 55,000+ Allpoint ATMs.
Other features include early direct deposits, a contactless debit card, and cash deposits at Green Dot locations – something that not a lot of online banks have. You can also get an advance of up to $100, with the maximum fee being $5.00.
You can also open a savings account with an APY that starts at 0.20%.
The good news here is that the rate will go up to 3.00% if you meet three preset requirements, making the account a rather lucrative proposition.
One other account that those looking to build up their credit score might appreciate is Varo Believe. This account has no security deposit required, and all payments are reported to the three major credit bureaus.
To qualify, you need to have at least two direct deposits over the past three months worth $100 or more and no negative balances within the past 90 days, among other criteria.
9. Current Bank
Current is not a bank but works with both Choice Financial Group and Metropolitan Commercial Bank to provide its customers with certain banking products and services.
There are two accounts to choose from – Basic, free, and Premium, which costs $4.99 a month. The premium account fee is fixed and cannot be waived.
Both accounts have several outstanding features such as instant notification, no overdrafts fees, and savings insights.
The premium account adds early access to direct deposits and immediate refunds on gas station authorizations, among others.
Other features include cashback, mobile check deposits, fee-free overdrafts, and free withdrawals from Allpoint ATMs.
They also offer an account for teens that comes with no minimum balance requirements, no transfer fees, and no hidden fees.
There is a yearly fee of $36, and a parent or legal guardian must sign-up and link their bank account.
Current works with a lot of influencers, so there is a cool factor going on. While this might not mean better banking services, it does add to the appeal of this account.
10. US Bank
US Bank is one of the largest banks in the US (fifth largest to be precise) and has been operating since 1968.
They have branches in more than 25 states and have been voted as one of the world’s most ethical companies in 2021.
The bank offers all of the products and services you want, including bank accounts, credit cards, loans, and investments accounts.
As such, you can have a one-stop-shop for all your banking and financial needs without having to look elsewhere.
US Bank has one of the most extensive networks of ATMs in the country, and customers can also enjoy surcharge-free withdrawals from MoneyPass ATMs.
One area where the bank does struggle is when it comes to interest rates, which can be much lower than what the competition has to offer.
Other than that, it is a strong bank that you can grow your finances with over many, many years.
Oxygen is a financial app aimed at rebels, creatives, makers, and entrepreneurs looking for something different from the garden-variety banking apps.
Oxygen is not a bank, with the actual banking services provided by The Bancorp Bank.
There are four account tiers to choose from, named after the core elements of Earth, Water, Air, and Free. Earth is free, with the rest costing between $19.99 and $199.99 per year.
While paying the fee is a must for the first year, you can have the fee waived for subsequent years by meeting the qualification criteria.
The more premium the account, the steeper the qualifications; however you also get added benefits and perks.
All Savings accounts earn an APY (Annual Percentage Yield) that varies between 0.25% and 1.25% and cashback that ranges between 2% and 6% – depending on the account tier.
Other standard features include fee-free withdrawals from over 40,000 Allpoint ATMs, Bill Pay, extended warranty protection, early direct deposits, and many others.
Oxygen also won the Best Overall Fintech App award in 2021 and is PCI DSS certified.
12. Discover Bank
Discover national bank also offers some excellent accounts, including a fee-free online savings account with an APY of 0.40%.
Their checking account comes with no monthly fees and a 1% cash back on debit card purchases.
They also offer CDs (Certificates of Deposit) with APYs that go as high as 0.60% for terms of 5 years or more.
With Discover, your money is insured by FDIC. That means your money is as safe here as with any of the other major banks in the States.
They also have a handy financial literacy center to help you understand personal finance subjects a little deeper while developing good money habits.
Best Banks for Millennials: What To Look Out For
Picking one of the best banks for millennials that’s the best for everyone is a difficult task.
Millennials, especially, have an extensive range of interests and opportunities. These require different kinds of bank accounts, features, and support.
As such, you first need to understand what your goals and aspirations are and how the bank can help you do just that.
There are several features and perks that you might want to consider when choosing a bank.
Think of this as a general list that can help you make sure you select an excellent bank account.
No or low fees can help you make sure you get the most out of your money. From no monthly maintenance fees to free ATMs withdrawals or ATM fees reimbursements, your money can go further when you do not have to pay any fees.
FDIC-insured banks offer an extra measure of security. Should something happen to the financial institution, you are guaranteed your money by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
Bank Offers and Perks
Bank offers are often available to new customers only as they help banks grow their customer base, and they’re worth looking out for in your search.
On the other hand, perks such as cashback rewards reward you for being a customer while growing your account.
If you’re looking to save money, high-interest rates such as those offered on high-yield savings accounts can be a game-changer.
Interest rates help you grow your money while it’s sitting in your account, essentially having the bank pay you for keeping your money with them.
Online Banking and Mobile Banking
Online and mobile banking can help you get more done without having to visit a branch.
A solid mobile app should offer handy features such as the ability to check the account balance on your deposit accounts, budgeting, and transfer funds.
Best Banks for Millennials FAQs
What is the best bank for Millennials?
The best banks for millennials is going to be the one that best serves personal needs.
For example, a millennial small business owner will have different financial needs and requirements than a millennial working on their Ph.D. with a growing student loan.
The important thing here is to focus on what you need then use our list of best banks for millennials to find the best bank for you.
Who do Millennials bank with?
As our review has shown, millennials bank with all sorts of banks. The main decision driver will always be very personal; after all, a bank is there to help you grow your finances.
What banks do millionaires use?
Generally speaking, millionaires tend to use private banks, which offer products and services tailored to the rich such as investment accounts, brokerage accounts, and other financial services.
Many big banks tend to have a private banking arm. In contrast, several other banks are fully dedicated to servicing high net worth individuals such as millionaires.
Is there a bank better than Chime?
Though a popular question I get asked, this is not an easy question because everyone has different financial needs.
As such, Chime will never be the best bank for everyone, but it can be the best bank for many people!
Chime offers customers a great selection of accounts with little to no fees and a great mobile app that’s worth checking out – some of the reasons why it gets a good rep.
Read our Chime bank review to learn more about what this bank offers millennials and all of their other customers.
If Chime isn’t for you for some reason, then we’ve listed many of the best banks for millennials.
You’re bound to find a bank that delivers the products, services, and features you’re after – so do read the individual reviews that we have on each bank.
You’ll find a lot more detail in those to help you find the bank (or credit union) that’s ultimately the best for you.