U.S. Bank Review

U.S. Bank

Overall Rating

9

Bottom Line

With U.S. Bank you can find all of your standard banking services. If you're located in the West or Midwest, you shouldn't have any trouble locating a branch or ATM, and you can enjoy all of the convenience of a big bank.

Pros

  • Tons of locations in the West and Midwest
  • Big, secure, national bank
  • Wide variety of products and services

Cons

  • No presence in the East
  • Numerous fees

U.S. Bank is the consumer banking division of U.S. Bancorp, which is the fifth-largest banking institution in the United States.

The bank traces its history back to 1863 when it was first opened as the First National Bank of Cincinnati.

Following a series of mergers and acquisitions in the early 2000s, U.S. Bank officially established its headquarters in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and now operates over 3,000 physical branches across the Midwest and Western U.S.

Keep reading to learn how U.S. Bank’s products and services can meet your financial needs.

In This Article

U.S. Bank Checking Accounts

U.S. Bank offers five different checking account options.

Safe Debit Account

Safe Debit is a checkless checking account, basic checking account that offers all of your basic checking needs, including a debit card, online banking, and online bill pay.

There are no physical checks available with this account, so all transactions occur digitally or with your debit card.

What makes the account “safe” is that there are no overdraft fees.

Instead of being able to overdraft your account, your card will simply decide if you try to make a purchase that you cannot afford.

If, in the unlikely event that you overdraft your account balance due to a restaurant tip or other unexpected charge, you will have to settle that up to continue using your account.

Safe Debit comes with a monthly maintenance fee of $4.95. Unfortunately, there’s no way to get around the fee.

Easy Checking

Easy Checking is U.S. Bank’s most popular option and comes with a debit card, online banking, mobile check deposits, and an option to link your U.S. Bank savings account for overdraft protection.

The account has a $6.95 monthly fee, but you won’t have to pay it if you meet any of these three requirements:

  1. Combined monthly direct deposits totaling $1,000 or more
  2. Average monthly balance of at least $1,500
  3. Account holder is 65 years or older

There’s also a $2 fee for paper statements, which you’ll get waived if you’re 65 or older, or if you enroll in e-statements.

Student Checking

Student Checking is a free checking account for students. To qualify, the account holder needs to be enrolled in high school, college, or a trade school.

Student Checking comes with added flexibility for younger folks, including no monthly fees, discounted checks, and fee-free non-U.S. Bank ATM withdrawals (up to four times per month).

The same $2 fee applies for paper statements, so be sure to enroll in e-statements to avoid it.

Gold Checking

Gold Checking is a relationship-based option that saves you 0.25% on a U.S. Bank mortgage and hooks you up with free trading in your investment accounts.

This account is a good option if you’re planning to take advantage of a loan or credit line with U.S. Bank.

There is a monthly fee of $14.95, but it gets waived if you have a personal loan, credit line, mortgage, or credit card with the bank.

You’ll also get up to two free non-U.S. Bank ATM transactions per month, and 100 free trades per year with your U.S. Bancorp Investment account.

Platinum Checking

Platinum Checking is U.S. Bank’s top-tier checking account. Platinum Checking pays an 0.01% APY on deposits and is the only interest-bearing checking account that U.S. Bank offers.

This account has all the same benefits as Gold Checking, plus a little extra.

There are no non-U.S. Bank ATM fees whatsoever, and you also get access to a safe deposit box at half price.

Platinum Checking has a $24.95 monthly fee, but it’ll be waived if you can meet either of these two requirements:

  1. $25,000 in combined S. Bank balances (including U.S. Bancorp Investments)
  2. You have an existing relationship with S. Bank Wealth Management

U.S. Bank Savings Accounts

U.S. Bank offers five different savings accounts, each of which can link to a checking account and be used for overdraft protection (with the exception of Safe Debit).

Note: The APYs may vary depending on your location, so be sure to reference the U.S. Bank website for rates specific to your area.

Standard Savings

Standard Savings is a basic, entry-level savings account for account balances of any size.

With this account, you’ll have online banking, automatic transfer options, and custom account alerts. You’ll also earn interest on your deposits, but the APY currently sits at just 0.01%.

Standard Savings has a small monthly service fee of $4 per month, and you can avoid it in a few ways:

  1. Maintain a $300 minimum daily balance
  2. Maintain a $1,000 average monthly balance
  3. The account holder is 18 years old or younger

Package Money Market Savings

To get a Package Money Market Savings account, you first need to enroll in Gold Checking.

The account has no monthly fee and offers the same benefits as Standard Savings, but with a marginally better interest rate if you have a higher balance.

Here’s a look at the current APYs:

  • Account Balance: $1-$500,000+ | APY: 01%

Platinum Select Money Market Savings

Platinum Select is an exclusive money market account that you can only get if you have a Platinum Checking account.

There is no maintenance fee, and a $25 minimum opening deposit.

The interest tiers and rates are the same as the Package Money Market Savings account, as follows:

  • Account Balance: $1-$500,000+ | APY: 01%

Elite Money Market Account

Elite Money Market is similar to Package and Platinum Select, but you won’t need a specific checking account to apply for it.

Elite Money Market comes with a $10 monthly fee, which you can avoid by maintaining a minimum daily balance of $10,000.

There’s also a $100 minimum opening deposit. The interest rates are the same Package, Platinum Select, and Elite, as follows:

  • Account Balance: $1-$500,000+ | APY: 01%

Retirement Money Market

Retirement Money Market is a personal savings account for customers who have an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) with U.S. Bank.

The account has no monthly maintenance fee and requires a $25 automatic monthly deposit or a $100 initial opening deposit.

You won’t be able to apply for this account online, so stop by your local bank branch if you’re interested in opening one up.

  • Account Balance: $1-$500,000+ | APY: 01%

U.S. Bank CDs (Certificates of Deposit)

U.S Bank has a few options when it comes to CD accounts.

Each CD account earns interest on deposits. As with most CD accounts, how much interest you earn depends on how long of a term you select.

Here is an overview of the current US Bank CD APYs and terms:

Certificate of Deposit (CD)

U.S. Bank’s entry-level CD comes with a term length from 1 to 60 months. The APY increases the longer you commit your funds, regardless of your account balance.

Here’s the current breakdown of the CD APY tiers:

  • 1-24 month CD term | 0.05% APY
  • 36-month CD term | 0.10% APY
  • 48-month CD term | 0.15% APY
  • 60-month CD term | 0.25% APY

You’ll need at least $500 to open this CD account (all the other options require $1,000).

CD Special

A CD Special account gives you access to a more attractive APY. You’ll need an initial deposit of at least $1,000.

Here’s the current CD Special term and rate:

  • 47-month CD term | 0.40% APY

This is one of the highest APYs that you can expect to find with any U.S. Bank account, so if you can afford to set your money aside for a while, a CD Special can net you the most in interest earnings.

Step Up CD

A Step Up CD comes with a fixed interest rate that increases every seven months of the account’s term.

To achieve the highest APY, you have to agree to a 28-month term, so you’ll be in line for 3 rate increases before the account matures.

Here’s the current breakdown of the Step Up CD terms and APY progression:

  • Months 1-7 | 0.05% APY
  • Months 8-14 | 0.25% APY
  • Months 15-21 | 0.45% APY
  • Months 22-28 | 0.65% APY

Some quick calculations reveal that this all works out to an average APY of 0.35% for the entire term.

At the moment, a Step Up CD offers a higher APY than the comparable term lengths with a standard or Special CD.

Trade Up CD

A Trade Up CD comes with the option to bump up to a higher APY once during your term if the Federal Reserve increases rates during your term.

Typically, interest rates on CD accounts are locked, so whatever rate you agree to at the start of your term is what you get.

Therefore, the ability to “trade up” to a higher APY with a Trade Up CD is a pretty nice benefit.

There are only two term options for a Trade Up CD, as follows:

  • 30 month CD term | 0.10% APY
  • 60 month CD term | 0.40% APY

U.S. Bank Credit Cards

U.S. Bank offers at least 20 different credit cards, with a variety of rewards options to choose from.

Here is a high-level overview of U.S. Bank’s most popular credit cards.

U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Signature: Best for Cash Back

Cash+ Visa Signature is U.S. Bank’s top cash back credit card. You can earn 5% cash back on the first $2,000 in purchases in two categories of your choice, and 2% back on one “everyday” category (e.g., gas, groceries, or restaurants). All other purchases earn 1% cash back.

There is no annual fee, and a $200 bonus if you apply online and spend at least $500 in the first 90 days of opening your account.

Pro Tip: If you sign up for this card, be strategic about your spending categories. The best benefit is 5% cash back on up to $2,000 in purchases, so make sure to identify the areas where you spend the most to max that out.

U.S. Bank Altitude Go Visa Signature: Best for General Rewards

Altitude Go has one of U.S. Bank’s best introductory offers, with a 25,000 point bonus (with $250) if you spend $1,000 in the first 90 days.

The standard points earning options are pretty good too. This card comes with 4x points on dining, 2x points on groceries, gas, and streaming services, and 1x points on everything else.

Altitude Go has no annual fee, an intro APR of 0% for 12 months, and a $15 annual credit for streaming services, such as Spotify or Netflix.

U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express: Best for Travel

FlexPerks Gold is a travel rewards card that earns 5x points on travel purchases, 3x points at restaurants, 2x at gas stations, and 1x points on everything else.

FlexPerks Gold also comes with some nice travel perks, such as reimbursement for TSA Precheck, and complimentary access to Boingo Wi-Fi hotspots.

New cardholders can earn a 30,000 FlexPoints bonus if you spend $2,000 on eligible purchases in the first four months. (30,000 points is worth about $450 in travel redemption).

FlexPerks Gold has an $85 annual fee.

U.S. Bank Visa Platinum: Best for Balance Transfer

U.S. Bank Visa Platinum is a general-use credit card that has no annual fee.

The best perk with this card is that it comes with 20 interest-free months on balance transfers — making it the bank’s best option for paying down high-interest credit card balances.

Pro Tip: If you sign up for this card and want to take advantage of the 0% APR on balance transfers, make sure to transfer your balance over in the first 60 days of account opening.

U.S. Bank Secured Visa: Best for Building Your Credit Score

U.S. Bank Secured Visa is for people who have no credit history, or who are trying to rebuild their credit score.

As a secured credit card, you have to fund the account to use it. There are no points up for grabs and no signup bonus.

But, with no annual fee, and fewer risks than a traditional credit card, Secured Visa is a great option for those that might not qualify for other cards.

Other Credit Cards

U.S. Bank has a number of credit card partnerships with grocery stores and retailers, such as Ralphs, Kroger, and REI.

If you’re interested in taking a look at the full credit card lineup, you can do so here.

U.S. Bank Features

Here are some of the top features that stand out about U.S. Bank:

  • 3,100 Branches In 25 States: U.S. Bank’s physical locations are primarily located in the West and Midwest, where it is one of the most accessible national banks. With the exception of Florida, you won’t have access to a U.S. Bank branch if you live east of Ohio.
  • 4,800 ATMs: U.S. Bank’s ATMs follow the same trend as the bank’s physical branches — there are a ton of them in total, but only within the same regions that the bank’s branches operate in.
  • Online Banking: As a U.S. Bank customer, you can expect the robust online banking experience that you normally would with a bigger bank. You’ll have access to all of your accounts, online bill pay, and easy transfers and payments with Zelle — all without having to visit a bank in person.
  • Mobile App: U.S. Bank’s mobile app makes it easy to manage your bank account on the go. The app currently holds strong ratings of 4.8 stars (out of 5) in the App Store, and 4.6 stars (out of 5) in the Google Play Store.

U.S. Bank Fees

Big banks typically charge fees, and U.S. Bank is no different. Here’s the rundown of common fees you can expect to see as a U.S. Bank customer:

Monthly Maintenance Fees

There’s a built-in monthly maintenance fee with most U.S. Bank deposit accounts. The good news is you can avoid this fee with all of them except for Safe Debit Checking.

Just make sure you understand and can meet the waiver requirements when you open up your account.

Here is a breakdown of U.S. Bank’s monthly maintenance fees:

U.S. Bank Account Type Monthly Maintenance Fee Avoidable?
Safe Debit Account $4.95 No
Easy Checking $6.95 Yes
Student Checking $0.00 n/a
Gold Checking $14.95 Yes
Platinum Checking $24.95 Yes
Standard Savings $4.00 Yes

Overdraft Fees

If you overdraft your account by $5 or more, U.S. Bank charges $36 per transaction, up to four times per day.

Overdraft protection is available with a linked savings account or line of credit, but keep in mind that there’s a $12.50 fee if you opt for credit to cover your negative balance.

ATM Fees

ATM withdrawals are free at all U.S. Bank locations, and there’s a $2.50 fee for using non-U.S. Bank ATMs.

If you’re traveling abroad and need some cash, you could be looking at a 3% fee on the amount you withdraw.

Other Common Fees

  • Wire Transfer Fees: $20 for incoming wire transfers | $30 for outgoing wire transfers
  • Paper Statement Fee: $2 (unless your account covers it)
  • Stop Payment Fee: $35 (reduced to $25 with Platinum Checking)

Signing Up and Getting Started

Signing up for checking accounts, credit cards, auto loans, and home equity lines is easy to do online.

Once you pick the account that you want to sign for, click the red Open an Account button, and follow the signup instructions.

You can also sign up for an account over the phone or at your local branch. Once you’re enrolled, you’ll have instant access to online banking and other financial services.

U.S. Bank Promotions

Here are the current promotions that U.S. Bank is offering:

BankAmountExpiresRequirements 
U.S. Bank LogoU.S. Bank Gold Business Checking $750 October 29, 2021
U.S. Bank LogoU.S. Bank Cash+® Visa Signature® Card $200 N/A
  • Card Spend
U.S. Bank LogoU.S. Bank Altitude® Go Visa Signature® Card 20,000 Points N/A
  • Card Spend
see all bonuses

Security

U.S. Bank has a strong, secure online banking platform, so you don’t have to worry about the security of your funds or personal information.

Here some other security features that U.S. Bank offers:

  • FDIC-insured: Any deposits you make will be protected by the FDIC, up to $250,000.
  • Fraud Prevention: 24/7 fraud monitoring, automatic account logout, and industry-leading encryption technology.
  • Mobile Security: No personal or financial information is stored on your phone, and all wireless communications are also encrypted.
  • Free Security Alerts: If you enroll, S. Bank will give you a heads up if any shady activity occurs in your account.

U.S. Bank Customer Service

With a large bank like U.S. Bank, it’s important to remember that you might not always get the level of service that you expect.

On the one hand, U.S. Bank has a ton of resources to employ many customer support agents.

U.S. Bank customer service lines are open 24/7, and you can shoot them an email if the issue isn’t pressing. You can also pop into your local branch if you prefer to speak with someone in person.

On the other hand, there are a bunch of negative reviews online, as reflected by U.S. Bank’s TrustPilot rating of 1.5 stars (out of 5). The bank fares even worse on the Better Business Bureau website, with a 1.09-star rating (out of 5). Ouch!

Pros & Cons

Pros:

  • Tons of locations in the West and Midwest
  • Big, secure, national bank
  • Wide variety of products and services

Cons:

  • Some of the lowest interest rates in the industry
  • No presence in the East
  • Fees, so many fees

Alternatives to U.S. Bank

The most popular alternatives of U.S. Bank include the Big Four U.S. banks:

  1. Bank of America
  2. Chase Bank
  3. Wells Fargo
  4. Citibank

All of these banks offer similar products and services and have a wide national presence.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is U.S. bank a good bank to bank with?

Yes. U.S. Bank is a good bank to bank with, where you can find all of your standard banking services. If you’re located in the West or Midwest, you shouldn’t have any trouble locating a branch or ATM, and you can enjoy all of the convenience of a big bank.

If you live on the East Coast, however, and want access to brick and mortar locations and in-network ATMs, you might be out of luck.

Is U.S. Bank better than Bank of America?

U.S. Bank and Bank of America (BoA) are similar in a lot of ways and are pretty much equal when it comes to products, services, and customer support. Both are huge national banks with lots of locations and account options. Both can give you access to plenty of financial products and have large support networks in place when you need help.

Similarly, both banks offer low-interest rates and tend to charge a bunch of fees.

Which bank is better mostly depends on your personal preference and location. If you are located on the East Coast, BoA is your only option, whereas if you live in the Midwest or West Coast, you’ll get to choose between the two.

Who is U.S. Bank owned by?

U.S. Bank is owned by its parent company, U.S. Bancorp, which is located in Minneapolis.

Is U.S. Bank Right For You?

The bottom line is that if you don’t live in a Western or Midwestern state, you won’t get much use from U.S. Bank.

But if you do live in those areas, you can’t go wrong by opening up an account.

U.S. Bank offers plenty of branches and ATMs, an all-in-one banking platform, and the convenience of a large bank. At the same time, the bank charges lots of fees and doesn’t offer the best interest rates.

So, if those things are important to you, you might want to look into one of the best online banks or top high-yield savings accounts.

Now that you know what to expect with U.S. Bank, it’s all up to you. Good luck!