We have already written about the best high-interest savings account (HISA) in Canada to save your money in. But chances you need a chequing account to pair with that savings account. After all, our top pick for best HISA in Canada doesn't include a debit card - what if you need to get cash from an ATM?
Best Chequing Accounts for Most Canadians
For most Canadians, we recommend a chequing account through one of the leading online banks. They feature no-fee, no-minimum balance accounts that should be fine for most Canadians. Additionally, they pay interest on your chequing account balance, which a rare perk.
Tangerine No-Fee Daily Chequing Account
|Tangerine No-Fee Daily Chequing Account||- ABM Access at Scotiabank ABMs- Unlimited Interac e-Transfers®- No Monthly Fees- Up to 0.15% Interest Rate|
Tangerine was one of the first major online banks in Canada and is still an industry leader. They are a subsidiary of Scotiabank, and also provide many other services including a credit card that is one of our top picks for the best no annual fee credit card. Any Scotiabank ATM can be used to withdraw or deposit funds for free. The Tangerine No-Fee Daily Chequing Account features no monthly fees, no account minimum and unlimited transactions (including Interac e-Transfer®). The annual interest rate on this account ranges from 0.05-0.15%.
Simplii Financial No Fee Chequing Account
|Simplii Financial No Fee Chequing Account||- ABM Access at CIBC ABMs- Unlimited Interac e-Transfers®- No Monthly Fees- Up to 0.15% Interest Rate|
Similar to Tangerine, Simplii Financial is another major online bank. It is a subsidiary of CIBC and also features one of our favourite no annual fee credit cards. Any CIBC ATM can be used to withdraw or deposit funds with no fees. The Simplii Financial No Fee Chequing Account also has no monthly fees, no account minimum and unlimited transactions (including Interac e-Transfers®). The annual interest rate on this account also ranges from 0.05-0.15%.
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Best Chequing Account With a Major Bank
Sometimes you need quick access to services that are easiest to get from a bank teller. Whether you perform a lot of wire transfers or need a safety deposit box, sometimes you need your chequing account to be with one of the large banks in Canada. Here are our choices for the best chequing accounts from major banks:
Best Canadian ATM Access - TD Unlimited Chequing Account
|TD Unlimited Chequing Account||- No ATM Fees In Canada- Annual Fee Waiver on Credit Cards Worth $120 - No Monthly Fees with $4,000 Minimum Balance|
The TD Unlimited Chequing Account not only provides unlimited transactions, but it also does not charge a TD ATM fee at any ATM in Canada (although the ATM operator may charge a fee). Additionally, international ATMs are affordable to use with only a $3.00 fee in U.S. and Mexico (and $5.00 fee elsewhere). If you upgrade to the TD All-Inclusive Banking Plan you can even get no TD ATM fees worldwide. Additionally, you get a first-year annual fee waiver on a select number of TD credit cards (up to $120 value). The account does come with a $16.95 monthly fee, but this can be waived by keeping a minimum balance of $4,000. We estimate that if you keep this account minimum balance rather than keeping it in a high-interest savings account, you technically lose out on about $80 worth of interest annually. Therefore, we estimate the real cost of this chequing account to be about $6.70 a month.
Best Premium Banking Package - Scotiabank Preferred Package
|Scotiabank Preferred Package||- No ATM Fees Worldwide- Annual Fee Waiver on Credit Cards Worth $139/Year Free Small Safety Deposit Box- No Monthly Fees with $5,000 Minimum Balance|
If you like to stick with the same bank for all your financial needs - including savings, credit cards, investing and even a safety deposit box, you can't beat the Scotiabank Ultimate Package. It features a free small safety deposit box ($55 annual value), 5 free Scotia iTrade equity trades a year (about a $50 annual value), a better savings interest rate, an annual credit card fee waiver (up to a $139 value) along with unlimited free worldwide ATM withdrawals. This all comes at a monthly cost of $30.95, or it's free with a minimum balance of $5,000. We estimate that if you keep this account minimum balance rather than keeping it in a high-interest savings account, you technically lose out on about $100 worth of interest annually. Therefore, we estimate the real cost of this chequing account to be about $8.33 a month. A pretty good deal considering the huge array of perks you receive. It's also worthwhile to consider the Scotiabank Preferred Package if you don't need as many perks with your chequing account.
Best Basic Account - RBC Day to Day Banking
|RBC Day to Day Banking||- 12 Free Transaction a Month- Unlimited Interac e-Transfers® - Monthly Fee of $4|
If you just need a basic account (you just perform a few transactions with your chequing account) and aren't looking for any special bonuses (like an annual fee waiver on credit cards) most of the major banks in Canada offer similar accounts. Generally, you should expect to pay abou $48 a year in monthly fees (basic accounts generally don't feature a fee waiver). However, the RBC Day to Day Banking account is an exception to this, as if you hold an active investment (greater than $500) and an active RBC credit card (one transaction in the last 90 days) the fee is waived, saving you $48 a year. This account features 12 monthly transactions and unlimited Interac e-Transfers®.
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Best Chequing Account With a High Interest Rate - Motusbank No-Fee Chequing Account
|Motusbank No-Fee Chequing Account||- ABM Access at EXCHANGE Network ATMs- Unlimited Interac e-Transfers®- No Monthly Fees- 0.25% Interest Rate|
Chequing accounts are not for storing money in, and if you care about interest rates you can get much higher annual interest rates from our best high-interest savings accounts (HISA) in Canada. However, if you do care about earning some interest in your chequing account, and don't want to pay fees, we recommend the Motusbank No-Fee Chequing Account. It features a 0.25% annual interest rate, unlimited transactions (including Interac e-Transfers®), free ATM withdrawals at any EXCHANGE Network ATM, and no monthly fees or account minimums.