What are the best free checking accounts with no minimum deposit?
The best free checking accounts with no deposit allow you to easily organize your money wherever you are.
This guide takes a look at the various services and features you can expect when opening an account with one of the leading banks and credit unions so that you can choose the right one for your needs.
Most of these financial institutions will require a good credit score, so make sure you’re aware of this before submitting your account application.
The Best Free Checking Accounts With No Minimum Deposit
We’ve explored the features, hidden costs, and interest rates of the leading banks in the U.S. to compile this overview of the best accounts available.
Here’s our list of the 10 best free checking accounts with no minimum deposit:
Best For Organizing Expenses
One is an easy-to-use account to help you organize your money, check your savings and carry out online banking through their mobile app.
You can use the platform to quickly arrange your expenses into categories known as Pockets and access your cash without any fees from 55,000 ATMs in their Allpoint network.
Interest rates through their Save Pocket feature are just 1% APY on up to $5,000 without a qualifying direct deposit, with a limit of $25,000 on a qualifying direct deposit.
One offers its members a range of customer service options, with phone lines and online chat calls open during regular office hours, email requests for assistance, and the opportunity to submit a request for assistance directly through their website.
They also include a decent selection of additional features, including an app that integrates checking accounts as well as your savings and credit line, linked to an unlimited number of free Save Pockets.
It’s also compatible with Cash App, and while integration with Zelle isn’t allowed, the Zelle app isn’t blocked.
You can pick up a 12% APR credit line along with overdraft protection, although these options are subject to approval.
Overall, One finance offers a solid range of account features to help you save money and perform digital banking duties, whether you’re saving for a pair of the most expensive sneakers or setting up a nest egg for retirement.
Best For Cash-back Credit Cards
Alliant offers its members a high-interest no-fee account with no minimum deposit to open an account, as well as no monthly fees for your online banking.
You can access your money through one of 80,000 free Alliance network ATMs, with an ATM fee reimbursement of up to $20 per month.
There’s a $25 overdraft fee, and when you sign up, you’ll have to opt into their paperless statements and have a recurring monthly electronic deposit to earn APY.
Alliant also features one of the highest monthly reimbursements available through an account, with potential annual savings from ATM fees of up to $240, with no requirements to benefit from this feature.
While Alliant is first and foremost an online bank, it also offers a cash-back credit card that features a 2.5% cash-back on all purchases, with up to $250 in rewards per billing cycle.
Since Alliant is a credit union, if you want to open an account, you’ll have to become a member, which you can do by supporting their partner charity, Foster Care to Success.
They also offer mobile direct deposits, contactless Visa debit card transactions, and $0 liability on fraudulent charges, as well as no overdraft fees.
Best For Payment App Compatibility
Varo is an online bank that offers an excellent selection of perks for those who set up a direct deposit, helping them budget their money, improve their credit rating and manage their finances.
You can set up an account without the need for a credit check, and there are no fees and no balance requirements to worry about.
Additionally, Varo comes with no overdraft fees, and you can withdraw your cash from one of 55,000 fee-free ATMs, including from Safeway, Target, and CVS (although a $2.50 fee does apply for out-of-network ATM withdrawals).
Varo also allows you to round transactions up to the nearest dollar, helping you build your savings, with automated transfers to your savings account also being available.
You can use the Varo mobile app to quickly transfer money, as well as make payments via PayPal, Cash App, Venmo, Apple Pay, and Google Pay.
Varo doesn’t have any brick-and-mortar banks you can visit, but if you don’t deal with cash often and want an online account that is easy to use, the lack of fees and foreign transaction fees makes it a solid choice.
It’s a versatile platform designed for everyday use and doesn’t feature restrictions on who can sign up, so you don’t need to have Kanye West’s net worth to become a member.
7. FNBO Direct
Best For ATM Access
FNBO Direct is an online account that offers free online banking with no monthly maintenance fees or hidden charges, with around-the-clock access to 2 million ATMs worldwide.
They also offer customers an online savings account, which comes with no monthly fees or monthly minimums, as well as 0.35% APY.
Opening an account requires a nominal $1 deposit to open, granting access to their standard online and mobile checking services.
Withdrawing money from any of their Allpoint ATMs is free, although there is a $1,000 limit per 24 hours, so if you plan on withdrawing large amounts, it might be the wrong account for you.
Interest on their accounts is 0.15% annual percentage yield, and you can receive account alerts as well as budgeting tools to keep on top of your finances via their app.
FNBO Direct doesn’t charge any fees for incoming wire transfers, although there is a $15 fee for outgoing domestic transfers.
Other fees you can expect to pay include a $10 next day fee for their Popmoney service and a $5 fee to check issuance.
Members receive a free Visa debit card to help with their daily purchases, which also comes with free debit card fraud monitoring for additional peace of mind, especially if you’re investing in one of the most expensive Lego sets.
Best For Range Of No Fee Services
E-Trade is another feature-rich online account that has one of the best banking applications, so you can easily manage your finances wherever you are.
An E-Trade checking account offers a range of no-fee services, including checkbook reorders, online wire transfers, and stopping payments, along with unlimited transactions.
You can make E-Trade debit card purchases anywhere you like, and there’s the option to transfer money between any of your accounts without any charges, although this can take up to three business days to complete.
There’s also the option to transfer a full account, for example, if you want to move all of your cash and securities assets from an outside financial institution across to your new E-Trade checking account.
No deposit is required to open a new checking account, and the service offers excellent access to fee-free ATMs, along with a selection of physical locations where you can deal with your finances face-to-face.
The only fee you need to consider when using E-Trade is the £25 fee for outgoing wire transfers made over the phone; otherwise, you can enjoy all their services without additional costs.
If poor financial management is one of the things holding you back from success, opening an account with E-Trade could be a great way to help you get on top of your money with minimal fuss.
5. Discover Bank
Best For Use With Zelle
Discover Bank offers customers a selection of account types to choose from, including a checking account, online savings account, and money market account, each with simple terms and various rewards.
Discover Bank’s no-fee checking account is simple to set up with basic information such as your address and social security number. You can either make a deposit during this process or come back and do this later.
It comes with an intuitive app, which allows you to access cash on the go and use their map for easy ATM access when you’re out and about.
There’s no ATM fee to worry about, and additionally, no fees on any of your accounts, as well as no requirements for a minimum balance.
Discover Bank offers customers 1% cash-back on up to $3,000 in debit card purchases for each month, and with 0.50% APY available through their online savings account, you can watch your money grow over time.
The accounts are also compatible with Zelle, making sending and receiving money through U.S.-based bank accounts even easier without being charged any additional fees.
There are several financial institutions with a reputation for unreliable online banking, but with Discover Bank, you can be confident their 24/7 customer support team will be there to help you out.
Best For Mobile Phone Use
Chime is one of the most influential free banking accounts for mobile phones, beginning life as a mobile-first platform to deliver financial services with little to no fees.
With no minimum balance, monthly maintenance fees, and no overdraft fee if you exceed your limit, Chime is a dependable service for those who want to manage their finances more effectively.
There are nearly 40,000 ATMs you can use for free, and there’s the option to receive your paycheck two days early, so if you’re running low on funds towards the end of the month, you can sort your payments with no fuss.
With the Chimes Savings Account, you can round debit card purchases up to the nearest dollar, helping to save additional money for a rainy day.
There’s an out-of-network ATM fee of $2.50, and overdrafts exceeding $100 don’t come with any overdraft protection.
As you might expect from an online checking account with an emphasis on mobile devices, Chime doesn’t offer a physical checkbook, and if you deposit cash at Green Dot locations, you might be charged a fee.
Inefficient management of your finances might be one of the harsh reasons you’re still broke, so signing up for a Chime account and taking advantage of their tools and services could help you get on the right track.
3. Capital One
Best For Account Security
Capital One is another well-established international bank with a wide selection of services available, including a free 360 checking account which you can use in conjunction with Zelle.
With no ATM fees available from 70,000 machines and no fees for out-of-network ATMs, it’s an excellent account for those who travel regularly and need access to their cash.
A paper statement fee of $5 does apply, and there’s also an overdraft fee of $35, which applies after a next-day grace period.
Outgoing domestic wire transfers come with a $30 fee, but you can receive incoming wire transfers for free and save the cash for one of the world’s most expensive motorbikes instead.
It’s also a secure account, with $0 fraud liability on debit cards, with the lock and unlock feature bringing an additional layer of security.
This is enhanced by real-time security alerts, which notify you of all your account activity, so you’ll know if someone has used your debit card without your authorization.
With no minimum balance requirements and 0.10% APY on all balances, it’s a good no-fee account for people looking to easily transfer money, avoid ATM fees, and gain peace of mind with overdraft protection.
With Capital One constantly updating its service with additional benefits, it’s an excellent way to future-proof your digital banking solutions to make the most out of its perks.
2. Axos Bank
Best For Refer A Friend Bonuses
Axos Bank has long since positioned itself as America’s most experienced digital bank, offering customers a feature-rich free checking account where you can make direct deposits and earn interest on your money.
The Axos Rewards account gives you 1.00% annual percentage yield interest, and you can save additional money using one of their 90,000 ATMs to make free withdrawals.
Since they specialize in digital banking, there are no brick and mortar banks, and a paper statement fee of $5 also applies.
Incoming wire transfers are free, but if you want to send wire transfers either domestically or internationally, there’s a fee of $35 and $45, respectively.
In addition, there are no fees, no minimum balance requirements, and no fees for overdraft or insufficient funds.
Getting an online no-fee checking account with Axos Bank does, however, expect you to have a good banking history before you’re approved.
If you want to access your funds early, you can take advantage of Axos Bank’s Direct Deposit Express, which allows you to get your money up to two days early.
There’s also a referral bonus that gives you cash when you invite friends to the platform, while integration with third-party peer-to-peer payment apps brings an extra level of versatility.
Axos Bank’s online services can help you to free up more of your day, allowing you to stay laser-focused on your goals and achieve financial success.
1. Ally Bank
Best For All Round Banking
Ally Bank has considerable pedigree when it comes to providing internet-based banking services, and their interest-bearing checking account is loaded with tools to help you manage your finances.
One of the largest financial institutions in the United States, they have a well-established reputation for excellent customer service through their minimal fee online checking account.
Setting up a new checking account has no minimum balance requirements or opening deposit, and there are no monthly fees you need to factor into your budget.
The only fees you need to know are outgoing wire transfers, which charge $20 and $7.50 for a returned deposit item.
You can also earn interest on your money, with 0.10% APY for accounts with a daily balance below $15,000, rising to 0.25% for those with a daily balance exceeding that amount.
This interest is compounded daily, and you can also take advantage of expedited paychecks, allowing you to get paid up to two days early, avoiding potential headaches when the monthly bills come around.
Other features you can take advantage of once you’ve opened an account include free checks, as well as controls on your debit card.
If you want to deposit checks from your mobile phone, you can do so through Zelle or use Ally Skill through Amazon Alexa.
If you’re looking for how to change your schedule for better productivity, creating an account could be the first step to streamlining your finances and saving valuable time and money.
Many banks offer direct deposit accounts that don’t require any funds to open, each with its advantages and disadvantages.
We’ve reviewed ten of the best, outlining what you need to open a qualifying direct deposit, the level of ATM access, and whether you can earn interest on your money.
Banks and credit unions often change their terms of service, so make sure you verify the latest information before applying for a new account.
Here’s a quick recap of the 10 best free checking accounts with no minimum deposit:
- Ally Bank
- Axos Bank
- Capital One
- Discover Bank
- FNBO Direct