Christian Wiediger on Unsplash

Top Neobanks and Online Banks (Worldwide Lists)

Everything You Need to Know About Neobanks + Neobank Comparisons

Traditional banking is all too often filled with nontransparent fees, long waits at your local branch, and overly complex finance talk. Even the most basic financial services, such as bank transfers and direct deposits, work on slow legacy systems.

However, the neobank industry has grown rapidly to disrupt and compete with traditional high-street bank services.

With Monito, you can take advantage of the best neobank comparisons and recommendations to find the best-rated, cheapest, most user-friendly, and most secure choice.

In this neobank guide, you'll learn exactly what they are, how they work, whether they are worth it, how they compare, and how you can transition away from big banks.

What Is a Neobank?

In this guide, we do a dive into neobanks, their digital apps on your desktop or smartphone device, and how to take advantage over their services and low fees.

We cover our in-depth neobank comparisons, digital business banks, if premium membership is worth it, foreign currency accounts, as well as regional industries, such as neobanks in the United States. Read on to learn about this new cohort of bank and bank-like financial services that are competing with traditional high street banking: —

How Safe Are Online Banks?

All legit neobanks will be registered and regulated by the competent financial regulation authorities of their home country so be sure to check where it is headquartered and under which legal jurisdiction it operates.

For example, as a company founded in London, Revolut is regulated by the UK's FCA. Similarly, as an American company, Chime's accounts are insured by the FDIC.

It's also important to note that many neobanks are not licensed banks, and instead are fintech platforms that offer digital banking services. These kinds of neobanks partner with banks, so make certain that their partner banks are insured with government deposit protection (such as the FSCS in the UK and the FDIC in the US).

If a neobank company does not have evidence of registration with the competent finance authorities, then take serious caution.

Best Rated Global Neobanks

In this category, we list powerful neobanks that offer their financial services in several regions around the world. To learn more, click on the product's unique Monito score to read our in-depth review of each neobank:

Top UK Online Banks List

Have a look at some of the best UK neobank accounts eligible to UK residents and citizens:

Top Neobanks in the EU & EEA

The European Union and the wider European Economic Area arguably has the most advanced neobank industry in the world. Citizens and residents from these areas benefit from a variety of high-quality choices:

Top Neobanks in the US

Along with Europe, the United States has a well developed fintech and neobank industry. Innovative newcomers are always entering the scene at an impressive pace:

Neobanks in Switzerland

Open to citizens and eligible residents, Swiss neobanks are on the rise too:

Best Online Banks in Canada

The neobank industry in Canada is still in its early stages, but it is growing:

Pros and Cons of Neobanks & Online Banks Versus Traditional Banks

In recent years, digital neobanks have been fast on the rise in many countries across the globe. With traditional banks having little competitive incentive to reduce their fees, neobanks disrupted the industry by offering innovative financial solutions to customers at a reduced cost.

Thanks to this new competition and the post-pandemic digital transition, big banks have begun investing in financial technology and even partnering with neobank companies.

As a customer, this is great news. You have a plethora of choice ranging from tech-saavy big banks to fully-licensed digital banks to secondary finance apps. Here at Monito, we are committed to helping you find the best solution for you.

Pros of Neobanks

What makes them different from big high-street banks is their approach to their service, which includes the following:

  • Cheap: A lower cost structure than high-street banks means that users benefit from lower fees all-round.
  • Accessible: There's often less emphasis on being a resident of a particular country, and cross-border accounts are common.
  • Savvy: Services are conveniently online, with online and mobile banking generally being well-designed and easy to navigate.
  • Transparent: Communication and consumer-facing language tend to be more straightforward, conversational, and transparent.
  • Global: Many (although not all) neobanks tend to emphasize cross-border payments, international money transfers, and favourable exchange rates as part of their service package.

Cons of Neobanks

On the other hand, the following drawbacks mean that neobanks may not be cut out for everybody:

  • Branchless: Neobanks rarely, if ever, have any physical branches of their own, meaning that face-to-face consultation isn't an option for those customers who value it.
  • Limited: High-street banks offer a wide range of financial services, while neobanks tend to be considerably more restricted in terms of their scope of service.
  • Non-banks: Some (although not all) neobanks aren't, in fact, banks at all in the strict sense because they're organised as different legal entities entirely.

Comparing the Best Neobanks

In each dedicated guide, we compare relevant competitors one-on-one according to their level of security, fees, service quality, and customer satisfaction. Whether you a British citizen debating between Monzo and Revolut or an EU resident deciding between N26 and Wise, we have the comparison guide for you.

Our Monito experts dive into the legal background of each provider and read the fine print of each neobank's fee schedule to bring you the best and most in-depth analysis out there.

info icon

Visit our official YouTube channel for even more guidance on the neobank industry and how to choose the best neobank for you.

How to Set Up a Business Bank Account Online

Neobanks are not only making it easier for retail bank customers to open accounts virtually. Small business owners around the world are also benefitting from tech savvy and user friendly platforms to manage their business finances.

The process for opening a business bank account with a neobank will vary by country because each country will have its own tax reporting procedures and other corporate laws.

Have a look at our guides below to learn more about the options available to small business owners and international business alike:

Digital Banks for Businesses

Top 10 Online Small Business Checking Accounts in the US
February 4, 2022 - by Jarrod Suda
6 Best Online Business Bank Accounts for UK Small Business
July 26, 2022 - by Jarrod Suda
Disregarded Entity LLCs: Meaning and How to Start One in 2022
July 29, 2022 - by Jarrod Suda
How to Set Up a Company in the UK in 2022
November 9, 2021 - by Jarrod Suda
Payoneer Review
June 24, 2021 - by Byron Mühlberg
All You Need to Know About Wise Business (Formerly Transferwise for Business)
March 4, 2021 - by Olivia Willemin
Revolut Business Review: Is it safe? How does it work? What are the rates?
August 3, 2021 - by Rachel Wait
Tide Review: Is it safe? How does it work? What are the rates?
July 16, 2021 - by Rachel Wait

Is Neobank Premium Membership Worth It?

One of the greatest draws to neobanks is their access to basic banking services for zero monthly fees. However, most neobanks offer advanced services to customers who pay a premium.

Companies like Majority in the United States have opted for a monthly fee model. Most others, such as Revolut, N26, and Monzo, tier their services. They may set monthly allowances for free ATM withdrawals or free international money transfers. Others send beautifully engraved custom cards to paying members.

To lift these allowances and access more services, you may have to pay into higher tiers. In the following guides, we walk through what premium products you get and if they are worth the price tag:

What Neobank Is Best For Foreign Currency Accounts?

There are many reasons why you might need a bank account that holds foreign currency.

Perhaps you are an EU citizen preparing to move to the UK and want to begin holding pound sterling. If you are a non-US business who has American customers and makes frequent business trips to the US, then doing business in US dollars will save you a lot of money. Or perhaps you simply want to hold safe haven currencies like the US dollar, Swiss franc, and British pound.

Whatever your reason, you will want a bank account that allows you to hold foreign-denominated currency. In the following guides, we walk through neobanks that offer foreign currency solutions and show you how to open an account:

Best Foreign Currency Accounts

Our List of the Best Neobanks and Online Banks in 2022 by Monito Score

How We Rate Neobanks

In addition to comparing the fees and safety of neobanks, we try to review as many providers as possible in detail, to help you make the best decision when picking a new digital bank.

We developed the Monito Score, an evaluation based on 50+ criteria from how easy to how secure & transparent a neobank is.

Learn more about the Monito score

Frequently Asked Questions About the Best Online Banks and Neobanks

Why Trust Monito?

You’re probably all too familiar with the often outrageous cost of sending money abroad. After facing this frustration themselves back in 2013, co-founders François, Laurent, and Pascal launched a real-time comparison engine to compare the best money transfer services across the globe. Today, Monito’s award-winning comparisons, reviews, and guides are trusted by around 8 million people each year and our recommendations are backed by millions of pricing data points and dozens of expert tests — all allowing you to make the savviest decisions with confidence.

Learn More About Monito
  • Monito is trusted by 15+ million users across the globe.

  • Monito's experts spend hours researching and testing services so that you don't have to.

  • Our recommendations are always unbiased and independent.

Monito.com

Global Impact Finance Ltd
Avenue de Montchoisi 35
1006 Lausanne
Switzerland

Affiliate Disclosure
Instead of banner ads and paywalls, Monito makes money through affiliate links to the various payment service providers featured on our website. While we work hard to scout the market for the best deals, we're unable to consider every possible product available to you. Our extensive range of trusted affiliate partners enables us to make detailed, unbiased, and solution-driven recommendations for all types of consumer questions and problems. This allows us to match our users with the right providers to suit their needs and, in doing so, match our providers with new customers, creating a win-win for everybody involved. However, while some links on Monito may indeed earn us a commission, this fact never impacts the independence and integrity of our opinions, recommendations, and evaluations.