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Best Online US Banks in 2024: Fees, Exchange Rates, Usability, Features, and More

Jarrod Suda

Reviewer

Feb 2, 2024
Advertiser disclosure

Low fees, convenience of use and, most of all, a seamless internet-based experience have increasingly allowed online banks to challenge traditional brick-and-mortar banks worldwide over the last few years, and the United States are no exception. 

If one of your resolutions for 2024 is to streamline your banking portfolio, you might be looking into digital alternatives like Chime, Wise, and Revolut to save on money and time but wondering which one is your best bet to replace your expensive and cumbersome traditional checking account. Our Monito experts have gone through the many players in the market to help you make the best possible choice.

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An award winning mobile financial app and debit card, Chime® stands out in Monito's ratings as a great all-around option for US residents looking for a banking alternative offering low fees and and an excellent experience.

How Monito Scores Online Banks

To determine which online banks scored better than others within the American market, we used a consumer-first framework to analyze several key factors. To begin with, we weighed a number of concrete metrics relating to factors such as fees and rates, ease of use, credibility, service and coverage, transparency, and customer satisfaction to piece together a reliable 360° view of which top digital banks offer the savviest solutions for US residents.

Next, we explored these results and presented our findings in the form of a series of key takeaways that we believe you should know about the three digital banks ranked highest.

While we ranked these online banks on an overall list, remember that this list does not mean that our choice for the best American digital bank is necessarily the best choice for you. As you'll see, each online bank comes with its own unique set of pros and cons that may impact its overall relevance to you.

Furthermore, in our definition of "online bank," we only considered online-first banks and not traditional legacy banks that have merely pivoted to digital banking in recent years while still maintaining an extensive brick-and-mortar infrastructure.

So, without further ado, let's go through our rankings for the top online US banks in 2024 —

Best Basic All-Rounder: Chime

Founded in 2013, Chime® is an excellent mobile account, as its 12 million customers can attest. Our Monito experts particularly like its low fees across the board and its panel of features, which includes fee-free overdraft on debit card purchases and cash withdrawals⁵ offered via a special optional service called SpotMe®.

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Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by The Bancorp Bank, N.A. or Stride Bank, N.A., Members FDIC.

Chime also offers free in-network ATM withdrawals¹ and even gives you APY at 2.00%³. There are a few downsides, most notably the fact that you won't be able to send or receive wire transfers, and you can pay a lot in fees if you need to add cash to the app. On the whole, though, Chime offers simple online checking that's well-liked by its users.

If you're looking for a mobile financial app and you don't need an extensive list of features, we believe that Chime is probably the best choice you could make!

Best for Frequent Travelers: Juno

Juno is a fairly young US fintech, offering a checking account and a debit card available either as a virtual MasterCard or a metal physical card — as long as you set up at least $500 a month in direct deposits.

Our Monito experts like the quality of its service, even though it doesn’t offer as many features as some of its competitors. They also loved the fact that it is very cheap to use both domestically and internationally, with no monthly cost and almost no fees charged, even for out-of-network ATM withdrawals. As a nice bonus, it offers a cashback of 5% on five brands of your choosing and access to a crypto wallet. However, its youth also means that it doesn’t have as many customer reviews as other services, which makes it harder to gauge customer satisfaction with its product. 

Its exposure to cryptocurrency might make it hard to recommend as a main bank account, but we believe that OnJuno’s offering makes a lot of sense as a secondary account for travelers and digital nomads.

Best for Families: Current

Launched in 2015, Current brands itself as “not a bank, but better than a bank.” Though the claim is debatable if you’re looking for an extensive slate of banking products, they do offer a good basic digital checking account and card, with features like free ATM withdrawals and a pretty solid rewards program.

Our Monito experts particularly like their teen accounts, which allows you to open a monitored account for your children, though the feature does come with a yearly $36 fee. More generally, one of Current’s main problems is that their best features are locked behind fees: to benefit from their expedited direct deposit feature or their fee-free overdraft, you’ll have to spring for their premium account at $4.99 a month.

Current’s basic account doesn’t have as much functionality as some other banks in this ranking, so if you’re looking to make use of its premium features, it might be worth weighing other options before subscribing to the paid plan, especially if their rewards program doesn’t seem to offer much in your area. There’s one area where we think Current as the edge, however: if you’re looking to open a monitored account for your teens, they’re one of the better options.

Best for International Transfers: Wise

If you often need to send or receive money abroad, you might be familiar with Wise. Formerly known as TransferWise, this UK-based fintech made its name by enabling cheap and fast international money transfers, bypassing traditional SWIFT transfers — which makes it a frequently featured player in Monito’s comparison engine.

Aside from its money transfer product, Wise also offers a multi-currency account, which comes with a debit MasterCard. Its main feature is that it allows you to hold money in more than 50 currencies and gives you account details for 10 of them, including USD, EUR or GBP — though note that you will have to pay a small fee actually to exchange money.

Although it’s not as fully featured as other choices on this list, Wise’s account might be a practical solution if you need to get paid outside the US — and if you regularly use Monito’s comparison engine, you know it’s often worth it to have a Wise account at the ready, as they are often the best choice to send money abroad. Be mindful, however, that their multi-currency account is not a bank account and as such, is not FDIC-insured. The money you keep on it is safeguarded, but it’s not protected to quite the same extent as it would be with most accounts on this list, and as such Wise is probably not the best choice if you’re looking to replace a traditional bank account.

Another Great Option for Traveling: Revolut

UK-based fintech giant Revolut is also active in the US, offering its checking account and debit card in partnership with Metropolitan Commercial Bank, Member FDIC.

On top of a host of finance features like early direct deposit, free ATM withdrawals or an interest-earning savings account, Revolut also offers a lot of internationally-oriented features, like ten free foreign transfers a month, free foreign exchange up to $1000 a month, and the ability to hold a balance in foreign currencies, which makes it a good choice for those who frequently travel abroad.

Disclaimers

Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services and debit card provided by The Bancorp Bank, N.A. or Stride Bank, N.A.; Members FDIC. Credit Builder card issued by Stride Bank, N.A.

¹ Out-of-network ATM withdrawal and over-the-counter advance fees may apply. See here for details.

² To apply for Credit Builder, you must have received a single qualifying direct deposit of $200 or more to your Chime Checking Account. The qualifying direct deposit must be from your employer, payroll provider, gig economy payer, or benefits payer by Automated Clearing House (ACH) deposit OR Original Credit Transaction (OCT). Bank ACH transfers, Pay Anyone transfers, verification or trial deposits from financial institutions, peer to peer transfers from services such as PayPal, Cash App, or Venmo, mobile check deposits, cash loads or deposits, one-time direct deposits, such as tax refunds and other similar transactions, and any deposit to which Chime deems to not be a qualifying direct deposit are not qualifying direct deposits.

³ The Annual Percentage Yield ("APY") for the Chime Savings Account is variable and may change anytime. The disclosed APY is effective as of September 20, 2023. No minimum balance is required. Must have $0.01 in savings to earn interest.

⁴ On-time payment history can have a positive impact on your credit score. Late payment may negatively impact your credit score. Results may vary.

⁵ SpotMe® on Credit is an optional, no-interest/no-fee overdraft line of credit tied to the Secured Deposit Account available to qualifying members with an active Chime Credit Builder Account. SpotMe on Debit is an optional, no-fee overdraft service attached to the Chime Checking Account available to qualifying members after Visa debit card activation. Both SpotMe on Credit and SpotMe on Debit are sometimes collectively referred to as "SpotMe" or, if you have signed up to use SpotMe with only one account, "SpotMe" means the elected service. To qualify for SpotMe, you must receive $200 or more in qualifying direct deposits to your Chime Checking Account monthly. Qualifying members will be allowed to overdraw their Chime Checking Account and/or Secured Deposit Account (associated with your Chime Credit Builder credit card) up to $20 but may be later eligible for a higher limit of up to $200 or more based on Chime account history, direct deposit frequency and amount, spending activity and other risk-based factors. The SpotMe limit will be displayed within the Chime mobile app and is subject to change at any time, at Chime’s sole discretion. Although Chime does not charge any overdraft fees for SpotMe, there may be out-of-network or third-party fees associated with ATM transactions. SpotMe Debit Terms and Conditions and SpotMe on Credit Terms and Conditions.

Compare the Top Online Banks in the USA

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Sort by
  1. Wise Multi-Currency Account Monito Score 8.9
    open
    • Languages
      English +21
    • Country availability
      Austria +37
    • Services
      Multi-currency account
    • Monthly fee
      Very low
    • Card delivery time
      Mid
    • Best for
      Spending while abroad
    • Bank details
      Euro IBAN +11
    • Supported currencies
      US dollar +50
    • Overdraft
    • Annual interest rate
      Very low
    • Supports cash deposits
    • International transfers
  2. Chime Monito Score 8.8
    open
    • Languages
      English
    • Country availability
      United States
    • Services
      All-in-one finance app
    • Monthly fee
      Very low
    • Card delivery time
      Mid
    • Best for
      Everyday banking
    • Bank details
      US account & routing no.
    • Supported currencies
      US dollar
    • Overdraft
    • Annual interest rate
      Low
    • Supports cash deposits
    • International transfers
  3. Revolut Monito Score 8.6
    open
    • Languages
      English +20
    • Country availability
      Austria +35
    • Services
      All-in-one finance app
    • Monthly fee
      Very low
    • Card delivery time
      Mid
    • Best for
      Spending online +1
    • Bank details
      UK account no. & sort code +1
    • Supported currencies
      United Arab Emirates dirham +26
    • Overdraft
    • Annual interest rate
      Very low
    • Supports cash deposits
    • International transfers

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.

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