Saving money while you’re in college is super important for a multitude of reasons, which is why we’re put together this list of the best college student accounts. You’ll establish credit, have spending money, and learn how to manage a budget. And while there’s tons of options out there when it comes to checking accounts, not all are created equal.
We’ve rounded up 10 of the best checking accounts for college students. With perks and kickbacks designed for you to hold onto your money and spend it on what’s important, you’ll be a financial wizard by the time your walk for graduation.
1. Chase Bank College Checking Account
The Chase Bank College Checking Account really has everything you could need. It’s designed for college student between the ages of 17 and 24, and there’s no monthly service fee until after you graduate. There’s a huge network of Chase banks all across the country, so you’ll always be near an ATM. You even get a sign on bonus of $100 when you sign up!
2. Capital One MONEY Checking Account
Capital One has a great checking account option for students if you want to get some money in your account before you head off to college—you don’t have to be 18 to sign up! There’s also no monthly fees or minimum balances, and Capital One has over 70,000 fee-free ATMs across the country. Plus, you’ll earn plenty of interest, too.
3. Bank of America Advantage Banking
This checking account from Bank of America is your standard student checking account, but it waives the monthly maintenance fee for college students under 25 years old. You have to have a minimum deposit of of $25 or $100, depending on if you get the Advantage SafeBalance or Advantage Plus account. Bank of America also has the Keep the Change® program, which rounds up purchases to the nearest dollar and puts the change in your account automatically.
4. Discover Cash Back Debit Account
While this account isn’t directly aimed at students, they can still take advantage of it while they’re in college. There’s no monthly fee, no minimum deposit, overdraft fee, or ATM fee (and these all stay, even after you graduate). You also get 1% cash back on up to $3,000 in monthly debit card purchases, which equates to an additional $360 per year.
5. PNC Virtual Wallet Student Account
The PNC college account is basically three rolled into one: Spend, which is your primary checking account; Reserve, an interest-bearing account; and Growth, a long-term savings account. The PNC bank student account is ideal to get if you’re serious about keeping to a budget while you’re in college. There’s also a $0 minimum deposit and waives on the monthly service fees for students.
6. Truist Student Checking Account
Truist’s checking account is designed for students 23 and younger. If you don’t recognise the name, it’s because Truist came about from a merger between BB&T and SunTrust Banks. The Truist mobile app is one of the best, if not the best, on the market, making mobile banking easier than ever. You can also set saving and spending goals, allowing you to stay on track financially while you’re at school. Unfortunately, Truist is only available in 15 states so far: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, and D.C.
7. U.S. Bank Student Checking Account
If you’re going to school at one of the 45 universities in 16 states (primarily in the Midwest), take advantage of the U.S. Bank Student Checking Account. You’ll be able to link your student ID with your account, allowing you to use your ID at ATMs and for PIN purchases. Perfect for when you’re just running out and need to make a quick purchase on campus.
8. AXOS Bank Rewards Checking
Low fees and low minimum deposits make this AXOS account a great choice. You’ll also automatically have access to over 91,000 ATMs across the country with unlimited domestic fee reimbursements for out of network ATMs. The mobile banking app also consistently receives high reviews, making banking on the go super accessible.
9. Chime Checking Account
Saving money while you spend? Yeah, sign us up. Thanks to Chime’s Round Up feature, you’ll get some extra money automatically deposited into your account when you use your debit card for purchases. With few fees and small minimums, this is another great student banking option. Oh, and did we mention you can get your direct deposit up to two days early?
10. Ally Bank Interest Checking Account
With almost no fees associated with the account, Ally wants you to spend your money on the important stuff—not bank fees. You can use your debit card at over 55,000 ATMs across the United States, and the mobile app makes things like depositing checks and other daily money habits a breeze.
There’s plenty of options out there when it comes to choosing a checking account for college. Just be sure to find one that fits how you plan on spending and saving your money while you’re in school. That way, you can use your money on the important stuff without stressing about it.
Want to know everything there is to know about college life? Check out our ultimate college guide here.