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Best Checking Accounts for Students

Updated on April 7, 2013

the best checking accounts for students meet their specific needs.

although your parents bank at a certain institution, it may not be the right one for you.
although your parents bank at a certain institution, it may not be the right one for you. | Source
if you are leaving for college and havent already chosen a bank for your financial needs, now is a great time to do so.
if you are leaving for college and havent already chosen a bank for your financial needs, now is a great time to do so. | Source

financial needs of students are different from other populations

Students, especially college students are just getting started in the world of finance and having a great checking account to begin your experience is a must. A number of financial institutions are offering specialized accounts directed at the student demographic. Institutions that include; banks, credit unions, online banking services and others want your business. Make certain whichever one you choose works best for your needs.

There is a difference in what is needed for the young and usually inexperienced account holders in the student population. The best ones found in the marketplace today for this group of people are those that do not have any minimum deposit balance or account fees while providing online banking capabilities as well as competitive rates of interest on any deposit. Access to an ATM service without charge would provide an icing on the cake for many.

Start planning for your checking account needs now if you are leaving soon for college and haven’t already done so. You will definitely need a place to put your cash and take care of your business needs with the school and personal finances. Numerous students have never managed finances before heading off on their own for higher education.

For the last decade or so, nearly all banking institutions provided free checking accounts. However, times are changing and many of the major banks are converting these free of charge accounts to fee based ones. They are attempting to make up for profits loss during the financial crisis of the last couple of years. Any kind that charges for using their services are not the best types for students.

These are a couple of great checking accounts in the marketplace for students;

INGs Electric Orange Checking Account Bank

ING created this particular checking account with a lot of student checking account needs in mind. This is one of the better ones for a number of reasons. All of your banking is done online with the ING Electric Orange Checking Account. This is an absolutely free to use checking account.

The one downside or disadvantage is you will need to mail in all of your deposits or have a different checking account set up for deposits that can be transferred to the ING checking account electronically online. They do have a direct deposit option available for those students with a regular direct deposit scheduled.

USAA Free Checking Bank

The USAA free account for checking is dedicated to military personnel and their families or USAA members. This particular bank is used to accommodating customers around the world. Therefore, they can provide you with great service while away at any college in the world.

They do have mobile deposit capabilities along with USAA deposit at home so your money will get into your account while you attend classes at college. USAA provides free of charge checks, bill pay and overdraft protection. With a lot of free services in addition to the free checking account USAA is extremely attractive for the college student budget.

Perkstreet Financial Bank

Perkstreet Financial Bank stands apart from the rest of the list because they provide a reward checking account. Similar to reward credit cards, they have a cash back debit card option. Cash back is earned for purchases you make with your debit card.

The checking account has no minimum balance requirement and no fees for checking. Their network of ATMS is huge with over 37,000 available. This is an online bank and you can use direct deposit or transfers from another bank account to get started. Simply electronically make a deposit and you are on your way,

In conclusion

Always shop around for any type of bank account by comparing services. Don’t avoid the banks your parents use. However, you may need another type or kind because your needs are different from what they use their financial services for. However, it certainly does not hurt to review what they have to offer.

Find the best banks for college students in the market that can meet your needs. Although the few mentioned here are some of the best for student checking accounts, they do have different pros and cons. Weigh your personal needs and wants and make an informed decision.

Many banks or credit unions will provide what they label as “student accounts” that may fit your needs. Though, not every bank is for everyone.

More information for comparing checking accounts for the student


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    • tamron profile image

      tamron 6 years ago

      I will have to keep this in mind as my son will be going to college soon. Vote Up! Stumble Ya

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 6 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Great resources! Many students can also get started through credit unions, which almost always offer free checking. School credit unions, such as university credit unions, also frequently offer other perks to students.