How to Narrow Down the Best Place to Open a Checking Account

Not all checking accounts are the same, so before you sign up for one, it's worth looking at a variety of factors that can help you make the best choice to suit your needs. The right account will not only be convenient and help you avoid fees, but will offer the specific services you need, and could even get you a bonus just for signing up.

Location of Branches and ATMs

If you need to visit a brick and mortar bank regularly, it's important to find a bank that operates near you. Beyond bank branches, however, ATMs are also worth looking at in terms of what network you have access to, and what you should expect to pay in fees if you use an out-of-network ATM for withdrawals. If you find yourself traveling and using ATMs often, make sure to look at what each bank offers you.

Fees and Fee Waivers

Checking accounts typically come with at least a few different types of fees. Since there can be several, it's worth looking at which fees a potential bank may charge. For example, some banks charge a monthly fee if your balance is under a certain amount. This can often be circumvented by making monthly direct deposits, but if you have a job that doesn't offer direct deposit, this could be a deal breaker.

When looking for places to open a checking account, don't count out credit unions; credit unions are sometimes less strict with fees, though they may not be as widely available or offer other services you need.

Banking Features

If you have a specific need in mind when it comes to banking, this is a good time to find out which bank offers what. For example, if mobile banking is important to you, look for banks with quality mobile apps. Some banks also offer digital debit cards, which let you use your phone rather than a physical card to make purchases, or virtual cards, also called temporary cards..


Some banks will offer promotions as a way to entice people to open checking accounts with them. For example, if you already have a credit account with a bank, they may offer you cash if you open a checking account with them as well. Sometimes, this can make banking more convenient; a checking and credit account with the same bank can make it easier to make payments or transfers.

Not all offers will be feasible, but since they are commonly offered, it's worth looking into what's available for you, as this could help make or break your decision.

For more information on personal checking, contact a business in West Pittston, PA.