Find and compare Australian bank accounts

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$0

Free access to thousands of ATMs nationwide

CUA

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

3.96

/ 5
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$0

P&N Bank

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

3.96

/ 5
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$0

Over 3,000 Westpac Group ATMs

Citi

Gold Award Winner 2020

0.90%

MasterCard

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

4.39

/ 5
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$1

Over 5,000 network ATMs

The Mutual

0.10%

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

0.00

/ 5
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$2

Over 3,400 RediATMs

Transport Mutual Credit Union

0.07%

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

0.00

/ 5
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$0

Over 10,000 ATMs

UBank

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

4.39

/ 5
More details

$0

Westpac

MasterCard

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

4.14

/ 5
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$1

Over 3,000 rediATMs

Australian Military Bank

0.01%

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

0.00

/ 5
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$0

Over 3,000 rediATMs

Australian Military Bank

1.25%

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

0.00

/ 5
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$0

Westpac

MasterCard

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

3.84

/ 5
More details

$0

Over 3,000 rediATMs

Bank Australia

0.01%

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

3.65

/ 5
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$0

Access at any ATM

ING

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

5.00

/ 5
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$0

Over 3,000 rediATMs

SERVICE ONE Alliance Bank

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

2.86

/ 5
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$0

Over 3,000 Westpac Group ATMs

St.George Bank

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

3.47

/ 5
More details

$0

Over 3,000 rediATMs

Suncorp Bank

0.01%

Visa

Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account

3.04

/ 5
More details

Learn more about bank accounts

A bank account is the workhorse of the personal financial world. Although it doesn’t have the bells and whistles of other products, most people in Australia need one to get by.

Choose the right bank account – one that offers convenience, plenty of access and minimal fees – and it will make managing money a whole lot easier.

So, how do you choose a bank account that best suits your needs, especially with so many products on the market? Here is a quick guide to help you out.

What is a bank account?

An Australian bank account (sometimes called a ‘transaction account’ or ‘everyday account’) is an account where you can deposit your pay, receive government benefits and access your money in different ways, such as through ATM withdrawals, debit card transactions, electronic transfer and bank cheques.

A good bank account should help you manage your finances better. Think of it as a tool that allows you to direct exactly where you want your money to go. For example, you may use your account to:

  • Setting up an automatic direct debit for regular payments
  • Using BPAY to pay for bills
  • Link to a high-interest savings account so you can set money aside as savings
  • Withdraw a certain amount of cash each week for spending
  • Keep tabs on whether you’ve been paid by your employer through an app

What features should I look for in a bank account?

There are many bank accounts to choose from in Australia, each offering different features that help you manage your money.

To find a bank account that suits your needs, consider the following:

Easy accessibility

When it comes to spending, ask yourself: what type of access do you need? A lot of bank accounts offer the basics – ATM access, eftpos, a debit card for purchases – but it is worth considering what type of access suits your spending habits.

Do you take cash out on a regular basis? You may want to choose a lender that has a comprehensive network of ATMs. Are you a traveller? Consider a lender that offers cash withdrawals at overseas ATMs and international money transfers. Prefer to speak to someone in person about your account? A bank with a branch near your home may be what you need.

Minimal fees

Transaction bank accounts typically offer very low rates of interest. This means that a good way to differentiate one product from another is the fees they come attached with. Typical bank account fees you may cross paths with are:

  • Account-keeping fees which cover the administration costs of managing your account
  • ATM withdrawal fees if you withdraw money from an ATM (most lenders charge even more if you use another bank’s ATM)
  • Eftpos transaction fee for paying with eftpos while shopping
  • Branch fees for when you visit the lender’s branch for services
  • Foreign transaction fee or a currency conversation when you access your money while overseas
  • Electronic transaction fee for internet banking

Also check if the lender charges a fee if you don’t make a monthly minimum deposit into your account.

It is worth shopping around for a bank account with a competitive offering. Many lenders will waive monthly fees, as well as offer free services such as own bank ATM withdrawal, eftpos, direct debit and internet banking.

Online features

Online banking isn’t just for the digitally savvy; it can be a convenient option for anyone who prefers to do their banking at home or on the run.

To take advantage of the convenience technology offers, consider opening a bank account with a bank that has a mobile app and internet banking, so you can transfer money across accounts, pay bills and check your balance online. Digital wallets and contactless payments can also be a good feature to have, especially if you are the type of spender who doesn’t like to carry cash.

Tailored for my needs

While most transaction bank accounts in Australia are suitable for anyone, some lenders offer accounts specifically suited to a certain demographic or stage of life. These may include:

  • Student bank accounts – for those engaged in full-time study, these bank accounts often charge no account-keeping or ATM fees
  • Online-only bank accounts – online-only lenders don’t operate any branches, so they can potentially offer savings in fees
  • Pensioner savings account – many lenders offer unlimited withdrawals, no monthly fee and increased fraud protection
  • Joint accounts – these can be held in two names if you want to share financial management with a long-term partner, or work together towards a financial goal

Frequently asked questions

Opening a bank account for someone under 18

How do I close a bank account?

Closing a bank account is one of those tasks that’s easy to put in the too-hard basket. There are quite a few steps involved, some which may require you to hang on the phone for a while.  

Here’s a handy checklist of items to tick off, so the job gets done quicker. If you don’t do your banking online, the following steps can also be done at a branch.   

  • Cancel any scheduled or recurring payments
  • Update your direct debit details (such as loan repayments) with creditors
  • Export your payee address book (to keep a record of saved third-party bank account details)
  • Transfer the balance of your account (to the new bank account)
  • Close your account online, or by calling the bank or visiting a branch

Can you find your bank account number online?

If your bank offers online services, you should be able to find your bank account number online by logging into your account on your bank’s website and checking your details there.

Keep in mind that each type of account you have with a bank comes with a unique account number. This means if you have a bank account as well as a savings account, for example, your bank account number and your savings account number will be different.

If you don’t have access to your bank account online or can’t login, you should be able to find your account number on a mailed bank statement, if you have one.

Alternatively, you can call your bank’s customer service number or visit a branch to retrieve your account number.

Can you open another account at the same bank?

Yes, you can open another account at the same bank if you already have an account there, but some banks place a limit on how many specific accounts you can open.

Generally, though, it is possible to have more than one everyday account, one personal account and one joint account, or have different types of accounts – such as a transaction account and a savings account.

Keep in mind that some bank accounts come with fees, so you could be charged twice for having two types of the same account at the same bank.

Also, if you have more than one high-interest transaction account at the same bank, only one account will be able to earn the highest rate of interest.

Can I have a PayPal account without a bank account?

You don’t need a bank account to send or receive money through PayPal. However, you do need a bank account if you want to withdraw money from your PayPal account.

Can I close my bank account over the phone?

In most cases, you can close a personal or business bank account over the phone. In fact, this is the best way to ensure you’ve closed an account properly.

By speaking to a banking representative, you can capture and close out any pending transactions, or interest owing/payable on the account being closed.

In the instance where the account is a joint account, or you have multiple bank accounts you want to close, your bank may send you a form that you need to fill out and return.

Either way, you would be advised over the phone of the steps you need to take. Calling your bank ahead of closing an account is often a smart course of action.

How do I open a new bank account?

There are a number of ways to open a new bank account – online, over the phone or in the branch. The trick is to decide what type of bank account you want beforehand.

It might sound like a simple enough task, but there are literally hundreds of bank accounts to choose from. And each offer their own banking features and benefits.

A comparison site like RateCity can help you work out what bank account product matches your needs.

Once you’ve made up your mind what you want, it’s advisable to have the following information ready for the application process.

  • A couple of forms of identification (such as driver’s licence, Medicare card, passport)
  • Tax file number
  • Residential address, contact phone number and email (though email is not essential)

How to transfer money to another bank account

Transferring money to another bank is often called a bank transfer, and it can be done a few different ways.

Customers generally need three pieces of information to transfer money to another bank account. Customers need the account name, BSB and account number of the account they wish to transfer money to.

One way of transferring money to another bank account is in a branch with the help of a staff member; they will often give you a receipt as well as confirmation of the transfer.

Transfers can be also made via internet banking and phone banking.

Some banks also allow customers to make transfers via partnered ATMs, especially if the account is with the same bank.

How do you set up a bank account online?

Once you’ve compared bank accounts and found the right one, the process of opening a bank account online is quite simple and can be done in around 10 minutes.

To set up a bank account online, you’ll need to prove your identity and provide an approved form of ID as well as your tax file number (TFN).

If you’re a new customer of the bank, you’ll need to verify your identity and potentially upload documents before you can complete your online application.

Once your ID has been verified and you’ve set up your bank account online, you should receive your bank cards in the mail along with your PIN and any other account details.

Can foreigners open bank account in Australia?

If you’re migrating, studying or working in Australia, you’ll be pleased to know that you can open an Australian bank account. For the most part, opening a bank account in Australia is a simple process which starts by comparing the types of bank accounts foreigners can open in Australia.

Once you’ve found a bank account that suits your needs, you can start the application process.

When you apply for the account, you’ll need to provide proof of ID which may include your passport, overseas ID or credit card. You may also need to provide a copy of your visa and proof of address in Australia.

Depending on the bank and the type of account you choose, you may be able to apply for the account online or over the phone before you arrive in Australia.

Can you deposit money into somebody else's bank account?

One of the easiest banking tasks in the world is depositing money. You can even deposit money into someone else’s bank account if you wish.

The basic information you need to deposit money into a third-party bank account is:

  • Payee’s name
  • Bank, building society or credit union (though this isn’t necessary)
  • BSB (or bank code, which is the branch identifier)
  • Account number

Including the name of the financial institution isn’t necessary – particularly with online banking – because the BSB will identify this for you.

A handy tip is to record yourself (or add a personal message) in the transaction description or reference. This will show up on the recipients account, letting them know who’s paid them the money.

Can I open a bank account in another country?

Despite having a bad rap for facilitating tax evasion, it is possible and legal to open a bank account in another country, also known as an ‘offshore account’.

Some people choose to open a bank account in another country to invest overseas, for higher interest-earning potential or to access foreign banking services.

The process for opening an offshore bank account differs depending on the financial institution and country in which you’re opening the account.

Typically, you will need to provide identification such as a passport, a local bank statement and a signed declaration proving the source of the money being used to open your account. Usually, deposits into offshore accounts can be made by international money transfer.

Can I open bank accounts for my children?

A common question for new parents is, ‘Can I open a bank account for my child?’

The short answer is yes – as a parent you can open a bank account for your child.

Once you’ve compared your options and found a bank account that suits your needs, the process is relatively simple.

As the bank account is for your child, you’ll need to provide some documentation such as proof of ID, including your tax file number.

You will also need a copy of your child’s birth certificate, and in some cases you may also need to sign a guarantee of indemnity.

Depending on the bank and whether you’re an existing customer, you may be able to open a bank account for your child online. However, you may still need to go into a branch to prove your identity.

How do I open a bank account for a child?

There are few better ways for a child to learn about money management than through savings. And there’s a plethora of bank accounts designed specifically for young people and children.

A bank account for a child can be opened online, over the phone or in a branch in a few easy steps. The minimum age a child can open a bank account for themselves usually ranges between 12 and 14.

If the child is too young to open the account, you can do it for them as their legal parent or guardian. 

To do this, you would need to be over 18, have an Australian residential address and currently reside in Australia (or have proof of residency).

You would also need to provide:

  • Identification for yourself and the child
  • Your tax file number (TFN) or TFN exemption

Depending on the bank account, you might be able to choose what level of access the child has to their bank account (online and via the phone).

How do you open a bank account in Australia?

Opening a bank account in Australia is usually a straightforward process. Some banks give you the option of opening an account online, while others require you to visit a branch.

Different bank accounts offer different features, so it’s best to compare your options to find one that suits you.

All banks require you to pass an identity check to open a bank account. Australia uses the 100-point identification system, which means you’ll need to show a number of forms of ID that, together, add up to 100 points.

Common ID types include a driver’s licence, passport, Australian visa in a foreign passport, and Australian Medicare card. You’ll find out what types of ID are accepted when you go through the sign-up process online or at a branch.

Once your account is open, you’ll be given or sent a debit card that you can use to make purchases and withdraw money from your account.

Do I need to open a business bank account?

Just because you’re in business doesn’t necessarily mean you need a business bank account. You could be a sole trader not registered for GST, and use your personal bank account for business.

If you do want a business account, there are plenty of benefits attached to business transaction and savings accounts, as well as business term deposits.

There are business bank accounts designed for businesses with a high volume of transactions, and those for start-ups with a small amount of trade. You could also include an EFTPOS service with your account.

Some business bank accounts charge for the number of transactions per month, while others offer a pay-as-you-go fee structure, where you only pay fees for transactions you make.

It’s up to you whether your priority is mainly transactions, or earning the maximum amount of interest on your principal. There’s a business banking solution for you if you need one.

Are bank accounts frozen when someone dies?

Yes, Australian bank accounts are frozen when someone dies. If you want to close the account of somebody who has died, you might have to provide proof of death and a copy of the will. You might also have to prove your relationship to the deceased person.

If you have a joint bank account with somebody who has died, you will generally be entitled to all the money in the account. Again, you might have to provide proof of death if you want to change the bank account from a joint account to a one-person account.

How do you delete your bank account from PayPal?

Deleting your bank account from PayPal is a simple three-step process:

  • Go to your Wallet
  • Choose the account you’d like to delete
  • Click ‘Remove bank account’

How do I close my bank account online?

You can usually easily open a bank account online, but you often can’t close it online.

Many banks and credit unions will only let you close an account if you go into a branch or call them on the phone.

However, some banks will let you request to close the account via your internet banking. Check your financial provider’s website for details.

Just remember: If you still have funds in the bank account, transfer them to another account, or withdraw the cash. Also, if you have any payments like direct debits going in or out of the bank account, these will also stop when you close your account.

Can British expats still open bank accounts?

As a British expat, you can open an Australian bank account, and you can apply for an account the same ways an Aussie would. You can even open an account online from the UK prior to relocating.

If you’re overseas, the bank you choose to open an account with may call you to provide you with our new account details beforehand. You can then have your ID verified within a branch once you’ve arrived.

And if you’re already living down under, the following list outlines the types of information required by most banks when opening an Australian bank account.

  • Australian residential address
  • Tax file number (TFN) or a TFN exemption
  • Identification (this can be your passport)