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Show Online Partners Only?

We provide links to our Online Partners. If you click through to an Online Partner, you can get more product information, apply for or purchase the product and RateCity may earn a fee for referring you. This is one of the ways RateCity makes money and how we can offer our comparison service to you for free. See how we make money for more.

Product

Everyday Options

Real Time Rating™

4.37

/ 5

Winner of Best Bank Account, RateCity Gold Awards 2022

ATM Fee

$0

Over 3,000 rediATMs

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

4.37

/ 5
Go to site

special

An easy, everyday banking account packed with flexible options to help you spend, budget & save better. $0 monthly account keeping fees & option to add up 9 sub-accounts

Winner of Best Bank Account, RateCity Gold Awards 2022

Product

Everyday Global Account

Real Time Rating™

5.00

/ 5

Winner of Best Bank Account, RateCity Gold Awards 2022

ATM Fee

$0

Over 13,000 ATMs customers can use in Australia with no ATM fees

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

5.00

/ 5
Go to site

Cashback

2% cashback (up to AUD 50/month) on eligible tap and pay.

Winner of Best Bank Account, RateCity Gold Awards 2022

Product

Global Currency Account

Real Time Rating™

4.81

/ 5

Winner of Best Bank Account, RateCity Gold Awards 2022

ATM Fee

$0

Over 3,000 Westpac Group ATMs

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

4.81

/ 5
Go to site

Winner of Best Bank Account, RateCity Gold Awards 2022

Product

Plus Account

Real Time Rating™

4.50

/ 5
ATM Fee

$0

Over 3,000 Westpac Group ATMs

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

4.50

/ 5
Go to site
Product

Spend Account

Real Time Rating™

4.50

/ 5

Winner of Best Bank Account, RateCity Gold Awards 2022

ATM Fee

$0

Online only

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

4.50

/ 5
Go to site

Winner of Best Bank Account, RateCity Gold Awards 2022

Product

Easy Transaction Account

Real Time Rating™

4.68

/ 5
ATM Fee

$0

Approximately 3,400 CommBank Branded ATMs

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

4.68

/ 5
Go to site
Product

Everyday Edge Account

Real Time Rating™

4.05

/ 5

Winner of Best Bank Account, RateCity Gold Awards 2022

ATM Fee

$0

Free access to thousands of ATMs nationwide

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

4.05

/ 5
Go to site

special

$0 monthly account fee.

Winner of Best Bank Account, RateCity Gold Awards 2022

Product

Access Basic Account

Real Time Rating™

3.93

/ 5
ATM Fee

$0

2183

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

3.93

/ 5
Go to site
Product

Student Account

Real Time Rating™

3.93

/ 5
ATM Fee

$0

Over 2,000 ATM combined network locations including Suncorp Bank

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

3.93

/ 5
Go to site
Product

Transaction Access Account

Real Time Rating™

3.74

/ 5
ATM Fee

Over 3,000 rediATMs

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

3.74

/ 5
Go to site
Product

Purple Transactor Account

Real Time Rating™

3.74

/ 5
ATM Fee

$0

Over 3,000 rediATMs

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

3.74

/ 5
Go to site
Product

Student Starter

Real Time Rating™

3.74

/ 5
ATM Fee

$0

Over 3,000 rediATMs

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

3.74

/ 5
Go to site
Product

Simply Access

Real Time Rating™

3.74

/ 5
ATM Fee

$0

Over 3,000 Westpac Group ATMs

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

3.74

/ 5
Go to site
Product

Everyday Account

Real Time Rating™

3.74

/ 5
ATM Fee

$0

Over 3,000 rediATMs

Company
Features
Apple Pay
Google Pay
Interest rate
Overseas ATM facilities
Samsung Pay
Linked account
Real Time Rating™

3.74

/ 5
Go to site

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Bank account providers we compare at RateCity

Learn more about bank accounts

Your personal bank account – also known as a transaction account – is your most active bank account.

This is where you make deposits and manage your daily financial needs by withdrawing cash, buying groceries, paying bills and transferring money.

So when you compare bank accounts, it’s important you’re able to identify the right bank account for you. That means being able to understand its features and benefits, as well as any drawbacks.

Securing a bank account with the features for your liking can help save you time and money.

What’s a bank account?

All bank accounts, or transaction accounts, have their own distinctive features, but all provide the same basic service, which is to help you access your money for everyday expenses.

This can be done by issuing bank cheques, debit card purchases and ATM or branch withdrawals.

Bank accounts are a convenient way to to keep your money in a secure place.

The benefits of a bank account

A bank account gives you the means to manage daily monetary transactions and keep tabs on your money.

Some of the benefits of a transaction bank account are:

  • It is a secure and safe place to keep your money. This can be useful during volatile economic situations. For the record, the Australian government offers a guarantee of up to $250,000 on deposits at authorised deposit-taking institutions (subject to certain conditions).
  • It is a convenient way to organise your hard-earned cash. It is great for paying bills, paying for goods and services, receiving wages or Centrelink benefits and transferring money to someone else.
  • It makes it easy to keep a record of all your transactions. This makes it easier to budget, and also comes in handy when you apply for a home or business loan. This gives lenders an insight into your financial habits.
  • It is a good place to save money and build your assets. You can link your transaction account to a savings account, which can help your earn higher interest.
  • It will often be fee-free, provided you make a certain amount of deposits per month (for example $2,000).

Choosing a bank account

A good bank account will help you manage your money efficiently and help you attain your financial objectives. People have their own goals and preferences, so here are some questions to ask when you compare bank accounts:

What are the main features you want in a bank account? We all have our own preferences when it comes to favourite bank account features. Some prefer convenience and flexibility; others want to earn points on their purchases or have access to Apple Pay. You can always exercise the process of evaluating if your needs are being met by your bank account; if you are not satisfied, you can always shift to another bank. The options are plentiful, so it doesn’t hurt to compare bank accounts and see what alternatives are out there.

Will this bank account meet your ATM needs? Being able to gain access to an ATM might be important, although you might have to pay for the privilege in the form of a fee. That said, many banks will exempt you from fees if you deposit your salary or a minimum amount into your bank account each month.  

What sort of account fulfils your needs? Transaction bank accounts are intended for your daily banking needs: it can be an account where your salary goes in and one that you pay the bills and the groceries with. Some banks will charge you if you exceed the number of transactions in a set period, while some will offer unlimited transactions for a monthly fee. However, in this highly competitive market, some banks are offering accounts with unlimited transactions and no monthly fees, which is another reason why it pays to compare bank accounts.

What are your financial goals? Your age and your financial status also plays a part in your choice of bank account. For example, if you are in a wealth-building phase, you might want an account that incentivises you to deposit a certain amount in your account each month. This might also suit young couples who are saving for a deposit for a home loan. These accounts may come with a set number of transactions per month and a fee might apply if you go over the limit.

How many transactions do you want to make per month? Also, do you want extras like a debit card or a cheque book? Do you need access to internet banking?

With a wide variety of bank accounts on the market now, it can be difficult to compare bank accounts and pick the best one for you. Some accounts have no monthly fees. Others give you a fixed number of free transactions every month. The added features can make a difference when it comes to choice…so the choice is yours.

Frequently asked questions

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.

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 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.

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.

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 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 I close a bank account with pending transactions?

You can close a bank account with pending transactions. But after the account is closed, any incoming transactions will be declined by your (old) bank.

The best way to ensure this doesn’t occur is to either wait to close your account until all pending transactions are complete, or contact the creditor and supply them with alternate bank details.

If you’re unsure whether you have any scheduled transactions, you can speak to a banking representative over the phone or via online support.

In most cases, your bank withholds the amount owing for pending transactions (such as online purchases).

Because the pending amount is deducted from your bank balance, you can close your bank account and the purchase will be honoured.

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.

Do you need a bank account to sell on eBay?

You don’t need a bank account to sell on eBay. But if you don’t have a bank account, you must provide either a credit card or debit card.

Can I link a bank account to Paypal?

Paypal is a safe and convenient way to pay online without the need to share your financial details. You can send and receive money or accept credit and debit cards as a seller using Paypal.

It’s easy to link your bank account to a Paypal account and start making transactions within minutes.

To start, you first need a Paypal account (it’s free to join). When setting up your Paypal account, you will be prompted to link a credit card or bank account (or both if you wish).

PayPal works without a balance; you can use Paypal to shop or send money when your balance is zero.

When your Paypal balance is zero, Paypal will ask you to choose your preferred payment method at the checkout.

This could be either your linked bank account or credit card. Your bank details can be updated if you change banks or credit cards.

How long does it take to open a bank account?

The length of time it takes to open a bank account varies, depending on whether you want to open it online or in person.

Online

Most banks and credit unions have simple online applications that usually take no more than 10 minutes to fill out. It can be especially fast if you have your identification documents like your driver’s licence and passport handy. Sometimes you will instantly be approved and the bank account opened. However, depending on the financial institution, it may take a day or so to be processed and your account number issued. Your account information and ATM or debit card will then be mailed to you, which usually takes between five to 10 days.

In person

If you decide to go into a branch or office to open a bank account, it may take about half an hour. Make sure you bring your identification documents with you. Also book an appointment if you can, otherwise you might be forced to wait in line. Sometimes your ATM or debit card will be issued on the spot, otherwise you’ll need to wait for one to arrive by mail, which usually takes between five to 10 days.

How do I open a bank account for a baby?

If you’ve just welcome a new baby into the world, congratulations. Opening a bank account for your child can be a wonderful first gift.

Before you can open your child an account, you’ll need to have a birth certificate or passport for your baby.

As the parent or guardian, you’ll also be listed as a joint holder on the account. This means you’ll need to have proof of your identification and address (a driver’s licence, passport, birth certificate or Medicare Card).

Many banks and credit unions offer baby banks accounts. Usually, you can apply online; otherwise you can head into a local branch or office with your documents.

How can I find bank accounts in my name?

To find ‘live’ bank accounts in your name, you’ll have to ask individual lenders, which involves contacting them one by one and proving your identity each time. To find ‘unclaimed’ bank accounts (those that have been inactive for at least seven years), you can use this website.

How do you find a bank account number by name?

For privacy reasons, Australian banks won’t hand out account numbers or other details about their customers. However, if you provide a bank with a BSB and account number, they should be able to confirm if those numbers belong to one of their customers.

Can debt collectors take money out of your bank account?

Many people find themselves struggling to cope with debt at one time or another. In these cases, a debt collector could contact you to demand payment for a debt, to explain the consequences of you failing to pay a debt, or to organise alternative payment arrangements.

If you’re contacted by a debt collector, you may be wondering what their rights are and whether they can take money out of your bank account.

Creditors cannot access money in your bank account unless a court order (also known as a ‘garnishee order’) is made to allow creditors to recover debt by taking money from your bank account or salary.

If this happens, the creditor can take money out of your bank account unless you pay the debt in full or make an alternative payment arrangement such as paying in instalments through the court.

Do you need a bank account to get a credit card?

To get a credit card, you need to show proof of income, which will almost certainly require you to have a bank account.

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.

What do you need to open bank accounts?

Opening a bank account is one of the simplest online tasks you could perform. The hard part is deciding which type of bank account you want to open.

All banking institutions have a website where you hit ‘apply’ on the account of your choice and step through an application in less than 10 minutes.

Here’s a list of information that is generally required for applications.

  • Identification (driver’s licence, passport, proof of age card, proof of citizenship and/or birth certificate)
  • Tax file number (so you don’t get charged the highest tax rate)
  • Address, contact email and phone number

If you decide to open a new account at the branch, make sure you ask beforehand what information you need to take with you, or take all of the above to be safe.