Australian high-interest savings accounts paying up to 3%

Australian high-interest savings accounts paying up to 3%

The most generous high-interest savings accounts are currently paying about the same interest rates as the most generous term deposits.

AMP’s Bett3r Save account has a maximum rate of 3.00 per cent, with a base rate of 1.50 per cent (see table below). To earn the maximum rate, you must deposit at least $2,000 per month and keep your balance under $100,000.

The RAMS Saver also has a maximum rate of 3.00 per cent, but with a base rate of 1.35 per cent. To earn the maximum rate, you must deposit at least $200 per month, make no withdrawals and keep your balance between $200 and $500,000.

In Australia’s current low-interest environment, the most generous term deposits are paying 2.80 per cent for one year, 3.00 per cent for three years and 3.20 per cent for five years.

UBank is another lender that is currently paying some of the highest interest rates in Australia for savings accounts, with its USaver with Ultra paying a maximum rate of 2.87 per cent.

ME Bank is also offering up to 2.85 per cent with its Online Savings Account.

Teachers Mutual Bank and UniBank are paying up to 2.81 per cent with their high-interest savings accounts, ING and Australian Unity are paying up to 2.80 per cent, and CUA and Coastline Credit Union are paying up to 2.75 per cent.

Lender Product Base rate Max. rate How to get max. rate
AMP Bett3r Save 1.50% 3.00% Deposit $2,000/month; keep balances under $100,000
RAMS Saver 1.35% 3.00% Deposit $200/month; make no withdrawals; keep balance between $200 and $500,000
UBank USaver with Ultra 1.81% 2.87% Deposit $200/month; keep balances under $200,000
ME Bank Online Savings Account 1.30% 2.85% Make one weekly tap-and-go payment with Everyday Transaction Account debit card; keep balances under $250,000
Teachers Mutual Bank Mighty Saver 1.00% 2.81% Deposit $10/month; make no withdrawals
UniBank Mighty Saver 1.00% 2.81% Deposit $10/month; make no withdrawals
Australian Unity Active Saver 1.20% 2.80% Deposit $250/month; make no withdrawals; keep balances under $500,000
ING Savings Maximiser 1.15% 2.80% Deposit $1,000/month; make five monthly payments with Orange Everyday debit card; keep balances under $100,000
CUA eSaver Boost 0.25% 2.75% Deposit $250/month; make no withdrawals; keep balances under $500,000
Coastline Credit Union Bonus Reward Saver 0.05% 2.75% Deposit $20/month; make no withdrawals

Please note that high-interest savings accounts that pay the highest interest rates won’t necessarily be the best savings accounts for each person.

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Learn more about savings accounts

What are the two types of NAB locked savings accounts?

With a locked savings account in NAB, you can earn bonus interest and learn financial discipline. NAB offers two types of locked savings accounts, each with their own terms and conditions.

The NAB Reward Saver account pays a variable base interest rate of 0.05 per cent per annum and a bonus interest of 0.55 per cent. You’re eligible for the bonus if you make a minimum of one deposit on or before the second last banking day and have no withdrawals in the month.

Meanwhile, the NAB iSaver account provides 0.05 per cent as the standard base interest rate and a fixed bonus margin of 0.55 per cent during the first four months from the date of opening the account. You can park your cash in the account and enjoy unlimited monthly transfers between linked daily bank accounts without impacting the interest rate.

What is a savings account?

A savings account is a type of bank account in which you earn interest on the money you deposit. This makes it one of the easiest and safest investment tools.

Can I overdraft my savings account?

A lot of savings accounts won’t let you overdraw. Some will allow this feature but you’ll need to apply first. It’s best to read the fine print and check with your lender whether this is a feature they offer. It can be a helpful addition, but as your lender can charge you a fee as well as interest for going into negative numbers, it’s best to avoid overdrafting when possible.

What is a good interest rate for a savings account?

A good rule of thumb to keep in mind with savings accounts is to look for a rate that is higher than the CPI inflation rate. This number is constantly changing, so check the Reserve Bank of Australia’s page. If you aren’t earning interest above this then the value of your money will go backwards over time.

Who has the highest interest rates for savings accounts?

As banks frequently change their rates, the most accurate way to know who currently has the highest interest rate is to use a savings account comparison tool.

Can you set up direct debits from a savings account?

It’s not usually possible to set up a direct debit from your savings account to cover ongoing expenses or bills, as savings accounts are structured around growing your wealth by earning interest on regular deposits, and discouraging withdrawals.

Some transaction accounts allow you to set up direct debits and also earn interest, though you may not enjoy as much flexibility as a dedicated transaction account, or get as high an interest rate as a dedicated savings account.

How much money should I have in my savings account?

A good rule of thumb when working out a minimum balance for your savings account is to make sure that you’ll earn more in annual interest on your savings than what you’ll be charged in annual fees.

If you’re saving with a specific goal in mind, prepare a budget so the interest you earn on your deposits will help you efficiently reach this goal. Online financial calculators may be helpful here.

Can you have a joint savings account?

Yes. Joint savings accounts can be useful for two or more people wanting to combine their savings to meet shared financial goals, including spouses, flatmates and business partners.

Some joint savings accounts require all parties to sign before they can access the money. While less convenient, this extra security can help encourage all parties to meet their shared financial goals.

Other joint savings accounts allow any of the account holders to access the money. These accounts can be convenient for financially responsible couples that trust one another implicitly. 

How does interest work on savings accounts?

The type of interest savings accounts accrues is called compound interest. Compound interest is interest paid on the initial deposit amount, as well as the accumulated interest on money you have. This is different from simple interest where interest is paid at the end of a specified term. Compound interest allows you to earn interest on interest at a higher frequency. 

Example: John deposits $10,000 into a savings account with an interest rate of 5 per cent that he leaves untouched for 10 years. At the end of the first year he will have $10,512 in savings. After ten years, he will have saved $16,470.

How do I open a savings account?

Opening a savings account is a relatively simple process. If you’ve found an account with a suitable interest rate, you’ll just need to get in contact with your chosen lender via a branch, phone call or hop online to begin the process. 

You may be required to provide:

  • Personal details, including identification (driver’s license, passport etc.)
  • Tax file number
  • Employment details

How to open a savings account for my child?

Some banks and financial institutions allow parents to open a bank account for their child as soon as it is born, and start depositing funds to go towards the child’s future.

Children’s savings accounts generally don’t have fees, and are structured to help develop positive financial habits by limiting withdrawals, encouraging regular deposits, and earning interest on the savings, similarly to standard savings accounts.

What is the interest rate on savings accounts?

As banks frequently change their rates, the most accurate way to look at interest rates on savings accounts is to use a savings accounts comparison tool. When you look at the savings rate check what the maximum and minimum rates are. Often banks will offer you a promotional rate for the first few months which is competitive, but then revert back to a base rate which can sometimes be less than inflation. Ongoing bonus rates are often a safer bet as they will keep rewarding you with the maximum rate, provided you meet their criteria

Can you direct deposit to a savings account?

Yes. You can make one off payments or set up regular direct deposits into a savings account. This can be organised easily through online banking or by making deposits in a branch. Talk to your lender to find out the easiest way for you to set up direct deposits.

Can you set up a savings account online?

Yes. Several large and small banks offer online applications for savings accounts, and there are also online-only financial institutions to consider.

Online-only savings accounts are often less expensive than other savings accounts, though they may not offer the same flexibility, features, or face-to-face service as more traditional savings accounts.