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The Best Bank in Australia

Which is the best bank in Australia? It may not even be a bank.

What makes a bank ‘the best bank’? Is it the number of products, low rates, a regional touch or all of these things combined. Best is such a subjective term, it all depends on what’s important to you. Think about these points when you’re evaluating banks side by side.

Banks versus nonbanks

We use bank as an umbrella term for financial institutions that offer banking products. There are hundreds of customer owned banking institutions operating in regional communities and big cities all over Australia. There are credit unions, mutual societies, friendly societies, cooperatives to think about as well as small local banks, foreign banks and the Big Four.

Rates last updated November 21st, 2017
$
Maximum Variable Rate p.a. Standard Variable Rate p.a. Bonus Interest p.a. Fees Min Bal / Min Deposit Monthly Account Fee
Easy Street Easy Savings
Earn an ongoing interest rate of 2.00%. Available on the entire balance.
2.00% 2.00% 0.00% $0 $0 / $2 More
Easy Street Bonus Saver Account
Ongoing, variable when you deposit 50+ each month and make no withdrawals. Available on balances up to $5,000,000.
2.65% 0.01% 2.64% $0 $0 / $2 More
Community First Bonus Saver
Ongoing, variable 2.30% p.a. when you deposit $20+ each month and make no withdrawals. Available on the entire balance.
2.30% 0.10% 2.20% $0 $0 / $0 More
Community First Christmas Cracker
Ongoing, variable 1.50% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
1.50% 1.50% 0.00% $0 $0 / $0 More
Community First Money Market Account
Ongoing, variable 1.25% p.a. Available on balance of $100,000 and over.
1.25% 1.25% 0.00% $0 $0 / $5,000 More
CUA Youth eSaver Account
Ongoing, variable 4.00% p.a. Available on balances up to $5,000.
4.00% 4.00% 0.00% $0 $1 / $1 More
IMB Reward Saver Account
Introductory rate of 2.20% p.a. for the first 4 months when you deposit $50+ each month and make no withdrawals per month. Available on balance of $5,000 or higher.
2.20% 1.40% 0.80% $0 $5,000 / $0 More
IMB DIY Super
Introductory rate of 2.15% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 1.40% p.a. Available on balance $5,000 and over.
2.15% 1.40% 0.75% $0 $5,000 / $1 More
Greater Bank Bonus Saver
Ongoing, variable 2.00% p.a. when you deposit $1+ each month. Available on the entire balance.
2.00% 2.00% 0.00% $0 $1 / $1 More
Rates last updated November 21st, 2017
$
Monthly Account Fee Debit Card Access ATM Withdrawal Fee Fee Free Deposit p.m. Details
NAB Classic Banking
$0 monthly account fees.
Tap and pay with your NAB Visa Debit card, NAB Pay for Android or NAB PayTag for iPhone.
Visa $0 $0 $0 account keeping fees with no deposit conditions. Unlimited free withdrawals at NAB and rediATMs. Go to site More
ING Orange Everyday Account
$75 cash bonus & Apple Pay available.
Get a competitive ongoing variable rate when linked with an ING Savings Maximiser.
Visa $0 $1,000 ING charges no ATM withdrawal fees and offers a rebate on any third-party ATM fees and international transaction fees when you deposit $1,000 (and from 1 March 2018 make 5+ card purchases a month). Go to site More
Bankwest Qantas Transaction Account
Earn Qantas Points on eligible purchases and on your account balance.
Conditions apply.
Mastercard $0 $2,000 $0 account keeping fees when you deposit at least $2,000 into your account each month. Otherwise, a $6 monthly fee applies. Unlimited Free withdrawals at Bankwest and CommBank ATMs in Australia. Go to site More
HSBC Day to Day Transaction Account
Your Visa debit card unlocks special privileges worldwide with the HSBC home&Away Privilege Program.
Visa $0 $0 $0 account keeping fees. Unlimited free withdrawals at over 3,000 HSBC, Westpac, St.George, Bank of Melbourne and BankSA ATMs. Go to site More
Bankwest Easy Transaction Account
No monthly account fees when you deposit at least $2,000 per month (e.g. salary). Plus save on ATM fees at major banks such as ANZ, Westpac, NAB, St.George and Commonwealth Bank.
Mastercard $0 $2,000 $0 account keeping fees if you deposit at least $2,000 per month. Otherwise, a $6 monthly fee applies. Unlimited free withdrawals at CommBank, NAB, ANZ, Westpac, St.George, Bank of Melbourne and BankSA ATMs. Go to site More
ANZ Access Advantage
Apple Pay, Android Pay & ANZ Mobile Pay.
Take advantage of Apple Pay by linking your ANZ Visa Debit card to an eligible iPhone and seamlessly pay for purchases with your phone.
Visa $0 $2,000 $0 account keeping fees if you deposit at least $2,000 per month. Otherwise, a $5 monthly fee applies. Unlimited free withdrawals at ANZ ATMs. Go to site More
Westpac Choice
$0 ATM withdrawal fee at 50,000+ ATMs globally.
Via Westpac's Global ATM Alliance. Get Cash without your debit card (conditions apply).
Mastercard $0 $2,000 $0 account keeping fees if you deposit at least $2,000 per month. Otherwise, a $5 monthly fee applies. Unlimited free withdrawals at St.George, Westpac, Bank of Melbourne and BankSA ATMs. Go to site More
St.George Complete Freedom Account
Waived account keeping fees when minimum deposit is met with no minimum balance.
Visa $0 $2,000 $0 account keeping fees if you deposit at least $2,000 per month. Otherwise, a $5 fee applies. Unlimited free withdrawals at St.George, Westpac and BankSA ATMs. Go to site More
Rates last updated November 21st, 2017
$
Maximum Variable Rate p.a. Standard Variable Rate p.a. Bonus Interest p.a. Fees Min Bal / Min Deposit Monthly Account Fee
ANZ Online Saver
Introductory rate of 2.55% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to 0.80% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
2.55% 0.80% 1.75% $0 $0 / $0 Go to site More
ING Savings Maximiser
Ongoing, variable 2.80% p.a. when you link to an ING Orange Everyday bank account and deposit $1,000+ each month (and from 1 March 2018 make 5+ card purchases a month). Available on balances up to $100,000.
2.80% 1.35% 1.45% $0 $0 / $0 Go to site More
Westpac eSaver
Introductory rate of 2.51% p.a. for 5 months, reverting to a rate of 1.00% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
2.51% 1.00% 1.51% $0 $0 / $0 Go to site More
HSBC Serious Saver
Introductory rate of 3.00% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 1.60% p.a. Available on balances below $1,000,000.
3.00% 1.60% 1.40% $0 $0 / $0 Go to site More
ANZ Progress Saver
Ongoing, variable 1.81% p.a. when you deposit $10+ each month and make no withdrawals. Available on the entire balance.
1.81% 0.01% 1.80% $0 $10 / $10 Go to site More
Bank of Melbourne Incentive Saver
Ongoing, variable 2.00% p.a. when you make at least one deposit and no withdrawals each month. Available on the entire balance.
2.00% 0.80% 1.20% $0 $1 / $1 Go to site More
Westpac Reward Saver
Ongoing, variable 1.50% p.a. when you deposit at least $50 and make no withdrawals each month. Available on the entire balance.
1.50% 0.01% 1.49% $0 $0 / $0 Go to site More
HSBC Flexi Saver Account
Ongoing, variable 2.50% p.a. when you deposit $300+ each month (other conditions apply). Available on balances up to $5,000,000.
2.50% 1.25% 1.25% $0 $0 / $0 Go to site More
Bankwest Hero Saver
Ongoing, variable 2.60% p.a. rate when you deposit at least $200 each month and make no withdrawals. Available on balances up to $250,000.
2.60% 0.01% 2.59% $0 $0 / $0 Go to site More
St.George Maxi Saver
Introductory rate of 2.60% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to a rate of 0.80% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
2.60% 0.80% 1.80% $0 $1 / $1 Go to site More
Bank of Melbourne Maxi Saver
Introductory rate of 2.60% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to 0.80% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
2.60% 0.80% 1.80% $0 $0 / $0 Go to site More
BankSA Maxi Saver
Introductory rate of 2.60% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to a rate of 0.80% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
2.60% 0.80% 1.80% $0 $1 / $1 Go to site More
Rates last updated November 21st, 2017
$
Maximum Variable Rate p.a. Standard Variable Rate p.a. Bonus Interest p.a. Fees Min Bal / Min Deposit Monthly Account Fee
Easy Street Easy Savings
Earn an ongoing interest rate of 2.00%. Available on the entire balance.
2.00% 2.00% 0.00% $0 $0 / $2 More
Easy Street Bonus Saver Account
Ongoing, variable when you deposit 50+ each month and make no withdrawals. Available on balances up to $5,000,000.
2.65% 0.01% 2.64% $0 $0 / $2 More
Community First Bonus Saver
Ongoing, variable 2.30% p.a. when you deposit $20+ each month and make no withdrawals. Available on the entire balance.
2.30% 0.10% 2.20% $0 $0 / $0 More
Community First Christmas Cracker
Ongoing, variable 1.50% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
1.50% 1.50% 0.00% $0 $0 / $0 More
Community First Money Market Account
Ongoing, variable 1.25% p.a. Available on balance of $100,000 and over.
1.25% 1.25% 0.00% $0 $0 / $5,000 More
CUA Youth eSaver Account
Ongoing, variable 4.00% p.a. Available on balances up to $5,000.
4.00% 4.00% 0.00% $0 $1 / $1 More
IMB Reward Saver Account
Introductory rate of 2.20% p.a. for the first 4 months when you deposit $50+ each month and make no withdrawals per month. Available on balance of $5,000 or higher.
2.20% 1.40% 0.80% $0 $5,000 / $0 More
IMB DIY Super
Introductory rate of 2.15% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 1.40% p.a. Available on balance $5,000 and over.
2.15% 1.40% 0.75% $0 $5,000 / $1 More
Greater Bank Bonus Saver
Ongoing, variable 2.00% p.a. when you deposit $1+ each month. Available on the entire balance.
2.00% 2.00% 0.00% $0 $1 / $1 More
Rates last updated November 21st, 2017
$
Maximum Variable Rate p.a. Standard Variable Rate p.a. Bonus Interest p.a. Fees Min Bal / Min Deposit Monthly Account Fee
ANZ Progress Saver
Ongoing, variable 1.81% p.a. when you deposit $10+ each month and make no withdrawals. Available on the entire balance.
1.81% 0.01% 1.80% $0 $10 / $10 Go to site More
Westpac Reward Saver
Ongoing, variable 1.50% p.a. when you deposit at least $50 and make no withdrawals each month. Available on the entire balance.
1.50% 0.01% 1.49% $0 $0 / $0 Go to site More
ANZ Online Saver
Introductory rate of 2.55% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to 0.80% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
2.55% 0.80% 1.75% $0 $0 / $0 Go to site More
Westpac eSaver
Introductory rate of 2.51% p.a. for 5 months, reverting to a rate of 1.00% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
2.51% 1.00% 1.51% $0 $0 / $0 Go to site More
Commonwealth Bank NetBank Saver
Introductory rate of 2.55% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to a rate of 1.00% p.a. Available on balances up to $5,000,000.
2.55% 1.00% 1.55% $0 $1 / $1 More
Commonwealth Bank GoalSaver Account
Ongoing, variable 2.50% p.a. rate when you deposit at least $200 p/m with no withdrawals. Available on balances up to $100,000.
2.50% 0.01% 2.49% $0 $0 / $0 More

What are the pros and cons of banks

Pros

  • Mainstream banks have more money to develop online banking facilities.
  • Large choice of banking products and financial services.
  • Large branch and ATM presence.

Cons

  • Fees can be higher what’s charged to members of community banks.
  • Bank customers are customers. Members of community banking institutions own a part of the bank and have a say about how the organisation is run.

What are the pros and cons to customer-owned banking?

Pros

  • Members benefit from bank profits through lower rates and fees. Customer owned banks can offer lower rates than big banking institutions.

Cons

  • Limited choice of products.
  • Limited branch access.
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There’s no loyalty in banking, financial institutions have different strengths

Some banks offer great rates on your deposit, non-banks credit cards are often market leading and online only mortgage lenders can give you a cheap loan, the point is to remember to shop around to get the best deal. Don’t be afraid to use the services of a number of different institutions for your banking and personal finance needs. A little extra time using a comparison service before you apply for a financial product can save you money in fees and interest.

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What do you want as a customer?

Ask yourself what you want as a customer to find yourself the best bank.

  • A good rate. Customer owned banking institutions can offer better rates and fees than big banks. Every customer is a part owner and profits benefit members through better rates and lower fees.
  • Lot of products. Are you looking for a bank that can offer a wide mix of products such as savings accounts, platinum and rewards credit cards, home loan and personal loan products, or do you want a financial institution that offers fewer products at a lower cost.

Large institutions like the Big Four Australian banks offer products and services that suit a number of different demographics; whereas credit unions and mutuals have fewer products packed with benefits. In some cases it can be cost effective to show customer loyalty. For example, the Commonwealth Bank have a credit card annual fee waiver offer for existing customers.

  • A superior online experience. When was the last time you actually went to a bank branch, and what was it for? You can open a bank account online with little, if any, face to face interaction with another person. The institution’s investment in online banking, while not a deal breaker — yet — is becoming increasingly important.
  • Decent customer service. Excellent customer service is expected when you visit a branch at any financial institution, but how does the level of service extend to the institution’s call centre team. The Big Four bank call centre staff are based in Australia, international banks have offshore representatives. Some customer owned banks may refer your call to a third party if it’s outside of business hours.
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How do I compare the best banks in Australia?

Here are a few ways you can compare different banks and financial institutions. Ask yourself:

  • Do they charge monthly fees? Banks and fees and almost synonymous. There are institutions that make low or no fees a point of difference. Online lenders don’t have the overheads of a bricks and mortar bank so they can pass the savings onto consumers.
  • How big is it's ATM network? How many places can you withdraw your money for free? Banks and nonbanks have different partnerships and arrangements with other financial institutions. For example, some smaller financial institutions have agreements with rediATM, which is a third party ATM operator in Australia, whereas banks operate their own ATM network, for example St.George bank customers can use Westpac ATMs because St.George is part of the Westpac banking group.
  • How superior is their online service? Face to face banking is becoming less common. For example, you can apply for a credit card, make payments and repayments, apply for a credit limit increase or decrease just using the internet. If this is how you do your banking, institutions with an enhanced online experience may appeal to you.
  • What other products does the financial institution offer? It can be both convenient and cost effective to hold your loan accounts, everyday banking and savings accounts with the same financial provider. As well as getting a few points off your loan rates and discounted annual fees for credit cards, you can also make instantaneous transfers between accounts.

If you’re not happy with your bank, what’s stopping you from making the switch? Whether it’s monthly fees, transaction fees or credit card or mortgage interest, it’s easier than ever to switch banks get the best deal.

Shirley Liu

Shirley is finder.com.au's publisher for banking and investments. She has completed a Masters in Commerce (Finance) and is the author of hundreds of articles. She is passionate about helping Aussies make an informed decision, save money and find the best deal for their needs.

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2 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    October 12, 2017

    Hi again Finder team,
    I don’t know if you remember me but I have been using your Q&A system as well as your comparing system for the last month or two, I would like to say thank you for your time and effort.
    Okay question time.
    Q.. what True security do I have with an online banks compare to the big 4′s from cyber attacks??
    Q.. If the internet is down for some reason let’s say how would I get my money??

    • Staff
      LiezlOctober 12, 2017Staff

      Hi Andrew,

      Thank you for frequenting finder and for these interesting questions.

      While we cannot comment nor compare the reliability of the banking institutions’ security systems, generally banks have their own security measures in place to protect you against fraudulent activity online and offer some type of Security Guarantee. As part of the Guarantee, the customer will be entitled to compensation for losses he has incurred if the bank has failed to take proper care of the customer’s personal information, due to a cyber-attack. It’s important to read up on the measures as well as term and conditions your bank takes to protect your funds and your identity when banking online.

      In the event of internet blackout, you can visit your bank and withdraw your money over the counter. You might need to visit the bank’s branch where you opened your account in order to do the transaction. You may want to ask this question to your bank so you’ll know what other options there are in case of such event.

      I hope this has helped.

      Cheers,
      Liezl

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