BEST OF

7 Best Rewards Checking Accounts

Chanelle BessetteJan 27, 2020

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Rewards usually are associated with credit cards, but some checking accounts have them, too. Perks include high interest rates, cash back and one-time sign-up bonuses.

Why trust NerdWallet: Our writers and editors follow strict editorial guidelines to ensure fairness and accuracy in our coverage to help you choose the financial accounts that work best for you. See our criteria for evaluating banks and credit unions.

Here’s a list of our favorite rewards checking accounts.

Summary of Best Rewards Checking Accounts

Our pick for

Sign-Up Bonus

Chase Total Checking®
Learn more

at Chase, Member FDIC

Chase Total Checking®

4.0

NerdWallet rating 
Chase Total Checking®

Monthly Fee

$12.00

Waived with direct deposit or $1,500 minimum balance

APY

N/A

Bonus

$225

Requirements to qualify

Learn more

at Chase, Member FDIC


Bonus

$225
Requirements to qualify

Why we like it

New Chase checking customers who open a Chase Total Checking® account and set up direct deposit can earn a sign-up bonus of $225 (expires 10/18/2021). The $12 monthly maintenance fee can be avoided by keeping a minimum balance of $1,500, signing up for monthly direct deposits of at least $500, or having an average beginning day balance of at least $5,000 across linked qualifying accounts and investments.

Chase has more than 4,700 branches and more than 16,000 ATMs, as well as a range of checking and savings accounts. That makes it ideal for people looking to join a national bank.

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Our pick for

Cash-Back Rewards

LendingClub Rewards Checking
Learn more

at LendingClub Bank, Member FDIC

LendingClub Rewards Checking

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
LendingClub Rewards Checking

Monthly Fee

$0

APY

0.10%

With $2,500 minimum balance

Bonus

N/A
Learn more

at LendingClub Bank, Member FDIC


Bonus

N/A

Why we like it

LendingClub Rewards Checking has a cash back feature that allows customers to earn unlimited 1% cash back on signature-based debit card transactions in stores and online. In stores, a customer must select “credit” instead of “debit” for the purchase to qualify.

To get the cash back, customers must receive at least $2,500 in direct deposit from their employer or keep an average of $2,500 or more in their Rewards Checking account monthly.

LendingClub Rewards Checking also offers interest. Balances from $2,500 to $99,999 earn 0.10%, and balances of $100,000 or more earn 0.15%. The account has no monthly maintenance fee or minimum balance requirement after the $100 deposit required to open the account.

Customers get unlimited automatic ATM fee reimbursements worldwide (though an international exchange fee may still apply), and they can also get free ATM access at MoneyPass and SUM-branded ATMs.

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Our pick for

Interest Checking Rate for Banks

Axos Bank® Rewards Checking
Learn more

at Axos Bank®, Member FDIC

Axos Bank® Rewards Checking

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Axos Bank® Rewards Checking

Monthly Fee

$0

APY

1.00%

With $0 minimum balance

Bonus

N/A
Learn more

at Axos Bank®, Member FDIC


Bonus

N/A

Why we like it

Axos Bank’s Rewards Checking account has no monthly fee or minimum balance requirements. It reimburses an unlimited number of domestic ATM fees.

But the account’s biggest perk is its annual percentage yield, or APY, of up to 1.00% on balances up to $50,000. To get the full rate, you will need to meet a few requirements. First, you need at least $1,500 in monthly direct deposits. That earns 0.40%. Once you meet that requirement, you can earn an additional 0.30% if you make 10 debit card purchases (minimum of $3 per transaction) or sign up for the Account Aggregation/Personal Finance Manager tool. In addition, having an average daily balance of $2,500 in a managed investment portfolio, an average daily balance of $2,500 in a self-directed portfolio and making a monthly Axos consumer loan payment from Rewards Checking earns another 0.10% each.

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Our pick for

Interest Checking Rate for Credit Unions

Consumers Credit Union Free Rewards Checking
Learn more

at Consumers Credit Union, Federally insured by the NCUA

Consumers Credit Union Free Rewards Checking

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Consumers Credit Union Free Rewards Checking

Monthly Fee

$0

APY

2.09%

With $0 minimum balance

Bonus

N/A
Learn more

at Consumers Credit Union, Federally insured by the NCUA


Bonus

N/A

Why we like it

Consumers Credit Union’s Free Rewards Checking offers easy-to-join nationwide membership, a big ATM network and no monthly fees or minimum balances, but the most impressive feature is the APY: up to 4.09%.

The rate breaks down into three separate tiers — 2.09%, 3.09% and 4.09% — with more monthly requirements for the higher two. To achieve the first tier on balances of up to $10,000, you need to do three things: Complete at least 12 monthly debit card purchases, have online transactions (direct deposits, ACH transfers or mobile check deposits) to the account worth at least $500 each month, and enroll in electronic documents. For the month of May 2020, the minimum number of debit card purchases required has dropped from 12 to 6.

The second tier, 3.09%, applies to balances of up to $10,000 and requires the activities above as well as making at least $500 in purchases with a Consumers Credit Union credit card. The highest tier, 4.09%, is for balances of up to $10,000 and requires the activities from the first tier along with $1,000 in credit card purchases. Not meeting the requirements drops your rate down to a much lower APY.

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Our picks for

Cash-Back Rewards

Discover Bank Cashback Debit
Learn more

at Discover Bank, Member FDIC

Discover Bank Cashback Debit

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Discover Bank Cashback Debit

Monthly Fee

$0

APY

N/A

Bonus

N/A
Learn more

at Discover Bank, Member FDIC


Bonus

N/A

Why we like it

You can get 1% cash back on up to $3,000 in qualifying debit card purchases each month on Discover’s one and only checking account.

Discover gives access to over 60,000 free ATMs and doesn’t charge a monthly fee or have balance requirements.

Cashback Debit details from Discover:

“ATM transactions, the purchase of money orders or other cash equivalents, cash over portions of point-of-sale transactions, peer-to-peer (P2P) payments (such as Apple Pay Cash), and loan payments or account funding made with your debit card are not eligible for cash back rewards. In addition, purchases made using third-party payment accounts (services such as Venmo® and PayPal™, which also provide P2P payments) may not be eligible for cash back rewards. Apple, the Apple logo and Apple Pay are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries."

See Discover's website for more details.

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Axos Bank® CashBack Checking

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Axos Bank® CashBack Checking

Monthly Fee

$0

APY

1.00%

Bonus

N/A

Bonus

N/A

Why we like it

Axos Bank's CashBack Checking offers up to 1% cash back to earn a possible $2,000 monthly. To get the full 1%, you must maintain a daily balance of at least $1,500, or the rate drops to 0.50%. The checking account also has unlimited domestic ATM reimbursements and no monthly fees.

This account restricts eligible debit transactions to purchases that require a signature. Transactions also can’t be purchases at supermarkets, wholesale stores, discount stores or money transfer or financial institutions, plus a couple of others.

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Our pick for

Interest Checking Rate for Banks

Redneck Bank Rewards Checkin' Account

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Redneck Bank Rewards Checkin' Account

Monthly Fee

$0

APY

0.45%

With $0 minimum balance

Bonus

N/A

Bonus

N/A

Why we like it

Despite its offbeat marketing, Redneck Bank’s high rates are legit. The online division of Oklahoma-based All America Bank offers a 0.45% APY on up to $10,000, which means you could rake in $225 in interest in one year. Amounts above $10,000 earn 0.50% APY. You must make 10 debit card purchases per month and receive e-statements to earn the rates. Otherwise, the APY drops to 0.05%. The account has a minimum opening deposit requirement of $500, and no monthly fees or minimum balance requirements.

Read Full Review

» Want to explore one-time bonuses? Browse our monthly roundup of best bank account bonuses Chasing the best rewards and sign-up bonuses in the world can’t make up for having a checking account that lacks features you need or that charges you high fees to access your money. But it’s worth looking for a financial institution that offers you a little extra incentive to bank with it.

Last updated on January 27, 2020

You may also like these

People often identify opening a savings account as their next money move.

Chase Savings℠

3.5

NerdWallet rating 
Chase Savings℠

APY

0.01%
With $0 minimum balance

Bonus

N/A

American Express® High Yield Savings Account

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
American Express® High Yield Savings Account

APY

0.40%
With $1 minimum balance

Bonus

N/A

at American Express National Bank, Member FDIC

Marcus by Goldman Sachs Online Savings Account

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Marcus by Goldman Sachs Online Savings Account

APY

0.50%
With $0 minimum balance

Bonus

N/A

at Marcus by Goldman Sachs, Member FDIC

Methodology

We took a close look at over 70 financial institutions, including the largest U.S. banks based on assets, debit card volume, Internet search traffic and other factors; the nation’s largest credit unions, based on deposits as well as broad-based membership requirements; and other notable and/or emerging players in the industry. We rated them on criteria including annual percentage yields, minimum balances, fees, digital experience and more.

Financial institutions surveyed include: Alaska USA Federal Credit Union, Alliant Credit Union, Ally Bank, America First Credit Union, American Express National Bank, Associated Bank, Axos Bank, Bank5 Connect, Bank7, Bank of America, Bank of the West, Barclays, BB&T, BBVA, BMO Harris, Boeing Employees Credit Union, Capital One 360, Charles Schwab Bank, Chase, Chime, CIBC U.S., CIT Bank, Citibank, Citizens Access, Citizens Bank, Comenity Bank, Comerica Bank, Commerce Bank, Connexus Credit Union, Consumers Credit Union, Discover Bank, E*TRADE Bank, Fifth Third Bank, First Foundation Bank, First National Bank, First Tech Federal Credit Union, Flagstar Bank, FNBO Direct, GoBank, Golden 1 Credit Union, Goldman Sachs Bank USA, HSBC Bank, Huntington Bank, KeyBank, LendingClub, Live Oak Bank, M&T Bank, Nationwide Bank, Navy Federal Credit Union, NBKC Bank, Pentagon Federal Credit Union, PNC, Popular Direct, PurePoint Financial, Redneck Bank, Regions Bank, Salem Five Direct, Sallie Mae Bank, Santander Bank, SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union, Security Service Federal Credit Union, Service Credit Union, State Employees' Credit Union of North Carolina, Suncoast Credit Union, SunTrust Bank, Synchrony Bank, TAB Bank, TCF Bank, TD Bank, TIAA Bank, U.S. Bank, UFB Direct, Union Bank, USAA, Varo, Vio Bank, Wells Fargo, Woodforest National Bank and Zions Bank.

To recap our selections...

NerdWallet's Best Rewards Checking Accounts