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Published January 8, 2024
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RBC Royal Bank of Canada Review

Royal Bank of Canada, or RBC, is one of Canada’s Big Six banks. It provides in-person and online banking services for individuals, businesses, investors and home buyers.

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Royal Bank of Canada at a glance

RBC was founded in 1864 and became a chartered bank in 1869. RBC is known as one of Canada’s Big Six banks.

  • RBC account options
    Visa and Mastercard credit cards
  • Other RBC services
    Loans and lines of credit
    Wealth management services
    Business accounts and financing

Royal Bank of Canada overview

The Royal Bank of Canada, commonly known as RBC, is one of Canada’s Big Six financial institutions. Launched in 1864 to offer credit to merchants on the Halifax waterfront, it was incorporated in 1869 as the Merchants’ Bank of Halifax and RBC is now a global entity that operates in 29 countries. In addition to offering traditional banking services, like in-person banking, savings accounts and chequing accounts, RBC provides online banking, investment banking, wealth management and direct investing services. It’s also one of Canada’s largest mortgage lenders.

Online banking capabilities at RBC

Even though RBC operates more than 1,100 physical locations, clients can also access the bank’s services through a fairly robust online banking portal. RBC allows users to open and manage accounts online — including RBC-affiliated credit cards, credit lines and investment accounts — make direct payments and conduct business banking.

Is my money safe at RBC?

To ensure your money is protected in the event of the bank’s sudden collapse, RBC is one of more than 80 Canadian financial institutions that insures its customers’ deposits with coverage from the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation, or CDIC.

CDIC insures several types of accounts, including registered retirement savings plans (RRSPs) and tax-free savings accounts (TFSAs), to a maximum of $100,000 each. 

RBC also provides zero liability protection for its credit card customers. If someone illegally uses your card in person or online, you won’t be responsible for paying the charges.

RBC (Royal Bank of Canada)

Find the best RBC credit cards and bank accounts to meet your needs.

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RBC Bank account types

As one of Canada’s biggest banks, RBC offers a wide selection of accounts for you to choose from. Various packages and combinations can help reduce or waive monthly fees.

RBC savings accounts

» MORE: Read our RBC savings account review

RBC chequing accounts

RBC credit card accounts

RBC credit cards include a variety of travel, rewards, cash-back, low-interest, student and business cards, including:

RBC investing accounts

» MORE: Read our RBC RRSP review

Other RBC services

Royal Bank of Canada fees

Banking fees can vary based on the accounts you have and how you use them. Here are some of the common fees you may encounter using RBC’s financial products and services:

Who RBC is best for

Canadians who want to keep all their financial accounts in one place.

RBC casts a wide net in its search for customers, so it has something for almost everyone, especially if they’re willing to pay some banking fees and are satisfied with lower interest rates on savings products. 

There are multiple savings and chequing accounts for individuals to choose from, with some offering low fees and allowing you to earn points through your purchases. There are also products and services, such as the RBC TFSA, RRSP, GICs and other investments designed especially for personal investors, business owners, home buyers and high-net-worth individuals.

Unlike some smaller institutions, RBC attempts to meet the needs of all potential Canadian customers in one place.

Pros and Cons of RBC Bank

There’s plenty to like about RBC, but no bank or credit union is without its drawbacks. Here’s what to consider before you open an account.

Pros of RBC Bank

Cons of RBC Bank

How RBC compares to other big banks

ATMs and branchesAre deposits insured?
RBCATMs: 4,000+
Branches: 1,100+
Yes, by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation.
National Bank of CanadaATMs: 2,200+
Branches: 360+
Yes, by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation.
TD BankATMs: 3,400+
Branches: 1,000+
Yes, by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation.
BMOATMs: 3,200+
Branches: 800+
Yes, by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation.
CIBCATMs: 2,900+
Branches: 1,000+
Yes, by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation.
ScotiabankATMs: 3,500+
Branches: 900+
Yes, by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation.

» MORE: Read our Banking reviews of other Big Banks, credit unions and online-only banks.

RBC bank frequently asked questions

Is the Bank of Canada the same as the Royal Bank of Canada?

No, the Bank of Canada and Royal Bank of Canada are not the same institution. The Bank of Canada is Canada’s central bank. Its main duty is developing and implementing financial policy to keep the country’s economy running smoothly. Royal Bank of Canada, a traditional bank, is a profit-generating business.

What are the Big Six banks in Canada?

Canada’s “Big Six” banks are:

  • Royal Bank of Canada (RBC).
  • Bank of Montreal (BMO).
  • Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotiabank).
  • Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC).
  • National Bank of Canada.
  • Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD Bank).


5 Advantages to Setting Up Multiple Bank Accounts

5 Advantages to Setting Up Multiple Bank Accounts

Splitting up your money into multiple chequing and savings accounts will organize your money and make it easier to reach your financial goals.

Best Tax-Free Savings Account Rates in Canada for 2024

Best Tax-Free Savings Account Rates in Canada for 2024

The best high-interest tax-free savings accounts (TFSAs) have minimal fees and earn high rates of interest

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NerdWallet Canada’s Banking Reviews

We’ve reviewed Big Banks, credit unions and online-only banks — along with some of their most popular products — to help you understand the pros, cons and perks.

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