Editorial Review

Citibank Review: Checking, Savings and CDs

Citibank offers many of the perks of a big bank, but with fewer branches than its peers — and has the typical low rates.

Spencer TierneyMay 15, 2020

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Overall bank rating

Citibank
  • Savings

    Savings

  • Checking

    Checking

  • CD rates

    CD rates

  • Banking experience

    Banking experience

  • Overdraft fees

    Overdraft fees

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line: Citibank has many perks you can expect from a big national bank, including a wide range of product offerings and a massive ATM network, but it has fewer branches than some of its peers like Wells Fargo and Bank of America. It also offers low rates, but those are somewhat offset by a solid sign-up bonus.

Pros

  • Offers sign-up bonuses.

  • Strong online and mobile features, including budgeting and many customer service options.

  • 60,000+ fee-free ATMs.

  • 1,800 overseas branches.

Cons

  • Low savings rates; better rates available elsewhere.

  • Balance of at least $500 required in basic savings account to waive monthly fee, more than some competitors require.

  • U.S. branches (about 700) are fewer than similar-sized peers.

Full review

Citibank Citi Savings

Citibank Citi Savings

3.0

NerdWallet rating 
APY

0.04%

With $0 minimum balance

Citibank’s basic savings account will let you hold onto your money, but its rates are generally low. It's worth a look, however, if you can qualify for one of the bonuses. (Details in our best bank bonuses roundup.)

But you’ll find better rates — often above 1.00% — at online-only banks or credit unions.

» Want to see more options? Check out NerdWallet’s best savings accounts.

Citibank Simple Checking

Citibank Simple Checking

4.0

NerdWallet rating 
Monthly Fee

$12.00

Waived with $1500 minimum balance

Citibank's various checking accounts generally come in combination packages with savings accounts, which have many fees or transaction requirements. But if you qualify for a sign-up bonus, and meet requirements to waive the fee, the account could be worth a look.

The checking account in the basic banking package has the best balance of options to avoid the monthly fee and have access to services such as checks.

Citibank CD

Citibank CD

1.5

NerdWallet rating 
APY

0.25%

Minimum Deposit

$1,000

Citibank’s CD rates are a bit higher than those of other national banks, but online banks and local credit unions can offer better rates.

» Find high yields with our list of best CD rates for the month.

Banking experience

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Users can contact the bank 24 hours a day, and its channels include phone, live chat and Twitter. Branches are plentiful in New York and California but less so in other states.

Citibank’s online and mobile tools are strong, offering customers secure access to convenient financial features. For example, you can link Citi and non-Citi accounts so you can keep track of where your money is going. The tools also help with budgeting and goal-setting.

Overdraft fees

2.5

NerdWallet rating 

If you’re a Citi customer, keep your eyes fixed on your checking account. The bank charges an overdraft fee of $34 up to four times per day, making neglect of monitoring balances expensive. One Citibank checking account waives overdraft fees, but you have to give up checks.

If you choose to transfer money from another Citi account to cover an overdraft, it’s less costly, at $10 a day — or it’s waived for some checking accounts — but you’re essentially paying to cover a purchase with your own money.

Citibank Citi Savings

Citibank Citi Savings

3.0

NerdWallet rating 
APY

0.04%

With $0 minimum balance

Citibank’s basic savings account will let you hold onto your money, but its rates are generally low. It's worth a look, however, if you can qualify for one of the bonuses. (Details in our best bank bonuses roundup.)

But you’ll find better rates — often above 1.00% — at online-only banks or credit unions.

» Want to see more options? Check out NerdWallet’s best savings accounts.

How does Citibank compare?

RATING METHODOLOGY

NerdWallet’s overall ratings for banks and credit unions are weighted averages of several categories: checking, savings, certificates of deposit or credit union share certificates, banking experience and overdraft fees. Factors we consider, depending on the category, include rates and fees, ATM and branch access, account features and limits, user-facing technology, customer service and innovation. The stars represent ratings from poor (one star) to excellent (five stars). Ratings are rounded to the nearest half-star.