GO2bank Review: Checking and Savings

Green Dot’s GO2bank provides mobile checking and a high savings rate, but it has a monthly fee that many similar accounts don’t charge.
Spencer TierneyOct 14, 2021

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Overall bank rating

GO2bank
  • Checking

  • Savings

  • Banking experience

  • Overdraft fees

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line:

GO2bank is a neobank by Green Dot, a financial technology company with the rare benefit of having its own banking license to provide federal deposit insurance. Like Green Dot’s first neobank, GoBank, GO2bank has a checking account with separate savings subaccounts called vaults. The bank’s key benefits include a 1% annual percentage yield on savings accounts up to a certain balance; access to direct deposits up to two days early; and the ability to deposit cash with a GO2bank debit card or the mobile app at many retail locations. But there are neobanks that earn interest on higher balances and have no monthly fees or overdraft fees on checking accounts.

You can pick up a GO2bank Visa debit card at retailers such as Walmart and activate it online, or open an account directly on the bank’s website. The bank also provides a secured credit card to build credit, with no credit check.

 

Best for: Customers who want a digital banking account with easy ways to handle cash, plan to save up to $5,000 and receive direct deposits from work or as government benefits.

Pros

  • 1.00% APY across all savings vaults.
  • Ability to create up to five vaults, which can divide up savings goals.
  • Large ATM and retail networks for cash withdrawals and cash deposits, respectively.

Cons

  • No transfers from a GO2bank account to external bank accounts.
  • The 1.00% rate applies only to the first $5,000 across all savings vaults, making the maximum you can earn $50 a year.
  • $5 monthly fee if you don’t receive direct deposits through GO2bank.

Full review

GO2bank™ Account

GO2bank™ Account

4.0

NerdWallet rating 
Monthly Fee

$5.00

Waived with eligible direct deposit

GO2bank’s primary account has a monthly fee of $5 that can be waived with at least one direct deposit per month. Although the fee is low compared with traditional banks, similar mobile checking accounts don’t have such a fee. There’s no minimum balance to open the account online. If you get the debit card at a store instead, there’s a purchase fee up to $2.95 and a minimum deposit of $20.

The checking features include withdrawals at over 19,000 fee-free ATMs nationwide and cash deposits at over 90,000 locations of big-brand retailers such as Walmart and CVS. The mobile app can create one-time bar codes for a retail cashier to scan as they accept your cash, making for an easy bridge between cash and digital. Cash deposits aren’t a common feature among neobanks given the nature of being digital-only.

You can receive direct deposits up to two days early (or four days early, in the case of government checks) compared with traditional banks. There's also a limited cash-back program for purchasing online gift cards. There are many ways to add money, but there isn’t yet a way to make a transfer out of a GO2bank account to an external bank account.

The mobile app offers check deposits for free if you don’t mind waiting 10 days; otherwise, to receive funds within minutes, the fee is 1% or 5% of the amount, depending on the type of check. Other fees include $3 for out-of-network ATM withdrawals, up to $4.95 for each cash deposit at a retailer, and a 1.5% fee for online transfers from an external debit card to fund a GO2bank account.

» Learn more: See 18 other neobanks and what they offer

GO2bank™ Savings Account

GO2bank™ Savings Account

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
APY

1.00%

With $0 minimum balance

Stellar rate for a certain sum: GO2bank provides up to five savings subaccounts, or vaults, with no minimum balance requirements. The vaults altogether earn the high rate of 1% APY on balances up to $5,000, paid out quarterly. Any amounts over that don’t earn interest. If you don’t expect to save more than that at GO2bank in the next year, this rate is a good deal. Otherwise, there are high-yield savings accounts that let you earn interest on far higher balances.

Some limits to funds access: You must have the GO2bank primary bank account in order to open one or more vaults, and the only way to move money in or out is through transfers between the primary account and a vault.

Banking experience

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Mobile-focused banking: GO2bank is an all-digital bank, so there are no branches. The mobile app has better than 4-star ratings in app stores, and it has perks like limited cash back when buying select gift cards and the ability to lock and unlock the debit card if lost or stolen.

GO2bank customer support: Phone support is available seven days a week from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. PT. The bank also has live chat on its website for logged-in customers.

What to know about neobanks: Neobanks can be solid options for consumers who prefer online-only banking. Funds deposited in these accounts are usually FDIC-insured through partner banks, which will also typically receive customers’ money if a neobank closes, so customer funds are safe. In rare cases, including GO2bank's, the neobank is officially a bank. Neobank accounts often have low monthly fees and earn strong rates. However, they may lack traditional banking features, including in-person customer service and access to personal or cashier’s checks (often required for large purchases, such as buying a home) or wire transfers. (Learn more about neobanks.) Consider these details before opening an account.

Overdraft fees

3.0

NerdWallet rating 

Low fee but limited coverage: Only customers who receive direct deposits can opt in to overdraft coverage — for $10 to $200, depending on their direct deposit amount. When a purchase would result in a negative balance, the bank can cover up to that amount to let the transaction go through. A customer has a 24-hour grace period to bring the account back up to zero or higher. If they don’t and a balance is overdrawn by more than $10, GO2bank charges $15 for each debit card purchase that makes or keeps an account negative, up to five times per day. An overdrawn balance of $10 or less isn’t charged a fee.

For anyone without overdraft protection, any transaction that would put them in the red gets rejected without a fee. Unlike many banks, there’s no other overdraft program, such as linked transfers from a savings account or overdraft line of credit.

GO2bank™ Account

GO2bank™ Account

4.0

NerdWallet rating 
Monthly Fee

$5.00

Waived with eligible direct deposit

GO2bank’s primary account has a monthly fee of $5 that can be waived with at least one direct deposit per month. Although the fee is low compared with traditional banks, similar mobile checking accounts don’t have such a fee. There’s no minimum balance to open the account online. If you get the debit card at a store instead, there’s a purchase fee up to $2.95 and a minimum deposit of $20.

The checking features include withdrawals at over 19,000 fee-free ATMs nationwide and cash deposits at over 90,000 locations of big-brand retailers such as Walmart and CVS. The mobile app can create one-time bar codes for a retail cashier to scan as they accept your cash, making for an easy bridge between cash and digital. Cash deposits aren’t a common feature among neobanks given the nature of being digital-only.

You can receive direct deposits up to two days early (or four days early, in the case of government checks) compared with traditional banks. There's also a limited cash-back program for purchasing online gift cards. There are many ways to add money, but there isn’t yet a way to make a transfer out of a GO2bank account to an external bank account.

The mobile app offers check deposits for free if you don’t mind waiting 10 days; otherwise, to receive funds within minutes, the fee is 1% or 5% of the amount, depending on the type of check. Other fees include $3 for out-of-network ATM withdrawals, up to $4.95 for each cash deposit at a retailer, and a 1.5% fee for online transfers from an external debit card to fund a GO2bank account.

» Learn more: See 18 other neobanks and what they offer

How does GO2bank compare?

Deposits are FDIC Insured

Federally insured by the NCUA

NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
Monthly Fee

$0

Monthly Fee

$0

Monthly Fee

$0

APY

N/A

APY

0.10%

With $2,500 minimum balance

APY

0.25%

With $0 minimum balance

Bonus

N/A

Bonus

N/A

Bonus

N/A

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.