Our Disclosure

The content on this website includes links to our partners and we may receive compensation when you sign up, at no cost to you. This may impact which products or services we write about and where and how they appear on the site. It does not affect the objectivity of our evaluations or reviews. Read our disclosure.

BMO Newcomer Bank Account Offers in 2024


Fact Checked

The Bank of Montreal (BMO) offers several banking products and services to newcomers that include fee waivers and approvals, even if you have a limited Canadian credit history.

For more on newcomer bank accounts, you can also check the welcome offers available at other big banks to see which one best meets your needs.

Read on to learn about the best BMO newcomer offers in 2024.

What is the BMO NewStart Program?

The BMO NewStart Program is designed to make it easier for permanent residents, foreign workers, and international students to access banking services in Canada.

Usually, you would need a healthy credit history before you can get a credit card, but that’s not possible if you have just immigrated to Canada.

As such, banks have programs in place that waive some of the standard credit requirements for newcomers.

These newcomer programs usually also waive the monthly fees on a chequing account for one year.

The Bank of Montreal is one of the largest banks in Canada, with more than 12 million customers across North America. It was established in 1817.

BMO Newcomer Offers

The current newcomer offers by BMO include these accounts:

  • Chequing account
  • Savings account
  • Credit cards
  • Global money transfer
  • Investment
  • Mortgages

BMO Newcomer Chequing Account Offer

Newcomers can open a BMO Performance Plan chequing account and pay no monthly fees for 12 months. This account has a standard monthly fee of $16.95 and includes unlimited transactions.

After the first 12 months, the regular fee applies, but you can continue to pay zero monthly fees if you maintain a daily minimum balance of $4,000.

In addition to one year of no monthly fee banking, newcomers also get one free small safety deposit box for 12 months, a free savings account, and international money transfers with no fee for one year.

And there is currently up to a $350 cash bonus when you sign up and meet the eligibility conditions.

International students can open a no-monthly-fee student bank account.

BMO Newcomer Credit Card Offer

BMO has two no-fee credit cards you can apply for as a newcomer. No credit history is required to qualify.

If you don’t qualify for an unsecured credit card, you can apply for a secured credit card instead.

Secured credit cards require you to provide a security deposit when you open an account.

BMO’s newcomer credit cards are:

Newcomers are not limited to these two cards, and they can apply for other BMO credit cards in the travel, cash back, low-interest, and AIR MILES categories.

How To Open a BMO Newcomer Bank Account

You may need to book an appointment to open a bank account under the BMO NewStart Program, but you can start your application online.

Permanent residents and foreign workers are required to present these documents (as applicable):

  • Canadian Permanent Resident Card, Confirmation of Permanent Residence, or a work permit
  • One piece of government-issued photo ID, e.g. driver’s license or foreign passport International students will need to provide proof of registration at a post-secondary school, a study permit, and one piece of government photo ID.

If you have not yet arrived in Canada, you may be able to open a BMO bank account by completing some forms and mailing them to the bank.

bmo newcomer bank offers

New Immigrant Bank Account Alternatives

Newcomers can save on banking fees by opening accounts at an online bank such as Simplii Financial, Tangerine, and EQ Bank.


KOHO is a reloadable prepaid card account that combines cash back earnings, savings, and spending in one place.

Using the KOHO card, you earn up to 5% cash back at participating retailers, earn 5% interest on your balance if you set up a direct deposit, and get unlimited transactions online and at point-of-sale terminals without paying a fee.

There is also a $20 sign-up bonus when you use our CASHBACK referral code.

Learn about how KOHO works.

Simplii Financial Newcomer Accounts

Simplii Financial’s New to Canada Banking Program includes a no-fee chequing account, no-annual-fee credit cards, international money transfers, savings accounts, and more.

The Simplii Financial No-Fee Chequing Account includes unlimited transactions, free cheques, and free access to 3,400 CIBC ATMs across Canada.

It also does not have a minimum deposit requirement.

You can apply to open an account before arriving in Canada, and for a limited time, new clients are getting a $400 cash bonus.

The Simplii Financial Cash Back Visa Card pays 0.50% to 4% cash back on purchases and has no annual fees.

As a newcomer, you can be approved for a credit limit of up to $10,000 without a credit history. Learn more about it in this review.

EQ Bank

For a high-interest savings account you can pair with your regular chequing account, check out the EQ Bank Personal Account.

This hybrid bank account pays one of the highest savings rates in Canada, and it includes unlimited transactions. It also has no monthly fees or minimum balance.

Learn more about EQ Bank in this review.

BMO Newcomer FAQs

Which bank is best in Canada for new immigrants?

The best traditional banks for newcomers are RBC, TD, CIBC, BMO, and Scotiabank. The best online banks for newcomers to save on fees are Simplii Financial, Tangerine, and EQ Bank.

Which banks give you money for opening an account?

Simplii Financial currently offers a $400 cash bonus when you open a new account.

How do I get $300 or $350 from BMO?

For a limited time, new BMO customers can get a $350 bonus when they open a new BMO Performance or Premium Plan chequing account and meet the eligibility requirements.

What is the number 1 bank in Canada?

Bank of Canada (RBC) is the number 1 bank in Canada based on its market capitalization.

Is BMO a good bank?

Yes, BMO is a good bank and it is the oldest bank in Canada.


Top Promotions this month

Stop paying Fees. Get the best FREE chequing account offer in Canada + $400 cash bonus

Easy $400 cash bonus when you add a direct deposit to your Simplii account.

Unlimited free debits and Interac e-Transfer transactions.

No monthly account or transaction fees.

No monthly or minimum balance is required.

Best no-fee cash back prepaid credit card with up to 5% cashback + $20 bonus

Up to 5% unlimited cashback on purchases and no annual fee*.

Instant $20 sign-up bonus after your first purchase online or in-store.

Guaranteed approval with no income requirement.

Get free unlimited transactions & Transfer + earn interest on your balance.


Gravatar for Enoch Omololu, MSc (Econ)
Enoch Omololu, MSc (Econ)

Enoch Omololu, personal finance expert, author, and founder of Savvy New Canadians, has written about money matters for over 10 years. Enoch has an MSc (Econ) degree in Finance and Investment Management from the University of Aberdeen Business School and has completed the Canadian Securities Course. His expertise has been highlighted in major publications like Forbes, Globe and Mail, Business Insider, CBC News, Toronto Star, Financial Post, CTV News, TD Direct Investing, Canadian Securities Exchange, and many others. Enoch is passionate about helping others win with their finances and recently created a practical investing course for beginners. You can read his full author bio.

About Savvy New Canadians

Savvy New Canadians is one of Canada's top personal finance platforms. Millions of Canadians use our site each year to learn how to save for retirement, invest smartly, maximize rewards, and earn extra cash. We have been featured in prominent finance media, including Forbes, Globe and Mail, Business Insider, CBC, MSN, Wealthsimple, and TD Direct Investing. Learn more about Savvy New Canadians.

Free financial education

Expert advice

Free resources

Detailed guides

Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.