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RBC No Fee Chequing Accounts and Alternatives in 2023

RBC offers several chequing accounts with varying monthly fees depending on the number of debit transactions and perks included in each package.

While most RBC accounts charge monthly fees, you can get a no-fee RBC chequing account through rebates for students, seniors, and the Value Program.

RBC’s newcomer program also offers no-monthly-fee banking for one year to eligible newcomers to Canada.

This guide covers how to avoid paying fees on an RBC chequing account and alternative free chequing accounts.

Best RBC No Fee Chequing Accounts in Canada

After applying rebates, you can get the following RBC chequing accounts and pay $0 in monthly fees:

  • RBC Student Chequing Account
  • RBC Day to Day Banking
  • RBC Advantage Banking

The RBC student rebate waives the $11.95 monthly fee on the RBC Advantage Account.

RBC senior rebate offers a $4 discount on RBC Day to Day Banking, RBC Advantage Banking, and RBC Signature No Limit Banking. For the RBC VIP Banking package, seniors get a $7.50 discount.

The Value Program offers up to an $11.95 monthly discount depending on how many RBC products you have.

RBC Student Chequing Account

Also called RBC Advantage Banking for Students, this account has no monthly fees and includes unlimited debit transactions and Interac e-Transfers (999/month).

Accountholders get up to a $48 rebate on the annual fee for an RBC credit card, and they earn at least 1 Avion point per $10 spent when enrolled in the Value Program.

This account also includes 1 free chequebook, and 1 NSF fee is rebated annually.

Service fees apply to some transactions, including $45 for NSF transactions (after the first free one), $5/month for overdraft protection plus interest if used, $9.95 per bank draft, and up to $5 per transaction when using PLUS System ATMs.

Here are other student chequing accounts that have no monthly fees.

RBC Day to Day Banking

This account has a $4 monthly fee and includes 12 debit transactions each month. Additional transactions cost $1.25 each.

Other standard service fees apply to ATM transactions, cross-border debits, overdraft protection, safe deposit boxes, cheques, and bank drafts.

Seniors get a $4 fee rebate and do not pay the monthly fee. Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP) recipients also get this rebate.

Here are some other senior bank accounts that offer rebates.

If you have two other RBC products, such as a credit card and investment account, the $4 monthly fee is rebated through the Value Program.

RBC Advantage Banking

RBC Advantage Banking costs $11.95 monthly and includes unlimited debit and Interac e-Transfer (up to 999 e-Transfer) monthly.

Newcomers pay $0 monthly for one year if they arrived in Canada within the last 5 years.

Seniors get a $4 discount and pay a $7.95 monthly fee.

Accountholders with two other RBC products (e.g. credit card, investments, or mortgage) qualify for a $6 rebate and pay $5.95 monthly.

Those with three or more other products qualify for a full $11.95 fee rebate and pay $0 monthly.

How To Avoid RBC Monthly Chequing Account Fees

Unlike Scotiabank, BMO, CIBC and TD, RBC does not waive chequing account fees based on your minimum balance.

To waive monthly fees, you can apply a senior, student, or newcomer rebate, or lower your fees using the Value Program.

RBC Value Program

The Value Program is part of RBC Vantage, RBC’s rewards program that includes earning Avion points on everyday purchases and saving on gas at Petro-Canada.

Through the program, you save on bank fees by having multiple accounts and products with the bank. It was previously called the MultiProduct Rebate.

Eligible products include:

  • Personal credit cards
  • Personal investments, such as Guaranteed Investment Certificates (GICs) or RBC mutual funds, or an RBC Direct Investing account
  • Residential mortgage
  • Small business account

The fee waivers are as follows:

 Monthly Fee RebateAvion Points
RBC bank account + 0-1 productsN/A1 point per $10 spent on debit (150 points maximum/month)
RBC bank account +2 productsUp to $61 point per $5 spent on debit (300 points maximum/month)
RBC bank account + 3+ productsUp to $11.951 point per $3 spent on debit (500 points maximum/month)

Pros of RBC No Fee Chequing Accounts

With a no-fee RBC chequing account, you save on monthly fees while performing debit and Interac e-Transfer transactions.

RBC accounts don’t require a minimum balance, so you don’t need to hold funds in your account at all times.

If signed up for the Value Program, you earn Avion points on debit purchases and can redeem them for flights, merchandise, gift cards, or as statement credits.

Cons of RBC No Fee Chequing Accounts

Unless you are a newcomer or a student, a free RBC chequing account has limited transactions.

It also does not offer annual fee rebates on credit cards.

At $1.25 per debit transaction exceeding the 12 free ones you get each month, you could end up paying a lot in fees if you conduct many transactions monthly.

No Fee Chequing Accounts in Canada

You can get a free chequing account in Canada that includes unlimited transactions and no minimum balance.

Many are offered by online banks, such as Simplii Financial, Tangerine, Motive Financial, and Alterna.

There are also hybrid bank accounts that include unlimited transactions but no cheques or ATM access. Examples include EQ Bank, Neo Financial, and KOHO.

Simplii Financial No-Fee Chequing Account

Monthly fee: $0

Free transactions: Unlimited debits purchases, bill payments, and withdrawals.

Sign-up bonus: Get a $350 bonus when you add an eligible direct deposit of at least $100 per month for 3 months. Earn 5% interest on a free Simplii savings account.

Interest earned on deposit: Up to 0.10%.

simplii logo2

On Simplii Financial’s website

  • Unlimited debit purchases, withdrawals, and bill payments with no fees.
  • Earn 0.05% or 0.10% interest, depending on your balance.
  • No minimum balance is required.
  • Overdraft protection can easily be added, and you can qualify for limits up to $5,000.
  • Access over 3,400 CIBC ATMs across Canada for free.
  • Receive a free Debit Mastercard that can be used online and in-store, wherever Mastercard is accepted.
  • Get real-time USD exchange rates when shopping in the US.
  • Your paycheque and pension can be deposited directly into your account.
  • Set up automatic bill payments and account-to-account transfers easily.
  • Use Global Money Transfer to send money worldwide with no fees.
  • Refer a friend and earn $50, with no limits to the number of referral bonuses you can get.

No fees and unlimited debit transactions

Earn 0.05% or 0.10% interest on every dollar

Easily set up automatic direct deposits, bill payments, and transfers

Only earn 0.10% interest on balances over $100,000

Overdraft protection costs $4.95 monthly plus a 19% interest rate

The Simplii Financial No-Fee Chequing Account does exactly as the name says – charges no fees for everyday transactions, including debit purchases, Interac e-Transfers, bill payments, and withdrawals. Get a Debit Mastercard, access thousands of CIBC ATMs across Canada, and send money worldwide with no fees. On top of that, earn up to 0.10% in interest on your balance.

EQ Bank Savings Plus Account

Monthly fee: $0

Free transactions: Unlimited debits, Interac e-Transfers, and bank-to-bank transfers.

Sign-up bonus: N/A

Interest earned on deposit: 2.50%

eqbanklogo

On EQ Bank’s website

  • Combined chequing and savings account that earns you 2.50% interest.
  • Zero monthly or yearly fees.
  • Free Interac e-Transfers, EQ to EQ transfers, electronic funds transfers, and bill payments.
  • No minimum balance is required.
  • Link other bank accounts to the EQ Savings Plus Account.
  • With your Account, categorize your spending, savings, and track your goals.
  • Mobile Cheque Deposit on the EQ Bank app.
  • No debit card or access to ATMs. To withdraw cash or access your funds, you must send money to your linked accounts.
  • Get a $20 bonus for each friend you refer, up to $500 total.
  • To open an EQ bank account, you must be 18 years of age or older, be the age of majority in your province, and have a SIN.
  • Note that EQ Bank is not available in Quebec.

Earn 2.50% interest on every dollar

No fees

Mobile app available

No debit card or ATM access

Not available in Quebec

The EQ Bank Savings Plus Account is a combined chequing and savings account that earns you 2.50% interest on every dollar, higher than any other online bank in Canada. Although it does not offer a debit card or access to ATMs, it is easy to send money to your linked accounts and withdraw cash. You get free transfers and bill payments with no minimum account balance.

KOHO Account

Monthly fee: $0

Free transactions: Unlimited debits and Interac e-Transfers.

Sign-up bonus: Earn $20 in cash back when you make a purchase within 30 days of registering.

Interest earned on deposit: Up to 2.00% interest rate.

KOHO logo

On KOHO’s website

  • No minimum account balance, fees, or promotional rates.
  • Send and receive unlimited free Interac e-Transfers.
  • Earn up to 5% cash back on purchases at KOHO partners.
  • Earn 0.50% to 2.00% interest on your balance, depending on your account tier.
  • With the KOHO account, choose a Standard or Premium KOHO Mastercard with different benefits.
  • Standard (Easy): earn 1% cash back on groceries and recurring bill payments and up to 5% cash back with KOHO partners with no monthly fees; 0.50% interest is paid on your balance.
  • KOHO Essential: earn 1% cash back on groceries and recurring bills; earn 0.25% cash back on all other purchases and up to 5% cash back with KOHO partners; earn 1.50% interest on your balance; $4 monthly fee.
  • Premium: earn 2% cash back on groceries, dining out, and transportation, 0.5% cash back on all other purchases, no FX fees, get 1 free international ATM withdrawal per month, price matching feature, earn 2% interest on your balance; $9/month or $84/year.
  • Build your credit history for an optional $10 per month.

Earn a high interest rate by setting up direct deposit

Choose a KOHO card that suits your needs

Earn 0.25% to 5% cash back on all purchases

No credit card available

Only 1 free ATM withdrawal per month with KOHO Premium

$84/year KOHO Premium fee

KOHO is a full-service spending and savings account with a prepaid Mastercard that earns you cash back on all purchases. You choose your level of cash back with the Easy, Essential or Premium KOHO card. You pay no monthly account fees, get unlimited transactions, and you can earn interest on your balance.

Neo Money Account

Monthly fee: $0

Free transactions: Unlimited debits, Interac e-Transfers, bill payments, and deposits.

Sign-up bonus: $5 welcome bonus.

Interest earned on deposit: 2.25%.

neologotransparent-img

On Neo Financial’s website

  • Earn 2.25% interest on your balance.
  • Interest is calculated daily and paid monthly.
  • Transactions, including purchases, bill payments, transfers, and direct deposits, are free and unlimited.
  • No minimum deposit or balance is required.
  • Easily set up automatic bill payments.
  • Fund your account in 3 ways: Interac e-Transfer, link your existing accounts, or set up direct deposit.
  • Neo Money does not come with a debit card; you must apply for a Neo Financial credit card if you want to earn cash back.
  • Note that Neo Money is only available in Alberta, Ontario, Saskatchewan, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador.

Earn 2.25% interest on your balance

Easily fund your account in one of 3 ways

No minimum deposit or balance required

No debit card included

No free ATM withdrawals

Not available in all provinces and territories

A hybrid spending and savings account, Neo Money pays 2.25% interest on your balance with no monthly fees or balance requirements. It includes unlimited, free transactions, bill payments, payroll deposits, transfers, and more. Although it does not come with a free debit card, you can sign up for the Neo Money card to earn cash back.

Tangerine No-Fee Daily Chequing Account

Monthly fee: $0

Free transactions: Unlimited debits and Interac e-Transfers.

Sign-up bonus: Earn 20% cash back on eligible transactions when you pay using your Visa Debit for the first 60 days and get 4.50% interest on your savings for 5 months.

Interest earned on deposit: Up to 0.10%.

Tangerine

On Tangerine’s website

  • Free daily transactions, including unlimited debit purchases, bill payments, Interac e-Transfers, and pre-authorized payments.
  • Free access to over 3,500 Scotiabank ABMs and over 44,000 ABMs worldwide through Scotiabank’s Global ATM Alliance.
  • Earn up to 0.10% interest on every dollar in your account.
  • Track and categorize your spending with online banking and the Tangerine app.
  • Deposit cheques instantly with the mobile app.
  • Optional overdraft protection is available.
  • Get a free Visa Debit card, widely accepted by Canadian and worldwide merchants.
  • Receive one free chequebook and one free stop payment per year.
  • 2.50% foreign currency conversion fee.
  • $45 NSF fee.
  • $1.50 non-Scotiabank ATM withdrawal fee in Canada and a $3 non-Scotiabank ATM withdrawal fee worldwide.

Earn up to 0.10% interest

Free, unlimited daily transactions

Access Scotiabank ABMs for free

Foreign transaction fee of 2.50%

Only earn 0.10% interest on balances over $100,000

High $45 non-sufficient funds fee

Tangerine is one of the best online banks in Canada. It does not disappoint with the No-Fee Daily Chequing Account, with unlimited free daily transactions and access to Scotiabank ABMs. The mobile app is up-to-date and user-friendly, with the ability to track and categorize your spending as well as deposit cheques.

FAQs

Does RBC have a minimum balance to waive fees?

No, RBC does not use minimum balances to rebate monthly chequing account fee. You only get a rebate if you qualify for a student, newcomer, senior, or Value Program discount.

What banks do not charge a fee for chequing accounts?

The no-fee bank accounts, Tangerine, Simplii, EQ Bank, Alterna, and Motive Financial do not have monthly fees.

Top Banking Offers in February

Get a top-rated chequing account and up to a $400 bonus

Unlimited debits and Interac e-Transfer transactions.

Monthly account fee is waived if eligible (and 5 ATM fees rebated/mo.).

Get up to $400 cash bonus when you meet minimum requirements.

Access a high-interest savings account.

Get a free chequing account and a $350 cash bonus

Unlimited debits, online bill payments and Interac e-Transfer transactions.

No monthly account or transaction fees.

$350 cash bonus when you deposit $100 for 3 months.

Get a high-interest rate on your savings (5.00% limited-time interest rate offer).

Best no-fee cashback credit card with a $150 bonus

Earn 2% unlimited cash back in three spending categories - no annual fees!

Get a $150 welcome bonus with $1,000 spending in first 2 months.

0.5% unlimited cash back on all other purchases.

1.95% low-interest balance transfer rate and insurance coverage benefits.

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Author

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

Enoch Omololu is a personal finance expert and a veterinarian. He has a master’s degree in Finance and Investment Management from the University of Aberdeen Business School (Scotland) and has completed several courses and certificates in finance, including the Canadian Securities Course. He also has an MSc. in Agricultural Economics from the University of Manitoba and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Ibadan. Enoch is passionate about helping others win with their finances and has been writing about money matters for over a decade. He has been featured or quoted in The Globe and Mail, Winnipeg Free Press, Wealthsimple, CBC News, Financial Post, Toronto Star, CTV News, Canadian Securities Exchange, Credit Canada, National Post, and many other personal finance publications. You can learn more about him on the About Page.

His top investment tools include Wealthsimple and Questrade. He earns cash back on purchases using KOHO, monitors his credit score for free using Borrowell, and earns interest on savings through EQ Bank.

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  • Lock-in 4.85% interest on a 1-Year GIC!
  • Guaranteed returns.
  • Open online within minutes.
For GIC terms equal to one year, simple interest is calculated on a per annum basis and paid at maturity. EQ Bank GICs are non-redeemable.
  • Lock-in 4.85% interest on a 1-Year GIC!
  • Guaranteed returns.
  • Open online within minutes.
For GIC terms equal to one year, simple interest is calculated on a per annum basis and paid at maturity. EQ Bank GICs are non-redeemable.