My favorite app based banks

There’s a new(ish) breed of bank accounts popping up, online-only app-based accounts that run on your smart phone and do not have brick and mortar locations.

USAA was like this for me forever, so I’ve been using app based banks for over a decade now.

I’ve tried 3 of what looked like the best and and 1 banking app that’s setup to give your teenagers a debit card.

We’re going to look at an overview for Chime, N26, and MoneyLion. I’ll cover Current, in another post or video.

I’ll make detailed reviews of each here shortly.

Chime is easy to use and navigate. Links to most major banks using Plaid’s secure service(but not all, I can’t link it to N26). But it’s biggest feature that gives it a unique edge, is the ability to make cash deposits. Any greendot location(CVS, Walgreen’s) can deposit**for a small fee**. As someone who does random side jobs, being able to deposit cash is nice.

N26 is… special. I’m drawn to it’s saving “spaces”, which are like sub-accounts. You can choose to include the balance on each space in your overall total, or hide it. I find it missing some key features I require. You can’t link other Banks. You can transfer in, if you link N26 from another bank, but that’s it. No cash deposits. Quirky perks based on weird subscriptions.

MoneyLion roars! By far my overall favorite. A full featured and rich experience, the only thing that it’s missing is cash deposits. You can mobile check deposit, link to other Banks, see your credit score and more. MoneyLion nudges you towards microinvesting, and offers a network of credit card options(which is as good as it’s bad). The plus account is $20a month, but every day you log in, they deposit $1 into your investment account. Up to the cost of the plus plan. It also has a mirco loan built in for direct deposit users. It will let you borrow 20% of your monthly deposit average, and pay it back out of your next. No fee.

Overall, I’ll be using the MoneyLion as my primary account. But both N26 and Chime fit a niche need too. Chime is simple for those who don’t want frills, and has key features like account linking and cash deposit. N26 can help you look at saving in another way.

In the next day, I should be putting out video reviews, with screenshots of key features, so if you want a little more information, stay tuned.

If you want to try one, sign up here, for a bonus:

MoneyLion – $10 for trying the Plus program, ( it’s not required, but the plus account is where the Instacash and $500 personal line of credit come in).

Chime – get $50 when you get your first direct deposit!

Ñ26 – Get $5 back on your first purchase of $10 or more on your N26 debit card.

3 Replies to “My favorite app based banks”

  1. I would like to see your take on “Asperation” bank. For me, the biggest perk is ATM fees paid back. Also, a large Progressive imprint in their investment choices. Biggest drawback (and for me this is huge) no cash deposits.

    1. My card got shipped back, but I have signed up and they are sending a new card. So far, the only negatives are no cash deposits and the usual low transfer limits.

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