Your First Savings Account: How to Open a Bank Account
There are many different types of bank accounts: savings accounts, checking accounts, payroll accounts, time deposit accounts, and more. Choosing the right bank account will completely depend on you because each type has its own benefits and drawbacks.
However, when people talk about opening their first bank account, they usually mean a savings account. The simplest reason for this is that a savings account incurs the least cost with a few added benefits.
What is a savings account?
This is a bank account where you can keep your extra cash or emergency fund, and it is available for withdrawal. (Read: How to Build your Emergency Fund)
You can deposit cash and checks but you can’t issue checks with this type of bank account. One of the biggest reasons why you would want to start with a savings account is because the initial deposit and maintaining balance is typically much lower than other types of accounts. You can open one for as low as ₱100 with ₱2,000 as a maintaining balance.
The biggest downside to it is that its annual interest rates are typically less than 1%. Like other accounts, you can also incur penalties up to ₱500 if your account goes below its maintaining balance for over 30 days. You’re also limited to a specific withdrawal amount and even per transaction per day. This varies from bank-to-bank.
Take note that if you withdraw or check your balance from an ATM of another bank, you will be charged with a service fee.
What are the basic requirements for a bank account in the Philippines?
Typical requirements for opening a savings account are:
- 2 Valid IDs like:
- Two 1×1 ID pictures taken in the last six months
- Proof of Billing like:
- Electric bill
- Telco bill
- Water bill
- Tax Identification Number
- Initial Deposit (varies depending on the bank)
How do I choose my bank?
Just like in choosing which type of bank account best fits your needs, the same decision applies in choosing which bank to start your first bank account with.
The factors you need to consider are:
- Initial Deposit
- Maintaining balance
- Required balance to incur interest
- Interest rates
- Online banking services
Not sure where to open a savings account? Here are some of the more popular banks for your reference:
|Bank and Account Type||Initial Deposit||Maintaining Balance||Required Balance to Earn Interest||Interest Rate|
|BDO ATM Savings Account||P2,000||P2,000||P5,000||0.250%|
|BPI Kaya Savings Account||P200||P0||P1,000||0.25% p.a.|
|Chinabank Easi-Save ATM||P500||P500||P1,000||0.75% p.a.|
|Landbank Savings Account||P500||P500||P500||0.250% p.a.|
|Metrobank ATM Savings Account||P2,000||P2,000||P10,000||0.25%|
|RCBC Dragon Peso Savings Account||P500||P500||P25,000||0.25% p.a.|
How do I apply for a savings account?
- Select your bank of choice and bank account type
- Compile your requirements and initial deposit
- Go to your selected bank’s nearest branch
- Go to an available bank officer and request for all pertinent bank forms
- Fill in and sign all bank forms
- Review the terms and conditions
- Pay the initial deposit
- Ask the bank officer when your account will be activated and when can claim your card
- Claim your card and change the PIN
- Subscribe to online banking
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