Are you a Canadian resident or citizen and wondering who needs a US bank account?
If you are a Canadian with business or property in the US or you frequently travel to the United States of America, then the answer to the opening question is YOU!
With a US bank account, you avoid expensive transaction fees anytime you use your debit card and save yourself from the stress of converting CAD to USD.
The challenge is how to find the best US bank account for your specific needs. You are about to find out. Read on!
- Reasons a Canadian Might Need a US Bank Account
- Options for Canadians who need a USD Currency Account
- In-Dept Review of the Best USD Bank Accounts for Canadian Residents
- 1. Overall Best US Bank Account for Canadians → Wise Multi-Currency Account
- 2. RBC US Bank Accounts
- 3. Tangerine USD Bank Account
- 4. TD US Bank Account
- 5. CIBC US Bank Account
- 6. Scotia US Bank Account
- 7. Bank of Montreal US Dollar Accounts
- 8. National Bank US Account
- Recap: US Bank Accounts for Canadians at a Bank located in Canada
- ➤ The Best USD Bank Accounts for Canadians at a United States Bank
- ➤ Quick Comparison of the Best US Bank Accounts for Canadians at a Bank located in the United States
- 9. RBC Georgia
- 10. BMO Harris
- 11. CIBC Bank USA
- 12. Desjardins Florida
- 13. NatBank by National Bank
- 14. Chase Bank
- 15. TD Bank US
- Requirements to Open a U.S. Bank Account for Canadian Resident
- Criteria for U.S. Citizens to Open a Canadian Bank Account
- FAQs: Best US Dollar Bank Accounts for Canadians
- Bottom Line: Best US Bank Accounts for Canadians
- 2024 Tangerine Orange Key and Promotion: Get up to $200 Bonus Offer
Can a Canadian open a U.S. bank account? This comprehensive guide will share how to bank across the border and set up a US savings or checking account. We will also cover some of the best options for US bank accounts for Canadian residents.
Let’s get started!
Reasons a Canadian Might Need a US Bank Account
1. You have a property in the U.S
If you intend to buy property in the U.S., or you own one already, opening a U.S. bank account will allow you to apply for bank loans. You’ll also be able to pay your mortgage more conveniently.
2. If you are a Canadian working in the United States
If you are working in the U.S. on a visa and have a U.S. bank account, your cheques will be deposited into your U.S. account, saving you a lot of time and hassle.
3. You have a business in the United States
If you are considering opening a business in the U.S., or you own one already, a U.S. bank account might be beneficial. You’ll be able to open a business account and get numerous benefits, from faster payments to fewer fees and easier invoicing.
4. You travel to the U.S regularly
If you travel to the States frequently, opening a bank account with an American bank makes your life easier. You’ll find it easier to access your money and won’t have to worry about converting currencies from Canadian dollars to U.S. dollars and back again.
Options for Canadians who need a USD Currency Account
For Canadians that want a USD Currency Account, there are a few options available.
➤ Open a US Dollar Bank Account at a Canadian Bank
With a USD savings or chequing account at a Canadian bank, you can easily receive and keep USD and not have to convert U.S. Dollars to Canadian Dollars unless it’s required.
Plus, you could then exchange your money through third-party FX companies with better exchange rates.
You must use our unique link to get this welcome bonus.
➤ Open a US Bank Account for Canadians at a U.S. Bank
With this option, you can easily transfer USD funds with Wise without suffering losses caused by the exchange rate.
Also, a U.S. dollar account at a bank located in the U.S. makes it easier to conduct some transactions, especially if you own a property in the U.S., live part of the year in the U.S., or often write U.S. dollar cheques.
➤ Obtain a US Dollar Credit or Debit Card
You can get a USD prepaid card. This option is great for people who frequently travel to the United States and for those that shop online, as it can be used like a debit card to make purchases.
Alternatively, if you make a lot of purchases in U.S. dollars and prefer a credit card, you should consider obtaining a USD-denominated credit card. You can save 2.5% or more in foreign currency conversion fees when making payments in USD. However, the challenge is it comes with a hefty annual fee.
Now let’s take them one after the other and consider the best options.
In-Dept Review of the Best USD Bank Accounts for Canadian Residents
1. Overall Best US Bank Account for Canadians → Wise Multi-Currency Account
Best for no monthly fees with no minimum balance requirements.
The best choice for Canadians who want a US bank account is to open a virtual bank account. A virtual bank account is a special account that you can access anywhere and offers you bank account numbers for several countries.
Real US bank account done all online in a few minutes!
Wise (formerly called TransferWise) is a top-notch and popular international money transfer and currency exchange service. They offer mid-market exchange rates and low, transparent fees for sending money across the world.
Wise has been providing a virtual bank account for several years, and it is called the Wise Multi-Currency Account (previously Borderless Account). This account allows you to hold money in over 50 currencies, including Canadian dollars and U.S. dollars.
You can also receive money in USD, EUR, GBP, AUD, or NZD currencies and send money to over 60 countries. There is a Wise app on which you can always monitor your account balance. The highest amount you can hold in a Wise U.S. account is $1 million.
How to open a US Bank account from Canada with Wise
To open a US bank account from Canada with Wise, simply go to the Wise website and open a Wise multi-currency account.
You will get a US bank account number and routing number, along with bank accounts in 9+ other countries.
2. RBC US Bank Accounts
Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) is a major Canadian financial institution. It offers two main types of USD bank accounts. Each of them comes with different conditions and features.
RBC Personal USD Account
The RBC Personal USD Account is based on individuals rather than businesses. However, the associated fee structure is pretty modest. The monthly account fee is only $2, and there is no minimum balance requirement.
The account also comes with six free monthly debit transactions and, subsequently, $1.60 per transaction. You are also entitled to personalized cheques, overdraft protection, and bank drafts at a fee.
RBC USD High-Interest Savings Account
This account is more of a savings account than a chequing account, so it’s not best to place multiple transactions. It has zero monthly fees and comes with one free transaction per month. After that, any transactions made directly from the account attract a fixed $3 fee per transaction.
The primary benefit to the RBC USD HISA is that you can earn up to 0.25% accumulating interest on your account balance. However, unlike their USD chequing account equivalent, you are not allowed to receive personalized cheques. But you can pair your account with RBC’s U.S. dollar credit card (U.S. Dollar Visa Gold) at a $65 annual fee.
How to open an RBC US Bank account
You can either open your RBC USD HISA online or by going to an RBC branch.
ALSO READ >> RBC InvestEase
3. Tangerine USD Bank Account
Tangerine Bank is one of the best online banks in Canada. It is the only online-only Canadian financial institution on this list and the newest member of the US bank account market.
Tangerine USD Savings Account
Tangerine Bank is known to provide one of the best free chequing accounts and high-interest savings accounts in Canada, and their USD account also comes with highly favourable perks.
The Tangerine USD Savings account features no monthly fee, no minimum balance requirements, free unlimited transactions, and a 0.10% interest rate on account balances. The major downside is they have no real physical branch aside from their few pop-up stores.
How to open a Tangerine USD Bank account
Check-in at one of their pop-up stores, kiosks, or cafes. Or you can just open it online.
“Hey, I really like banking with Tangerine, and I think you’ll enjoy becoming a Client, too.”
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RELATED >> Tangerine Credit Cards
4. TD US Bank Account
Toronto Dominion Bank (TD Bank) offers two different types of US dollar balance accounts. The two accounts are chequing accounts but with distinct features.
TD USD Daily Interest Chequing Account
This is the more widespread account of the two accounts. It charges no monthly fee and pays a modest interest rate on account balances exceeding $1000. There is a $1.25 transaction fee, but if you maintain a minimum balance of $1500, this fee will be completely waived.
The TD USD Daily Interest Chequing account also pays interest up to 0.01% on your account balance.
TD USD Borderless Account
The TD USD Borderless Account is a little different from the aforementioned daily interest chequing account. This account has a $4.95 monthly fee which can be waived if you maintain a $3,000 monthly balance.
You’ll also enjoy unlimited free transactions and an interest rate between 0 to 0.1% depending on the size of your account balance. You can link the two accounts with the TD U.S. Dollar Visa Card, although it comes with a $39 U.S. annual fee (this fee is waived with a Borderless Plan account).
How to Open a TD US Bank Account
You can open either of these TD accounts online or at a local branch.
5. CIBC US Bank Account
Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) offers only one form of US dollar account- The CIBC USD Personal Account. It is similar to TD’s personal chequing account and is usually requested by individuals and not Canadian businesses.
CIBC USD Personal Account
This CIBC USD Personal Account offers a decent 0.05% interest rate on any balance, no monthly fees, and minimum balance requirements. It also allows you to issue U.S. dollar personalized cheques and withdraw USD freely from any CIBC branch or U.S. currency ATM in Canada.
However, you’ll pay a $0.75 fee which can not be waived for each transaction. You can combine your CIBC USD Personal Account with the CIBC U.S. Dollar Aventura Gold Visa card, but it attracts a $35 annual fee.
How to open a CIBC US Bank account
You can either open your CIBC USD Personal Account online or by walking into any of their branches.
6. Scotia US Bank Account
Scotiabank offers just one type of US dollar bank account, and it is a chequing/savings hybrid account.
Scotiabank USD Daily Interest Account
The Scotia U.S. Dollar Daily Interest Account offers one of the lowest monthly fees at just $1. This monthly fee can be waived if you maintain a $200 minimum account balance or if you are a senior age 60 or over.
It also comes with two free debit transactions monthly, after which you’ll pay $1.25 per transaction. The interest rate earned on the account balance is tiered and is up to 0.15%.
How to open a Scotia US Bank account
You can open an account in person at any of their bank branches or over the phone at 1-800-747-3208.
DID YOU KNOW? Simplii Financial is owned by Scotiabank.
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7. Bank of Montreal US Dollar Accounts
BMO offers two US-dollar accounts. They differ based on their purpose: The BMO USD Chequing account is a chequing account designed for regular transactions, while the BMO USD Saving account is designed to be more static.
BMO USD Chequing Account
One major outstanding feature of the BMO USD Chequing Account is the ability to waive monthly fees if you already pay monthly fees on any other separate BMO account. But if this is your only account with BMO, you’ll pay a $4 monthly fee.
The account comes with 12 free monthly transactions across all your accounts, after which you’ll pay $1.25 for subsequent transactions.
BMO USD Savings Account
Just like the USD chequing account, you’ll pay zero monthly fees on the BMO USD Savings Account if you link it to another BMO account. And you’ll also pay a $4 monthly fee if you have no other account and $1.25 for subsequent transactions after the 12 monthly complimentary ones.
What sets the account apart from the chequing account is the low 0.05% interest rate it accumulates on active account balances. Another difference is monthly fees for seniors over the age of 60 are waived.
How to open a BMO US Bank account
You can open any of the accounts online or walk into any BMO physical branch.
8. National Bank US Account
The National Bank of Canada offers only one USD account – The USD Progress Account. It is an all-in-one US banking account that is ideal for both individuals and businesses that can afford to maintain a reasonably large account balance.
National Bank USD Progress Account
The National Bank USD Progress account is designed to build up higher interest for wealthier account holders. It offers no monthly fee, and account balances between $5,000 and $10,000 earn a 0.10% interest rate, while over $10,000 earn 0.15% interest on their balance.
Automated bill payments attract a $2 fee, and you can set up personalized cheques, overdraft protection, and bill payments at a fee.
How to open a National Bank US account:
Walk into any branch of your choice to open an account.
RELATED >> National Bank of Canada Credit Cards
Recap: US Bank Accounts for Canadians at a Bank located in Canada
|Tangerine US Dollar Savings Account
|RBC U.S. High-Interest eSavings
|One free per month ($3 each after that)
|BMO U.S. Dollar Premium Rate
|Depends on Your Banking Plan.
|CIBC US$ Personal Account
|$0.75 per transaction.
|National Bank USD Progress Account
|Scotiabank US Dollar Daily Interest Account
|$1 per month or $200 Minimum
|Two free per month ($1.25 each after that)
|TD Borderless Plan
|$4.95/month or $3,000 Minimum
|TD U.S. Daily Interest Chequing Account
|$1.25 per transaction
➤ The Best USD Bank Accounts for Canadians at a United States Bank
Advantages and Disadvantages of Opening a US Dollar Account located in the U.S
Many major Canadian banks offer cross-border banking services, which benefit Canadians living and working in the US.
Before we look at these banks, let’s see the benefits and downsides of opening a US bank account for Canadian residents at a bank located in the U.S.
- You get the chance to develop a U.S. credit history
- It makes it easier to pay your bills in the U.S.
- You can transfer U.S. PayPal funds to your account easily.
- You can save on foreign transaction fees.
- You can’t easily go into a bank branch if you have to while you are in Canada.
- The interest you earn on your account may result in taxes payable in the U.S.
- Opening an account can be burdensome.
➤ Quick Comparison of the Best US Bank Accounts for Canadians at a Bank located in the United States
|Amount to wave fees
|No of free transact
|Smart Money Checking
|Smart Advantage Checking
|USA Smart Account
|TD Simple Checking
|TD Convenience Checking
|TD Premier Checking
9. RBC Georgia
RBC Georgia is the U.S based branch of the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC). The bank aims to help you simplify your finances and make life easier for Canadians living in the U.S. They allow you to set up an account or get a U.S. credit card, U.S. mortgage, U.S. loan, depending on your needs at the time.
You don’t need a United States address or a Social Security Number (SSN) to set up an account. All you need is your Canadian address and an existing account at RBC RBC Royal Bank in Canada.
Whether you are in Canada or the U.S., RBC Georgia allows you to pay your bills in just seconds.
Additionally, you can transfer money effortlessly using RBC online banking free of charge. Your U.S. account syncs with RBC Online Banking and offers you access to more than 50,000 free ATMs in the U.S. To top that, you can transfer money from your Canadian bank account to your U.S. bank account.
Overall, if you are travelling to the United States and you’d love to save money on foreign exchanges, RBC Georgia is worth considering.
RBC Direct Checking Account – Key Features
- You get ten free debits monthly and pay $1.00 per transaction after that.
- No minimum balance requirement, but you need a $50 deposit to open.
- You have access to over 50 000 free ATMs across the U.S.
- You can either pay an annual fee of $39.50 or a $3.95 monthly fee.
RBC Premium Checking Account – Key Features
- Free, unlimited transactions.
- The first order of 50 checks is free.
- You have access to over 50 000 free ATMs across the U.S.
- Excellent foreign exchange rate.
- You can either pay an annual fee of $99.95 or a $9.95 monthly fee
10. BMO Harris
BMO Harris US makes opening a U.S. bank account for Canadian residents effortless. You can complete the entire account opening process over the phone, which is an upside if you don’t have the time to go physically to a branch.
The BMO Harris Smart Advantage Account is the basic account. You enjoy no monthly fee (if you select paperless statements), zero minimum balance, unlimited free bill payments, and incoming wire transfers.
The Smart Money Account does not charge an overdraft fee, but it comes with a monthly maintenance fee of $5.
The BMO Harris Premier Account pays interest on all balances above zero. However, those with a $5,000 account balance or more get the best rate. A $25 monthly maintenance fee is charged if the minimum daily account balance falls below $10,000.
The Smart Advantage account and the Smart Money Account are non-interest-bearing checking accounts.
Note that you don’t need to open a Canadian account to open a BMO Harris bank account. Although BMO Harris and BMO partnered a few years back to offer cross-border banking solutions, they are still two separate bank entities.
11. CIBC Bank USA
With CIBC Bank USA, you can open a U.S. bank account as a Canadian, but you have to be an existing CIBC Canada client.
You can set up your account and complete the entire process online without going to a physical branch. Also, you can transfer money from your U.S. bank account effortlessly through Online Banking. The account is also compatible with Apple Pay.
CIBC Bank USA offers the CIBC USA Smart Account. This account links to your online bank profile automatically, and you can get a debit card, pay bills in USD, and write USD cheques. You also get free access to multiple ATMs in the U.S. and can receive U.S. payroll deposits. You don’t need a U.S. address or Social Security Number (SSN) to open an account.
12. Desjardins Florida
Desjardins Bank lets people make daily transactions quite easily and at a low cost.
You’ll also enjoy many benefits if you become a member of Desjardins Caisse in Canada. Your account will already be open by the time you’ll leave for Florida, and you’ll have a debit card. Additionally, you’ll be able to transfer money in advance.
To open an account, you need to provide your passport and a valid photo ID. They’ll also ask for a minimum balance which you’ll pay to Desjardins Bank through a funds transfer. The amount of money they’ll request will differ depending on the type of account you are opening.
They offer online banking, which is very convenient. So you can transfer between different accounts, check your account balance regularly, check previous transactions, pay bills, and so on.
13. NatBank by National Bank
You can open an account for savings or for making transactions using NatBank. It offers over 1,200 ATMs in Florida and other U.S. states, online banking, and e-statements.
The requirements and specifications differ with the kind of bank you want to open. So, it might be best to reach out to a financial advisor to learn more information about the requirements to meet for setting up an account.
14. Chase Bank
Chase banking is another easy way to open a bank account in the US. There are several types of accounts, and you can pick whichever one suits your specific needs best.
You will need any Social Security Number, your driver’s license, or state ID to open an account. You’ll also have to provide your contact information.
Chase bank accounts have a minimum deposit requirement to open an account. If you are studying in the U.S., you may get up to five consecutive years of zero monthly fees.
Chase Bank has 5,100 branches nationwide. You can operate any bank account you have with them from anywhere in the world and make transactions through your phone, tablet, or computer.
15. TD Bank US
For the TD Simple Checking account, there’s no minimum balance requirement or specific monthly maintenance fee. The TD Convenience Checking account has a $15 monthly fee, but it can be waived if you maintain a minimum daily balance of $100.
To open an account, you have to select your primary residence. As a Canadian resident, you can bank with TD Bank in the United States. This account will still be a Canadian one and is not an account with a US address.
Wherever you are in Canada, you have to pick the bank location that is closest to you. Then you can go ahead with the online application process.
You need to supply your passport or Nexus card number as well as a second form of ID. Include your contact information and your source of income. You might be given a couple of questions to answer to verify your identity. But this won’t affect your credit score or anything related.
Requirements to Open a U.S. Bank Account for Canadian Resident
Bank policies differ, but the general rule of thumb is to provide two valid forms of identification, like a driver’s license and a passport, plus other details like your full name, employer, phone number, and mailing address in Canada.
Although most financial institutions in the U.S. allow Canadians to open accounts, you may not be able to use all of the bank’s services.
You might be wondering, Can US citizens open a Canadian Bank Account? The answer is Yes. However, they have to meet certain criteria.
Criteria for U.S. Citizens to Open a Canadian Bank Account
Most Canadian banks will require that you either be a resident or provide immigration papers that show you will soon be a resident before opening an account.
The Financial Consumer Agency usually lists certain documents that a bank will request.
You will likely be asked to provide one or two documents from this list:
- A valid Canadian driver’s license.
- Your current Canadian passport.
- Birth certificate issued in Canada.
- Your Canadian Social Insurance Number (SIN) card.
- Old Age Security card issued by the Government of Canada.
- Provincial health insurance card.
- Certificate of Naturalization or Certificate of Canadian Citizenship.
- Permanent Resident card or an Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) form.
These are the acceptable immigration papers:
- Work or study permit.
- Temporary Residence Permit.
- Permanent Residence Confirmation.
You may also have to provide a document from this list:
- An employee ID card that has your picture on it.
- A bank card, debit card, or Canadian credit card.
- A present foreign passport.
Someone who has a good reputation with the bank or in the local community can also help you confirm your identity.
If the account you are opening will earn interest and be tax liable, you have to present a Social Insurance Number (SIN). You can get a SIN from the Canadian government.
FAQs: Best US Dollar Bank Accounts for Canadians
Bottom Line: Best US Bank Accounts for Canadians
Wise US Bank Account
If you’re looking for a US bank account that’s right for Canadians, look no further than Wise. Here’s why:
✔️ You can hold and manage your money in US Dollars, which is great if you’re looking to save or budget in USD.
✔️ You’ll get a Visa debit card that’s accepted by businesses all over the US and around the world, so you can shop and withdraw USD cash without any hassle.
✔️ Wise offers the best exchange rates and lowest money transfer fees of any US bank account for Canadians.
✔️ You can easily send and receive money from friends and family in the US with a Wise US bank account.
✔️ With Wise, there are no monthly fees or minimum balances, so you can keep your US bank account without worry.
✔️ Wise is FINTRAC regulated, so your money is always safe.
So if you’re looking for a US bank account that’s easy to use and comes with great features, Wise is the way to go.
◘ Best For: Individuals and businesses
◘ Monthly Fee: $0
◘ Minimum Balance Required: None
◘ Promotion: Get $3,000 (or £2,000 equivalent) Free Transfer
If you work or live in the US for even a part of the year, having a US bank account will simplify your life. You can avoid ridiculous transaction fees and won’t have to worry about converting CAD to USD.
You can either open a USD account with a bank in Canada or a US account for Canadians at a US bank. We’ve listed the best ones in this article.
When making your choice, keep the requirements and options available for each bank in mind. That way, you can make an informed decision.
More on Banking in Canada:
- Neo Financial Review
- Neo Money™️ Account Review
- Simplii vs Tangerine
- EQ Bank vs Tangerine
- Best Business Bank Account
- Best Online Banks, Canada
- Best US Bank Account for Canadian Residents
- Best No-Fee Bank Account, Canada (Free Chequing Accounts)
Charity (Charee) Oisamoje is the founder of TheFinanceKey - TFK. She leads the editorial team, which is comprised of subject-matter experts.
Her professional competencies and expertise make her qualified on this topic. She is an expert at collecting details, verifying facts, and making complex subjects easy to understand.
Backed by Solid Credentials: MBA in Finance Canadian Investment Funds (IFIC) Graduate Masters Degree in International Business Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) Candidate ✔️Chartered Insurance Professional (CIP) ✔️BSc Accounting
Learn More >> About Page
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