The Best Bank Account Promotions in Canada

If you’ve spent any time with us, you’ll know that we love a good bonus offer and/or bank account promo offer code.

But which of Canada’s bank account promotions are currently worth your time? 

We’ve combed through the industry’s promos and picked out some of the very best for you.

These promotional offers are from well-known trustworthy Canadian banks, either online banks or brick-and-mortar.

They range from no-fee accounts to premium packages, and they include savings accounts as well as chequing, to help you find what you’re looking for.

You can find our picks in the following Best Bank Promo Comparison for easy reference, with more details included below it. We also give you some questions to consider while you’re looking for your next bank account… because ultimately, the best promo offer will be for the account that works best for you, regardless of how much money they’re offering you.

Best Bank Promo Comparison Chart

Bank/AccountAccount TypePromo OfferExpiry
EQ Bank Savings Plus Savings/ hybrid2.50% everyday interest rate N/A
TangerineChequing and Savings2.25% interest rate for 5 monthsMarch 31, 2023
Scotiabank Ultimate PackageChequing$350 cash bonusApril 30, 2023
Scotiabank Preferred PackageChequing$350 cash bonusApril 30, 2023
CIBC Smart and Smart Plus AccountsChequing$350 cash bonus + No fee for up to 12 monthsNot indicated
RBC Signature No Limit or VIP BankingChequing$300 cash bonusMarch 31, 2022
SimpliiChequing and Savings 3% interest until the promotions end + $350 cash bonusJuly 31st, 2022

Best Overall Value: EQ Bank Savings Plus Account

The EQ Bank Savings Plus account from online bank EQ (powered by Equitable Bank, founded over 50 years ago) is a hybrid account, combining the best features of chequing and savings.

While EQ doesn’t offer a debit card, their free e-transfers, electronic funds transfers, and bill payments still give you the flexibility of a chequing account. And an unprecedented 1.50% interest rate easily beats your typical bank savings accounts by a factor of over 100.

This isn’t a promotional rate, but it’s so good that it’s like getting a welcome bonus every single month.

It’s just one reason why the EQ Bank Savings Plus is our pick for the best savings account in Canada, and why it’s our pick for best bank account promo…even though it’s not a welcome bonus at all. 

Check out our EQ Bank Review for all the details.

Runner Up: Tangerine Chequing and Savings Account

Tangerine, a digital-only division of Scotiabank, offers customers no-fee accounts and credit cards, plus competitive investments, lending, and most of what you’d expect from a more traditional brick and mortar bank.

Tangerine account holders have access to Scotiabank’s ATM network, and their no-fee Visa Debit card allows you to make point-of-sale purchases. You can read more about Tangerine’s offerings in our Tangerine bank review.

Tangerine’s current promo offer requires new clients to open both a chequing and a savings account:

  • Become a new Tangerine client by March 31, 2023, using the promo code EARNMORE
  • Open a Tangerine chequing and savings account within 30 days and earn 2.25% interest in your savings account for 5 months (after the 5 months are up, interest rates return to 0.1%).
  • Add your payroll and have the first payroll direct deposit to your chequing account within 60 days
  • Continue receiving payroll to this account for at least 3 months—and earn a $300 bonus

Best Chequing Account Promo OffersScotiabank Ultimate and Preferred Package

Scotiabank’s Ultimate and Preferred package accounts have relatively high fees ($30.95 and $16.95 respectively) but they’re honestly so packed with features that they’re worth a look.

These packages include unlimited debit transactions, bonus interest on a Momentum PLUS Savings account, and a free Premium Credit Card.

Depending on what your bank balance is in an average month, the Scotiabank Ultimate and Preferred packages could cost you nothing. The monthly fee is waived if you maintain a minimum balance of $5,000 for an Ultimate package or $4,000 for a Preferred package.

Here are the details for Scotiabank’s promo offer:

  • Open a new Ultimate or Preferred Package account by April 30, 2023
  • Complete any TWO of the following:
  • Use mobile or online banking to make an eligible bill payment of at least $50
  • Set up and clear at least 2 eligible recurring pre-authorized payments of at least $50 and have them recur monthly for at least 3 consecutive months
  • Set up and clear at least one eligible recurring direct deposit, which will occur monthly for at least 3 consecutive months
  • Bonus will be deposited in your account within 6 months

You can learn more in our detailed Scotiabank review, or sign up using the button below.

CIBC Smart Account and Smart Plus Account

CIBC’s Smart account is a basic chequing account with pricing that varies depending on the number of transactions you need. Meanwhile, the Smart Plus is a premium all-in-one account package that includes features like overdraft protection and an eligible CIBC credit card.

CIBC’s Smart and Smart Plus accounts are on the pricier side (up to 16.95 for the Smart account or up to $29.95 for the Smart Plus account). However, fees can be waived if you maintain a minimum balance of $4,000 for the Smart Account or $6,000 for the Smart Plus Account.

In order to receive CIBC’s $350 bonus, you must do the following:

  • Open a CIBC Smart Account or CIBC Smart Plus Account and provide an email address
  • Within the first 2 months, complete TWO of the following tasks:
  • Set up at least one recurring direct deposit and keep it in effect for at least 2 months
  • Set up at least two recurring pre-authorized debits and keep them in effect for at least 2 months
  • Complete at least two online bill payments of $50 each
  • You’ll receive your $350 deposit within 7 months of opening your account.

CIBC’s promo offer also includes a fee waiver. The $29.95 fee for the Smart Plus account is waived for 3 months if you complete the requirements for the $350 bonus. The fee for the Smart account is waived for up to 12 months, as long as you keep the recurring monthly transactions you set up.

RBC Signature No Limit Banking and RBC VIP Banking

RBC’s Signature No Limit Banking account is a standard account with unlimited debit transactions, free e-transfers, and a rebate on the annual fee for an RBC credit card. The fees range between $4 and $15.95.

The RBC VIP Banking account is a premium account which includes unlimited transactions worldwide, up to $120 off the annual fee of an RBC premium credit card, and extra bank accounts, all for between $18.05 and $30.

In order to receive RBC’s $300 promo offer you must:

  • Open an eligible account by March 31, 2022
  • Set up and complete TWO of the following within the first 2 months:
    • Your pay as a direct deposit
    • Two pre-authorized monthly payments
    • Two eligible bill payments to a service provider

Best Savings account offers

We’ve already dug into a couple of featured savings accounts that are worth considering. Let’s review:

EQ Bank’s Savings Plus Account has all the benefits of a savings account with the flexibility of a chequing account. It also has an everyday 1.50% interest rate that blows other accounts out of the water.

Tangerine has a standalone Savings account, but their welcome bonus applies to new accountholders who open both a chequing and a savings account. Tangerine has a higher promotional rate (2.25%) but it only lasts for a few months.

In addition to these excellent accounts, there’s one more that’s worth a look:

Simplii Financial High Interest Savings Account

If EQ and Tangerine don’t appeal, you could consider a High Interest Savings Account from Simplii Financial (an online division of CIBC). This account has no fees or minimum balance requirements.

Until October 31, 2022, new account holders will receive a special promotional rate of 3.00%. You’ll receive the bonus interest as a lump sum payment in November 2022. Like Tangerine, after the promotional period is over your interest rate returns to 0.1% – which is why we feel EQ Bank’s everyday rate is such a phenomenal feature in comparison.

Read our Simplii Financial review where we provide more details and compare it to other Canadian banks.

Which Bank Promo Is Right for You? (Hint: it’s not always the biggest one)

Even though bank account welcome promotions can be valuable ($350 is nothing to sneeze at!), picking an account based solely on the bonus is risky. That’s why it’s important to be sure the bank account you’re getting is the one that’s right for you, promo offer or no.

We built this list with bonus value, institution reliability, and customer service in mind. We wanted you to have a solid list of options to start from. But you still need to consider your personal situation before you make your choice

Here are some things to consider:

  • Do you qualify for the bonus? Most promo offers are geared towards new banking customers, so make sure you qualify!
  • How difficult is it to open an account?  Do you need extra documents? Do you need to visit a branch in person? How hard will that be for you?
  • Does the account give you what you need? Do you need point of sale abilities, or are e-transfers and bill payments what you’re looking for? How many monthly transactions are you anticipating? Your answers can make a huge difference in which account will work best for you.
  • What do you need to do to get the full bonus? As you’ve seen from our list, many bonus offers require account holders to complete multiple tasks. These are fine if you were already planning to use your account for those things—but what if you weren’t?
  • Don’t pick an account that needs you to set up a direct payroll deposit or bill payments if you were planning to use it for something else entirely. Think about why you’re opening this account and what you want to use it for, and then make sure your welcome bonus fits that.
  • What kinds of fees do the accounts have? A bonus that waives monthly fees is tempting, but keep in mind that unless you maintain a hefty bank balance, you’ll have to pay those fees eventually. Is a $30/month account what you need, or would a no-fee bank account do the trick? It also helps to skim the fine print. Make sure you’re not signing up for hidden extra fees without realizing it!

If you’re looking for more information about which account is best for you, we have resources that can help! Check out our posts about the Best Chequing Account in Canada and the Best Online Bank in Canada to give you a solid start. If you’re a student, we recommend our list of the Best Bank Accounts for Students.

Canadian Banks Promotions: FAQ

The Best Bank Promo Offers in Canada

Looking for a new bank account should be more than scouting for the best promo offer. Keep in mind that you want a bank account that’s going to work for you in the long term, not just the one that gives you the most short-term rewards.

Luckily, Canada’s banks have stepped up and you have plenty of accounts (and bonuses) to choose from. Whether you’re looking for a premium all-in-one package with a monthly fee or a no-fees, no-frills chequing or savings account, there’s something for you on this list.

Gen Y Money also keeps an updated list of the best bank account promotions, so make sure to check there as well.

The best promotion for you will depend on what you’re specifically looking for in a bank account – and who you’ve banked with in the past. However, our picks for the pinnacle of promo offers for chequing accounts are Tangerine and Scotiabank, with an honourable mention to CIBC. And if you want a savings account with the peak everyday offer on the market, you can’t find better than EQ Bank.

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Meg

Meg Goodmanson is a writer, editor, virtual assistant, credit card expert, and lifelong learner-of-things. A self-proclaimed nerd, Meg’s favourite thing is collecting information and presenting it in an interesting and helpful way—especially if it helps her travel for free!
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