Scotiabank Review: Chequing, Banking & Credit Card Package

Scotiabank Reivew
  • Chequing Account
  • Savings Account
  • Free Premium Credit Card
  • Banking Convenience
  • Asset Safety
  • Fees
  • Promotion

Scotiabank Review Summary:

Our Scotiabank bank accounts review looks at Scotia’s featured packages that come complete with chequing account,savings account and credit card.

While all of the big Canadian banks offer some version of an “elite, all-in-one” package, Scotiabank’s is the best of the Big Banks in terms of overall value of perks and points values.

But while Scotiabank offers the best all-in-one banking packages on the market, the individual services don’t beat our top pick for chequing accounts or our top recommended savings account. EQ Bank still offers an unbeatable combination of no fees and high interest that Scotiabank can’t match.


  • Best HISA of all big banks
  • Free premium credit cards with select banking packages
  • Great perks and rewards
  • Fantastic $350 cash bonus for new accounts


  • Monthly fee unless you keep a 5K chequing balance or a 30K total balance
  • HISA interest rates are much lower than EQ Bank
  • Better sign up for multiple services to get max value

Scotiabank is exceptionally easy to use. It has all the brick-and-mortar corner location convenience, coupled with an excellent online platform. It’s a solid all-in-one bank, as you would expect from one of Canada’s Big Five Banks.

While the savings account interest rate is not as good as EQ Bank (our #1 high interest savings account) it is by far the best deal amongst RBC, TD, BMO and CIBC. So if you’re more of a “pop into the branch” kind of person, or if you like to keep all your financial services under a single umbrella, then Scotiabank is your best bet. 

However, if:

  • You don’t have a problem with online banks
  • You don’t mind splitting up your financial business
  • You don’t qualify for the waived fees

…then you can find better value elsewhere. 

What is Scotiabank?

Scotiabank, (officially the Bank of Nova Scotia), is one of Canada’s Big Five banks. Founded in Halifax in 1832, Scotiabank is now considered to be Canada’s most international bank with more than 25 million customers from around the world.

Scotiabank is one of Canada’s oldest and most trusted banks with a full range of banking products. In this Scotiabank review, I’m going to highlight the Ultimate Package and the Preferred Package because they offer customers the most value.

Scotiabank Welcome Bonus 2024

Scotiabank often has generous promos for both the preferred and ultimate package accounts. At the moment, they’re offering $350 to new clients who open the Preferred or Ultimate packages.

To enjoy Scotiabank’s generous offer, open a new account and complete two of the following actions within 60 days:

  • Make a bill payment of $50 or more
  • Set up and clear at least 2 separate recurring pre-authorized transactions that are $50 or more, which will each recur monthly for a minimum of 3 consecutive months
  • Set up and clear at least one automated and recurring direct deposit, such as payroll or pension, which will recur monthly for a minimum of 3 consecutive months.

Offer is valid until April 30, 2024.

Scotiabank Account Types

As one of Canada’s Big Five banks, Scotiabank has no shortage of account types to choose from including the following:

  • Scotiabank chequing accounts
  • Scotiabank savings accounts including high interest savings accounts
  • Scotiabank seniors accounts (which includes senior’s discounts)
  • Scotiabank student accounts (which include $0 monthly student account fees)
  • Scotiabank US accounts
  • Scotiabank small business accounts
  • And, of course, products like Scotiabank TFSA, RRSP etc. 

Under these different account categories there are further options depending on your banking needs. These range from basic packages to more upscale packages with unlimited withdrawals and additional perks. The upscale packages come with hefty fees, but – there’s a way to avoid them, which we’ll get into shortly.

Scotiabank Ultimate Package

For those who are really looking to get everything they can out of an all-in-one banking package, then the Scotiabank Ultimate Package is the ideal choice. There are many all-in-one bank packages that give you unlimited this or that, but the perks in the Scotiabank Ultimate Package are simply second to none.

The Details

With the Scotiabank Ultimate Package, you will receive: 

  • An unlimited amount of free transactions and e-transfers.
  • Any withdrawals from non-affiliated and global ATMs will also be free. 
  • Account holders will also have the fee waived for the Basic Plus Bank Account and the Scotia US Dollar Daily Interest account (if you have or want them). 
  • Plus, if you have a Momentum Plus Savings Account, you will receive an additional 0.10% interest. 
  • Account holders can also earn SCENE Points (read Scotiabank SCENE Visa review for information about the SCENE program) on every transaction (1 reward for $5 spent).
  • Special select GIC rates.
  • Unlimited FREE international money transfers.
  • FREE monthly overdraft protection.
  • FREE cheques and bank drafts.
  • FREE safety deposit box.

PLUS – perhaps the top perk in Canadian chequing account deals today – Ultimate Package holders will pay NO fees (up to a $150 value) for one of a selection of Scotiabank credit cards. This includes the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite, a top-rated cashback card.

How to Avoid Paying Monthly Fees on a Scotiabank Package

he Scotiabank Ultimate Package comes in at $30.95 per month – BUT – there is an easy way to avoid that pesky fee.

If you maintain a balance of $5,000 in your chequing account, or if you carry a combined balance of $30,000 across your Scotiabank chequing and savings accounts – you get the entire Scotiabank Ultimate Package for the grand total of $0.

Quantifying the Value of the Scotia Ultimate Package

Sometimes it can help to see the value of an offer in terms of dollars and cents, so we totalled up the value of the Scotia Ultimate Package. Here’s the value you get as part of that package:

Here’s the value you get as part of that package:

  • Free premium credit card ($140 value)
  • Free withdrawals from non-Scotia ATMs around the world – (Average $20 per year value to me)
  • Free Safety Deposit Box ($50 value)
  • Free Overdraft Protection ($60 value)
  • Extra .10% interest ($30 value on $30,000 savings)
  • Free Cheques ($25 value)
  • Free International Money Transfers (Average value $0 – $200)
  • Rewards points on chequing account spending (Value – depends on your spending, but at least a few free movie tickets per year = $50)
  • The full slate of available Scotia accounts (At least $180 with any major Canadian bank).

Grand Total: $555! (And that’s assuming $0 in value for international monetary transfers.) So if you take advantage of the full package, you’re saving money even if you do end up paying the monthly fee.

Scotiabank Preferred Package

If the Scotiabank Ultimate Package seems like you’re paying for a few options that you might not use, you can also consider the Scotiabank Preferred Package.

The Scotiabank Preferred Package isn’t quite as all-encompassing as the Ultimate package, but it still offers some great perks and discounts for Scotiabank products. As such, the Scotiabank account fees for this product are significantly lower.  In fact, as long as you maintain a minimum daily closing balance of $4,000 in your account – the monthly fees will be waived.

The preferred package includes:

  • An unlimited amount of debit transactions and e-transfers.
  • Account holders will also have the fee waived for the Basic Plus Bank Account and the Scotia US Dollar Daily Interest account (if you have or want them). 
  • Plus, if you have a Momentum Plus Savings Account, you will receive an additional 0.05% interest. 
  • Account holders can also earn SCENE Points on every transaction (1 reward for $5 spent)
  • PLUS – perhaps the top perk in Canadian chequing account deals today – Preferred Package holders will receive a first-year fee waiver (up to a $150 value) for one of a selection of Scotiabank credit cards.

The monthly fee for the Scotiabank Preferred Package is $16.95.

Is Scotiabank Safe?

Many wonder if Scotiabank is a good bank for online safety. 

The quick answer? Yes. 

Their platforms are safe as online banking and mobile apps can be. 

Scotiabank takes a number of steps to ensure that your account and information is kept safe and secure. This is done through methods including 128-bit SSL, firewalls and monitoring, timeouts, time stamps, masked numbers, security software, and more. 

Scotiabank also has a security guarantee. As per their website: “We will fully reimburse you in the unlikely event that you suffer direct financial losses due to unauthorized activity1 in your accounts through Scotia OnLine Financial Services2 or through Mobile Banking, provided you have met your security responsibilities.”

Of course, like all major Canadian chequing accounts, your Scotiabank accounts are covered my Canadian Deposit Insurance Corporation insurance coverage (CDIC) on your first $100,000 per account.

Scotiabank Mobile App Review

Considering the skyrocketing numbers of people who do their banking via smartphone, the last thing you want when you pick a new bank account is a bad app. Luckily, the Scotiabank app seems pretty solid. As of the time of writing, Scotiabank’s mobile app has a 4.7 star rating on both the Apple store and Google Play. Recent reviews are split between rave reviews and specific technical complaints. 

Users who left recent negative reviews have been struggling with required 2-factor authentication (inconvenient but increasingly necessary), bill payments, and cheque deposits. Others have had no problem at all, so the complaints are likely something to be aware of but not a deal breaker. 

How to Open a New Scotiabank Account

If this Scotiabank Review has you convinced that one of these packages is for you, then you can easily sign up to open an account online. Opening an account online can be done in about five minutes. 

To open an account, you do need to meet the following requirements:

–       You must be at least 16 years old

–       You must be a Canadian resident or in Canada to work or study

–       You must be opening the account in your own name

–       You must be ok with paperless document delivery

To start, visit the Scotiabank web page of the package you are interested in and click the button to get that specific package.

You will then be asked if you have any other services with Scotiabank. If you do, this makes life a lot easier as they can link your profile and get your information. So go ahead and sign into Scotia OnLine banking through the designated link.

You will then be asked what you plan on using the account for. For most people, it will be daily banking. The next step will require you to fill in your personal information. You do need your SIN so make sure you have that on hand.

Again, this process should only take about five minutes. However, if you decide to apply on the app, you can speed up the process by using your driver’s license as Photo ID verification.  

Scotiabank Review FAQ

Our Thoughts – Scotiabank Review Summary

I’ll admit it: as someone who doesn’t mind reading for a few hours to get that absolute highest interest rate – or finding the perfect credit card for my spending patterns – I don’t love the idea of having to pay a monthly fee for a banking account. 

But when you actually add up the value like we did above, the $31 price tag – or even better – the $5,000 chequing account balance or $30,000 high interest savings account deposit, there is no question that the Scotiabank Ultimate Package is an excellent option for Canadians who want to simplify their banking life.

However, if you’re not planning to use every single item in the package, or if you don’t meet the minimum balance requirements, the value of the Scotiabank Ultimate Package decreases rapidly.

For people who are simply looking for a good bank account for everyday purchasing or saving, EQ Bank still offers significantly better value, plus a much better everyday interest rate. You can learn more in our EQ Bank review or our list of the best online banks in Canada

Kyle Prevost

Kyle Prevost is Canada's Top Personal Finance Teacher and an author/speaker/advisor when he is not in his classroom. His writing has been featured across Canada’s most-read publications. When he isn’t nerding out about P/E ratios or MERs, you can find Kyle on a basketball court or in a boxing ring trying to recapture something he isn’t sure that he had in the first place.
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