Best Digital Banks in the Philippines

Best Digital Banks in the Philippines | With the ECQ happening in the Philippines, going to banks for errands and transactions is becoming near impossible.

I’ve never liked having loads of cash in my ATMs, for many reasons:

  • the <1% interest does not make sense against the 6% inflation rate, there are several other better vehicles to keep my money for safekeeping, and
  • I needed a circuit breaker for my over-spending tendencies.

When my friend told me about virtual banks and the high-interest rates, my interest also piqued. 4% interest? How’re they supposed to do that?!?

I did my research, opened a few virtual bank accounts, and ready to share with you my experience to the readers. I have since then put up my emergency fund here versus in money market securities. Since COVID has given us more volatility and more uncertainty, it’s a lot easier to put the money here.

If you’re interested in knowing more about digital banks and digital banks in the Philippines, read on.

FIRST OFF: What is a Digital Bank?

The term ‘digital’ seems confusing because most traditional banks now have digital, online, and mobile capabilities. With these services, clients can do basic banking transactions (such as fund transfer, bill payments, etc.) over the internet or app.

Fully Digital Banks are banks that have no physical branches or bank tellers. All banking transactions are done digitally via the mobile app.

Because of the low overhead (rent, manpower, equipment) versus traditional banks, digital banks can give better rates up to 4%, as well as no transaction fees. This makes the interest 5x higher than traditional banks!

Benefits of a Digital Bank:
  • No lines
  • Higher interest rate (2.5% to 4%)
  • No transaction fees
  • 100% convenience
  • 24/7 access
  • Paperless (more eco-friendly!)

Personally, I suggest you to keep a good mix of both traditional and digital banking services. There are still a few obstacles in digital banking (e.g. no ATM, cybersecurity, etc.) It depends on your needs.

Best Digital Banks in the Philippines

ING

ING is the most well known digital bank in the list–available in 40 countries with almost 40 million customers.

There is a promo offer until July 31, 2020 – 4%* interest rate for old and new ING bank accounts. After July 31, interest rate is 2.5%*

ING Features:
  • 4.1% interest rate (minus 20% withholding tax)
  • No required minimum balance
    * 4% interest rate (2.5% after July 31) for balances up to P10 million
  • * 1% interst rate for any additional balance above P10 million

Time needed: 15 minutes.

How to Open an ING Savings Account (link)

  1. Download ING App

    Download the app in Google PlayStore for Android and AppStore for iOs.

  2. Prepare requirements

    – 1 Government-issued ID – UMID, Philippine Passport, Philippine Driver’s License
    – 1 Proof of Address – Utility bill, Credit card statement, BIR 2316, Voter’s Registration Certificate, Driver’s License, UMID, NBI Clearance, Condo dues billing, Insurance billing, SOA Delivery receipt (via Lazada, Zalora, Shopee) showing your name and address

  3. Click ‘Open an Account’

    Input the following information:
    – Legal name (first name, middle name, last name)
    – Email address
    – Contact number
    – 5-digit PIN
    Prepare your mobile near you for the verification code will be sent on your contact number.

  4. Take photo of yourself and ID

    Selfie verification and take a photo of valid ID

  5. Take photo of your ID

    Use your camera to take photo of your ID

  6. Enter Address

    Put in your residential and/or mailing address

  7. Enter Additional Information

    Add Work information, Company details, Tax information, etc.

  8. Signature

    Write your signature in white paper and take photo.

  9. DONE!

    You already have an ING account and you’re ready to start banking!

CIMB

CIMB is a global virtual bank based in Malaysia and available in more than 16 global markets.

CIMB has multiple banking solutions on their OCTO mobile app, including UpSave Account, GSave account (in partnership with Gcash), among others.

CIMB Features:

  • 4% interest rate
  • No required minimum balance
  • UpSave – Free Life Insurance for up to P2 million with a minimum average balance of P100,000
  • Fast and Fast Plus – Free debit card for ATM transactions

How to Open a CIMB Upsave Account (link)

  • Download CIMB App
    Download the app in Google PlayStore for Android and AppStore for iOs.
  • Open Account
    Input the following information:
    – Legal name (first name, middle name, surname)
    – Mother’s maiden name
    – Email address
    – Mobile number
    – Username
  • Take photo of yourself and ID
    Selfie verification and take a photo of valid ID
  • Digital Signature
    Write your digital signature on your phone screen
  • DONE!
    You already have a CIMB account and you’re ready to start virtual banking

GSave

In partnership with CIMB, Gcash has launched GSave with high interest rates and easy access to deposit and withdrawals via the Gcash app.

GSave Features:

  • 4.1% interest rate (minus 20% withholding tax) until July 31, 2020, 3.1% after
  • No required minimum balance
  • Free Life Insurance up to P1 million on accounts with P100,000 Average Daily Balance

You can also connect your GSave and CIMB PH App to get the 10% interest promo for the first month! Promo is valid until December 31, 2020.

Read more: Gcash Invest vs. GSave

How to Open a GSave Account

  • Download Gcash App
  • Open Gcash and click on the Save Money icon
  • After filling out the requested info, a confirmation will say GSave Registration Success
  • DONE!
    You will then get an SMS informing you of your GSave account number. You can Withdraw Funds, Make a Deposit and Schedule Auto-Deposit

Other Digital Banks in the Philippines

  • UnionBank. Awarded ‘Best Digital Bank’ for three straight years (2017-2019) by Asia Money. Very easy check deposit capabilities – just take a photo!
  • Komo by Eastwest Bank is set to open for business this year with 3% interest per annum
  • DiskarTech by RCBC aims to provide ‘sachet banking services’ to millions of ‘unbanked’ Filipinos with a 3.25% interest rate.
  • TONIK Digital Bank is a Singapore-based digital bank and the first to receive a digital-only banking license by BSP (Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas)

Sources:


More on Banking

More Posts on Personal Finance

Latest Blog Posts

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *