Top 10 Most Reliable Neobanks In The World – Plus A Bonus Challenger Bank

Bank Accounts, Company Formations, Tax Planning, Residency Solutions, and more
CALL US ON +971 50 4467827 - TO SETUP YOUR NON-CRS COMPANY STRUCTURE IN DUBAI.
NeoBanks - Online banking made easy.

When it comes to traditional banks, all you can imagine is clean and posh buildings, as well as good-looking people dressed in suits and elegant dresses. Then, things may often go wrong – lots of paperwork to do anything, as well as ATMs giving you all sorts of errors. However, a new wave of banks aims to change all these things.

The so-called fintech – financial technology – startups tend to change the way people bank. Also known as neobanks, these financial institutions tend to overcome all the stereotypes in the banking industry. Most importantly, they operate in a digital manner. They offer low fees, better experiences and a seamless online venture.

Now, before digging into deeper details and providing some names regarding the best neobanks for offshore entrepreneurs, there might be a few things you need to know in order to become familiar with this concept. You need to find out how these banks work, what they do and what their operating principles are.


Understanding the neobank concept​


Neobanks are often referred to as challenger banks. No matter what name you find on a bank’s official website, these terms refer to the exact same things – there are no differences. These fintech companies provide software and applications to ease the online banking experience – mostly aimed at those who use their mobile gadgets for everything.

Different neobanks are specialized in different banking products. Some of them are after checking accounts, while others have specialized in savings accounts. Of course, you can also find general banks where you can do pretty much everything you would in a traditional bank. They are more transparent, even though some of them can partner with traditional banks.

Neobanks showed up during the financial crisis that challenged the whole world between 2007 and 2009. They are mostly known as neobanks in the USA, while the UK refers to them as challenger banks. Other countries may use different terms. The general idea is fairly simple – if there are no brick and mortar buildings involved, you usually deal with a neobank.

Such companies tend to change the way people see the banking sector. The system is changing – no doubts about it. It is a modern trend. Try to see it as Uber in the taxi industry or Airbnb in the hospitality industry. Now that you understand the concept, what are the top-rated neobanks out there and what kind of services should you expect?



blackcatcard" data-toc="1" >BlackCatCard​

BlackCatCard is a neobank providing access to bank accounts in the European Union. It also provides access to Mastercard, which is accepted all over the world. The company is fully licensed as an EMI by the Malta Financial Services Authority. It offers two different types of banking solutions – both for personal and business uses.

The neobank provides a few bonuses to its users. You will get a certain percentage of what you have in the account, yet there are some conditions regarding how much money you keep in the account and what the monthly card turnover is. Bonuses are given on a monthly basis and there is a limit – up to €100,000, so more than enough.

Using the card will also give you some bonuses. You will get cashback for card purchases, whether online or offline – 0.1%. Of course, ATM withdrawals and transfers to other accounts are not included, but just actual payments. Another good thing is that unlike other banks, BlackCatCard does not charge a fee for opening an account. New customers will also get a welcome bonus.

Fees are small and easy to deal with. Most common operations are free of charge, though. For example, there is no maintenance fee, so there are no random monthly payments. Then, you can make five free payments on a monthly basis. Starting with the sixth one, you will pay a tiny, insignificant fee. Finally, it is worth mentioning the friendly customer service too.


Golden Suisse​

Golden Suisse is another excellent neobank that accepts customers from all over the world. Registered in Switzerland, the bank provides access to a wide variety of services and offers excellent customer service – knowledgeable and easy to reach, without having to wait for hours over the phone or in a live chat room.

It is worth noting that Golden Suisse is not suitable for everyone. While its products – like cards – can be used worldwide, the neobank accepts customers from particular countries only. Most importantly, you need to be based in Europe. All countries in the European Union are accepted – including those with other currencies than the euro. Furthermore, clients from Norway and Switzerland are also allowed.

There are no hidden fees and random expenses associated with a Golden Suisse account. Clients will not have to pay a maintenance fee. Also, loading the card is free of charge, which is another plus. Furthermore, you can use the card all over the world to make purchases without paying any fees – this does not include cash withdrawal, for example.

The bank is mostly aimed at those dealing with silver or gold, but not only. For instance, you can load your card anytime free of charge by selling silver or gold – excellent market prices and no extra fees at all. Finally, according to the bank, everything about your account is private and never shared with third parties whatsoever, so you get a bit of privacy as well.


Vialet​

If you like the idea of using Mastercard all over the world and making payments anywhere, anytime without being charged some random fees in the SEPA zone, Vialet is an extremely reliable option that will give you a free IBAN account. You will be able to start using the account straight away – after all, the first card does not cost any money at all.

There are no maintenance fees associated with the account, so forget about those monthly charges that make no sense whatsoever. You can have one account and while you can load the card with all kinds of currencies, everything is converted into euro. The bank does not allow joint accounts, but only personal accounts. Furthermore, the card is accepted all over the world.

You can apply for the account and use it with your mobile device – simple as that. Money transfers and SEPA payments are free of charge. The card is connected to the application, so you will get a notification whenever you receive, send or spend money – excellent to keep on top of your expenses. You can make contactless payments or simply use the pin code.

In terms of security, you have a 3D secure system, so your online purchases are always safe. Besides, should you misplace or lose your card, you can always block it. It takes seconds only. You can do it over the application, rather than call the customer service or wait in queues. A few taps on your mobile device will get the card blocked straight away – how convenient is that?


Tap​

Compared to other neobanks, Tap targets a different category of customers. Sure, you can use it as any other traditional bank – fiat currencies, payments and all sorts of operations. But then, if you are into digital coins too, Tap is mostly aimed at those who deal with cryptocurrencies. It aims to build a bridge between cryptocurrencies and fiat money and it does a pretty good job at it.

Basically, the account will give you a Mastercard, which is widely accepted all over the world. If you have cryptocurrencies, you can load them on your card. A quick and cost-efficient conversion will be made whenever you use the card, making it super simple to use your digital coins in real life. At the moment, Tap only accepts BTC, ETH, LTC, HT and XTP.

There are three different types of cards you can get and each of them comes with its own particularities – Free, Black and Titanium. Differences apply in the fees, which tend to be small regardless of the card you get. Other than that, limits are also different. Obviously, the titanium card brings in more benefits than the other alternatives.

Tap is pretty straightforward and will not hit you with hidden or unexpected fees and charges. Simply put, there are no fees to use the card. There are no maintenance fees and there are no charges to load it up either. There are no fees to issue the card and no minimum deposit limits. As long as there is a balance, you can use it.


Kontist​

Just like most other banks out there, Kontist has a specific target – a particular type of customer. It is not, however, limited to that type. Generally speaking, the bank is aimed at freelancers and self-employed individuals because it also offers accounting services based on your finances. But then, anyone can use this bank and take advantage of its services.

Registering an account is fairly simple and can be done over the official application – available on both Android and iOS. While you do not have to be German to use the bank, you do need a German address. Practically, the bank is aimed at German residents. The good news is you can open an account within minutes only.

While not licensed as a bank, Kontist is partnered with solarisBank for its banking services. It works like a subsidiary. When it comes to accounting and bookkeeping, Kontist has partnered with Debitoor, so you can keep track of invoices, receipts and tax contributions automatically. While aimed at those who live in Germany, the nationality is irrelevant – the app is available in both German and English.

There are more types of accounts you can get and each of them comes with different specifications. The basic account is free of charge and will not cost you anything. Other accounts – such as premium or duo – will come with monthly fees, but they also provide access to more features. Clients can also opt for business accounts – mostly for sole traders and small businesses.

Bnc10​

Bnc10 is pretty straightforward and easy to understand. Get the mobile application – whether you have an Android or iOS device. Sign up within five minutes and you can use your account straight away. You can register on the official website, but doing it over the app is much simpler and quite straightforward – no experience needed.

The account is mostly aimed at those who travel a lot and want to keep their main bank account secret. You can basically get this card with you anywhere and use it wherever card payments are accepted. The best part about it? There are no fees to use the account for payments, but you can also skip the exchange rate fee. As for the actual exchange, rates are fair.

If you are in need of a modern EU IBAN, Bnc10 will give you a Spanish IBAN. You can then load your account in a few different ways. You can send money through wire or bank transfers with no issues at all. Loading the account is also free of charge. In fact, most things are free, yet a few fees will also apply – they are way smaller compared to traditional banks though.

Bnc10 is backed by a Spanish bank and asks for ID verification. The process is quick and simple. The customer service is knowledgeable and easy to access without any problems at all. Moreover, there are different contact channels. The product is relatively new and still developing, so residents outside Europe will face some restrictions at the moment.

Neon​

Based in Switzerland, Neon provides access to pretty much free banking. Fees are extremely low and apply to very few things. Follow a few rules and you will never have to pay them. Account opening and maintenance are free. Besides, the same goes for all your CHF payments. You may need to pay for the card delivery though – yet, it depends on what type of card you get.

Make multiple free payments and withdraw cash twice a month without paying any fees. Withdrawing money abroad will also come with a small fee. There are some limitations, but they are less likely to affect the average individual – for instance, you can only spend 10,000CHF per month. There are no fancy bells, whistles and features, but you do not need any of those.

Instead, Neon has partnered with a few different companies – mostly aimed at those living in Switzerland. For example, you could get cheap car insurance, the possibility to withdraw cash in stores, or benefit from sustainable investing opportunities. In the end, some restrictions apply to those who do not live in Switzerland though.

Imagin​

Established in Spain, Imagin gives you more than just an easy application to manage your money. The ecofriendly bank is basically a subsidiary of Caixa Bank and runs digitally. The bank account is only available in one currency – euro. However, you can make transfers in other currencies – from and to your account – at a fair exchange rate.

The bank allows mobile payments through its Visa card. It is prepaid. You can load it via bank or wire transfers, but also with other cards – with these thoughts in mind, it is excellent for online shopping or traveling, as it adds an extra layer of security. Everything is manageable through the mobile application – useful for both iOS and Android users.

The best part about Imagin is the possibility to use the account without any actual fees. For instance, you will not be charged for opening the account or monthly maintenance. You can also use it for free to withdraw cash in Spain, but also to make payments anywhere in the world – cash withdrawals and transfers come with some small fees when abroad though.

Klarna​

Klarna is a neobank with a different approach. It is aimed at those who love shopping – and especially those who love to spread their payments or perhaps start buying later. Basically, you need to be responsible with the money and avoid reckless shopping, as the debt will add up. But other than that, the neobank has partnered with multiple retailers to allow schemes like buy now pay later.

Klarna is not aimed at shoppers only, but it is good to know you have this option if you need something urgently and you do not have the money upfront. It allows you to open an account and load it up. It is basically like a prepaid card. There are no monthly or yearly maintenance fees, so you can only use it when in need of an extra card, rather than just to avoid fees or anything like that.

In terms of restrictions, Klarna is aimed at those living in the UK – regardless of nationality, so proof of address will be needed. There are no major fees associated with Klarna, but there are rumors about certain types of accounts about to start charging monthly fees for maintenance. Other than that, opening an account is a matter of minutes – you can do it over the official app or through the website.

Monzo​

Established in the UK, Monzo has become one of the world’s leading neobanks. It offers more types of accounts – current accounts, premium packages, joint accounts and even an account for youngsters – 16 and 17 years old. There is one major eligibility criteria to remember – you need to be a resident of the UK in order to sign up with this neobank.

The app is quite versatile and allows good budgeting of your money. You can break your spending down, set up with some spending limits for different services and so on. You also have a pot feature – save change with most transactions, but also earn some interest on your savings. Then, if you get your salary into this account, you will be paid one day upfront to ensure you do not miss any payments.

There are not too many fees associated with your Monzo account. There are two major circumstances you must remember. You can withdraw cash abroad, as long as it is less than £200 for a current account or less than £400 on a premium account. Exceed this limit and you will pay 3% in fees. Moreover, an overdraft will cost you 50p per day – not a lot, but worth knowing about it.

Premium accounts come with a few bundles to choose from. You can manage the money with direct debit notifications as well. Spending on the card abroad does not incur any fees and local ATM withdrawals are unlimited.


And a bonus neobank…​

The above-mentioned options are probably the most reputable neobanks out there. Still undecided? Here is a bonus for you to check out.

Aion is an all-inclusive neobank established in Belgium. It provides one of the highest interest rates on savings accounts in Europe, as well as easy access to various types of investments. The account comes with a fee, but this is pretty much it. It only allows customers from a bunch of European countries – Austria, Denmark, Finland, the UK, France, Italy, Poland, Romania, Germany and a few others.

You can start banking with Aion straight away. If you have a smartphone, download the app and sign up. You will need to enter your phone number and get an invitation link. There are two types of membership, with the basic one costing under €4 a month. The premium one is €19 a month and comes with plenty of appealing perks.

While mostly aimed at people who want to save, Aion is suitable for everyday uses as well and offers a few different types of accounts. Everything is done digitally, so forget about card readers and branch visits.

Conclusion​

As a short final conclusion, neobanks are more accessible than ever. The most reputable ones are backed by traditional financial institutions, so your money is safe. Many of them allow international customers – ideal for offshore applications and not only. Some others restrict their clients to certain locations. No matter where you are or where you want to go, any of the above-mentioned solutions will give you a good alternative to traditional banks.

Here is a thread discussing these and many more banks already List of Neobanks
 
Last edited:

JosephLL

Active Member
If anyone outside of EEA ever succeeded in opening an account in any of those mentioned or any other "neobank" (which I seriously doubt) please share for others to know. Thanx.
 

Mencjusz

New member
Does any of mentioned accepts SWIFT wires from outside EU? That is one major issue with many EU neobanks. They only accept SEPA.
 

JohnnyDoe

Mentor Group Gold
BlackCat is good, so far no problems with it, also with crypto.
Aion too is good.
The other ones mentioned did not work for me: either they rejected my application or closed the account without any good reason.
 

erni

Mentor Group Gold
BlackCat is good, so far no problems with it, also with crypto.
Aion too is good.
The other ones mentioned did not work for me: either they rejected my application or closed the account without any good reason.
how long have you used them?
 

uplana

Corporate Services
Mentor Group Gold

Forester

Silver Member

lostguy

Mentor Group Gold
Just FWIW, Monzo accept UK residents only – both for personal as for business acounts.
same for companies - UK LTD with substance but with foreign UBO ?
 

Latest Threads

Top