Simplii Financial vs. Tangerine: Which Online Bank is Better for Canadians?

Simplii Financial vs. Tangerine: Which Online Bank is Better For Canadians?

Simplii Financial and Tangerine are two heavy-weights among Canada's most popular online-only banks. There's no wonder why, either: both digital financial institutions are neck-and-neck for the title of the best digital bank in Canada.

This WealthRocket article goes over all of the must-knows between Simplii Financial vs. Tangerine. The two direct-to-consumer banks duke it out over who better serves financially savvy Canadians.

Table of Contents

Simplii Financial vs. Tangerine: Spending, Saving, and Investing

The truth is, Simplii Financial and Tangerine are nearly identical in how they operate and what they have to offer Canadians in search of low-cost banking products. However, several options and perks are more beneficial for certain customers than others, and it’s a good move to know before signing on the virtual dotted line. Below, you’ll find a review for both Simplii Financial and Tangerine, with a detailed comparison of each bank.
Feature

Simplii Financial

Tangerine

Transactions
Free, Unlimited
Free, Unlimited
Interac e-Transfers
Free, Unlimited
Free, Unlimited
ATM Network
CIBC
Scotiabank, Global ATM Network
Savings Accounts
Traditional, TFSA, RRSP, RRIF
Traditional, TFSA, RRSP, RRIF
Investment Options
GICs, Mutual Funds
GICs, Mutual Funds
Promotions
$200 until October 31, 2020*
$250 and 2.50% interest for 182 days*
Mobile App
Yes
Yes
Available Quebec
Non
Oui
Tangerine Bank Logo

Tangerine Bank offers an exclusive $150 sign-up bonus with no monthly fess or transaction limits and up to 2.1% interest bonus

Tangerine Bank Review

Tangerine is one of Canada’s leading digital banks. While it stands out for its bright orange logo, it’s exceptional banking products take the cake for all the attention it’s receiving.

Tangerine provides most (if not all) of the same services and products that commercial banks offer, including various spending, saving, and investing products.

Spending products range from a no-fee chequing account to various credit card options. Saving products allow customers to save money with various registered and non-registered accounts. Investing products include GICs and mutual funds.

Tangerine offers borrowing options, too, including lines of credit, loan, and mortgage options.

Tangerine is the digital banking branch of Scotiabank, one of Canada’s Big Five banks.

Let’s take a closer look at what Tangerine has to offer.

Tangerine Bank at a glance:

  • Monthly fee: None
  • Debit transactions: Free, Unlimited
  • Branches: None
  • Interac e-transfer: Free, Unlimited
  • Account types: Chequing, savings (registered and non-registered)
  • Sign-up bonus: $250* & 2.50% interest on savings accounts for 182 days.
  • Cheques: Yes
  • Mobile app: iOS and Android
  • International money transfers:
  • Available in Quebec?: Oui

* Conditions Apply

Tangerine Bank No-Fee Daily Chequing Account

Tangerine’s No-Fee Daily Chequing Account is everything that it claims to be: a no-fee chequing account with no minimum balance requirements, no monthly fees, and no transaction limits.

The no-fee bank account allows customers to send money for free using Interac e-transfers fees. There are also unlimited bill payments, deposits, and withdrawals.

Customers can access thousands of Scotiabank ATMs across Canada.

But it doesn’t stop there! Tangerine and Scotiabank are both members of the Global ATM Alliance, allowing customers to access the ATMs of participating banks in other countries at no cost and often at a lower exchange rate.

Some participating banks include Bank of America in the United States. Scotiabank in South America, BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank, and Westpac, across Africa, Europe, and Asia, and many other financial institutions worldwide.

Tangerine is a Schedule 1 bank and a member of the CDIC.

Tangerine Bank Savings Account

Tangerine offers your standard selection of registered and non-registered savings accounts.

Some of these options include the traditional savings account, Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA), Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP), and Registered Retirement Income Fund (RRIF).

Account Rate
Savings, TFSA, RRSP, RRIF
0.20%*

*Rates current as of August 2020.

Tangerine Bank GICs

Tangerine offers a handful of investing options, including GICs. Terms from thirty days to five years in length and include various registered and non-registered GIC options. Some investments include traditional GICs along with RRSP GICs, RRIF GICs, and TFSA GICs. All Tangerine GIC rates are listed below.
Term 90 Day 180 Day 270 Day 1 Year 1.5 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Year
Rate
0.5%
0.9%
0.95%
0.95%
1.0%
1.05%
1.15%
1.2%
1.25%

*Rates current as of August 2020.

Simplii Financial Review

Formerly known as PC Financial, Simplii Financial is a full-fledged financial institution that operates entirely online. While no physical branches exist, the bank offers most of the same products as any other bank or credit union. Simplii Financial’s most popular products include a chequing account, registered and non-registered savings accounts, Guaranteed Investment Certificates (GICs), mutual funds, and a Visa credit card. Other financial products offered by Simplii include personal loans and lines of credit, as well as mortgage options. Simplii Financial is the digital subsidiary of CIBC, meaning customers can access over 1,000 CIBC ATMs to withdraw or deposit cash or cheques. Since Simplii Financial does not offer branches, it allows the bank to offer online and telephone customer service. Simplii Financial is a safe, legitimate bank. In fact, Simplii Financial is a Schedule 1 bank and a member of the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC). Learn more about Simplii Financial’s personal finance products below.

Simplii Financial at glance:

  • Monthly fee: None
  • Debit transactions: Free, Unlimited
  • ATM Network: CIBC
  • Interac e-transfers: Free, Unlimited
  • Account types: Savings, TFSA, RRSP
  • Sign-up bonus: $200 until October 31, 2020*
  • Cheques: Yes
  • Mobile app: Yes
  • International money transfers: Yes
  • Available in Quebec?: Non

* Conditions Apply

Simplii Financial No-Fee Chequing Account

Simplii Financial’s most popular product is the Simplii Financial No Fee Chequing Account. It is one of Canada’s best and most flexible chequing accounts, as it comes with no monthly or annual fees. Period. The account offers unlimited transfers, deposits, and withdrawals. It also offers unlimited transactions, free Interac e-transfers, and unlimited bill payments. Direct deposit is also available. The account comes with a free debit card and chequebook and is compatible with Apple, Google, and Samsung Pay. The Simplii Financial mobile app is where the bank shines. The state-of-the-art banking app comes with a sleek user interface that includes cutting-edge features like fingerprint recognition and mobile cheque deposit. Simplii Financial is the digital subsidiary of CIBC, which means Simplii customers can access over 1,000 CIBC ATMs and take advantage of free cheque, cash deposits, and cash withdrawal.

Simplii Financial Savings Account

Simplii offers registered and non-registered savings accounts. Some of the accounts offered include Tax-free Savings Accounts (TFSAs), Registered Retirement Savings Accounts (RRSPs), and the traditional savings account. Savings accounts with Simplii Financial work like any other registered accounts. While some banks or credit unions place an allowance every month on withdrawals and deposits, Simplii permits unlimited withdrawals and deposits with no minimum balance or contribution requirements.
Account Rate
Savings, TFSA, RRSP, RRIF
0.20%*

*Rates current as of August 2020.

Simplii Financial GICs

Simplii Financial offers both registered and non-registered Guaranteed Investment Certificates (GICs), including traditional GICs and RRSP GICs. Both registered and non-registered GICs come at the same rate. Simplii Financial also offers GIC laddering options, which allow customers to diversify their investments with no risk. All GIC terms range between one year to five years in term deposit length.
Term 1 Year 2 Years 3 Years 4 Years 5 Years
Rate
0.89%
0.99%
1.04%
1.19%
1.24%

*Rates current as of August 2020.

The winner: Simplii Financial vs. Tangerine

The truth is, Simplii Financial and Tangerine are both equally exceptional options for online banking, which is why we’re calling this spar a tie. And since they’re both entirely free to use, there’s no reason you can’t get both. You can use both accounts for a different reason: one for daily banking and one for long saving and investing.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, both Simplii Financial and Tangerine are digital banks and completely operate online.

There are no physical branches, which allows both banks to provide low-cost services to their customers through online and telephone banking.

Without the overhead of physical branches, online banks like Simplii and Tangerine can provide their services at no cost, unlike major banks, whose overhead and expenses are much higher.

Yes! Both Tangerine and Simplii offer registered accounts, including the Registered Retirement Savings Plan.

Some additional RRSP options include RRSP mutual funds and RRSP GICs, both offered by Simplii and Tangerine.

Registered accounts like RRSPs and TFSAs allow Canadians to maximize their earning potential while minimizing their tax burden.

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