N26 Bank Account

N26: The best bank account for newcomer and foreigners in Austria

The advantages at a glance:

  • Free bank account with no monthly minimum input

    Free prepaid Mastercard credit card

  • Free worldwide cash withdrawals in any ATM with Mastercard
  • English Banking with Mobile app
  • Modern banking facility with a smartphone

About N26

Formerly called NUMBER26, N26 is a modern banking facility provided in partnership with Wirecard Bank. Since Wirecard bank is a bank governed by German Law, your account is protected by the German Deposit Protection Fund.

N26 bank account

Terms at a glance

Account management:
Cost: €0 pm
Conditions:
Cards:
EC-/Maestro:
Credit Card: Mastercard – Free Prepaid Credit Card
Interest:
Credit interest checking account:
Credit interest credit card:
Overdraft interest:
Banking:
Website:
Banking options: Smartphone App / Internet banking
Free Cash:
Austria: free in all ATM machines accepting Mastercard
Abroad: free worldwide (no transaction charges on withdrawal)
To apply

Free Bank account

Number26 checking account is free of cost. It provides all the facilities of a normal bank account such as IBAN number and transactions. There is no minumum monthly deposit needed.

Free Mastercard with free worldwide withdrawals

Number26 mastercard_500x350You get a free nice looking transparent Mastercard along with the bank account. This is a prepaid credit card, therefore, does not allow overdrafts. You can only withdraw or use the balance you have on your account. Therefore, it is technically like a debit card, but since it has the Mastercard, you can use it to make transactions wherever Mastercard is accepted. Most importantly, it allows free cash withdrawal at any ATM worldwide that accept Mastercard. There might be some ATM’s which may charge a fee, but according to Number26 they are only about 2%. Otherwise, it is free to use the card in the other 98% of the ATM’s. The cash withdrawal in other currencies are subject to exchange rate applied by MasterCard exchange and is generally better than if you change money abroad. There are no currency transaction fees charged by the bank either. In summary, free cash withdrawal worldwide. No transaction charges, no currency conversion charges, no nothing.

English mobile banking App

Called Europe’s Most Modern bank, Number26 provides a smartphone app for making all the banking functions on the smartphone. And it is in English. You can check your account balance, make payments, temporary block the card and manage your expenses with the smartphone app. This app is one of the best banking app provided by a bank. Not only does it contain the normal functions required for any banking service, it also contains functions such as budgeting. However, note that you need a smartphone to open and use the account. The mobile app can be downloaded and used on iPhone with iOS 7 or newer, or Android phone running with Android 4.3 or newer. So if you do not have a phone with the above versions, you cannot complete the process or need to find other ways, possibly by having a virtual android phone. However, beware that you cannot use all the account features like deposit cash, for which you need access to the app at all times.

 

Fast Account opening – less documents required

As already mentioned, since your credit rating is not checked, the account opening process is fast and the documentation required in minimum. In fact, you can open a bank account in 8 minutes. The documents required also are minimum. The requirements are:

  1. A document for Identity verification. This could be your passport irrespective of the country.
  2. Have an address in Germany, Austria, Greece, Spain, Slovakia, Ireland, France or Italy. You do not need to provide a proof of this address (Anmeldung) but you should just be able to receive documents which will be sent to this address.
  3. Over 18 years of age.

If you meet these requirements, you can open a bank account. For residents in Germany and Austria, you can use PostIdent

Complete online registration is also possible if you select VideoIdent. However, note that not all Identity documents can be verified using VideoIdent.

For non-residents also

Update Dec.2015:  It is now open to residents of Greece, Spain , Slovakia , Ireland , France , Italy. So if you are a resident in any of the above countries, you can open a Number26 account.

Number26 is working on also servicing residents in more European countries throughout the next year depending on customer demand. Therefore, if you are from a European country please so that Number26 can determine the demand from the country. Also, pre-registering will also give you advance access when the service is rolled in your country.

Cash26 – Cash deposit and withdrawal

Since it is an online bank, you do not have branches where you can deposit or withdraw cash. However, using CASH26, you can deposit cash in any of the 3000 locations in Germany. The bank is in collaboration with different supermarket chains where you can deposit cash into your account or get cash. This includes one of the biggest supermarket chain PENNY and REAL with has stores in a large number of locations in Germany.

Overdraft facility

Overdraft means you can use more than the balance in your account and an interest is charged to you on the excess amount. The current rate of overdraft is charged at 8.9 %. NUMBER26 offers an overdraft facility up to €2000, however it is only open to customers with a residence registered in Germany and depends on the credit score. This means that if you apply for an overdraft facility, the bank will check your credit score from the credit rating agency SCHUFA and make a record on it.

The advantages at a glance:

  • Free bank account with no monthly minimum input
  • Free prepaid Mastercard credit card
  • Free worldwide cash withdrawals in any ATM with Mastercard
  • English Banking with Mobile app
  • Modern banking facility with smartphone
  • No Credit check – No Schufa records

Click here to open a Number26 account now

Few Disadvantages

Although this bank account it is as perfect as it can get, for an objective review of Number26 it is also important to point out some drawbacks, or you may call shortfalls of the account. These are not major and even other banks have these, so you can live with them without affecting your life too much. Here goes the list

  • No EC/Maestro Card as of now, but they say Maestro card will be introduced very soon. Some shops in Germany may not accept credit cards and insist on EC or Maestro cards. But you can always withdraw free cash and purchase using cash as an alternative till then.
  • Like all internet banks, due to the lack of branches you cannot deposit cash directly. However, you can still deposit through another bank although it might involve costs. You can now deposit and withdraw cash at more than 3000 locations using Cash26.
  • There is a limit on daily/weekly ATM cash withdrawal and card use. Although the limit is large enough for normal use, some customer might need a higher limit
  • No overdraft facility. But it has its advantages too such as it does not need credit check. Overdraft facility is now available with a Number26 bank.
  • No interest on the deposit. Unlike DKB bank, the balance maintained in your account does not give you any interest. But, they are honest and say that this is how they make money and are able to provide a free bank account and Free Mastercard with all these advantages.

Click here to open a Number26 account now