The best bank in the Philippines to open a savings account is the bank that fulfills your purposes or reasons in opening a savings account.
Do you want to save? Then find the one with the highest interest rate. Will you use it to receive remittance? Then find the one with many remittance partners abroad and has no maintaining balance. Will you often transact in person? Then find the bank nearest your home or work that you like.
1. Banks offering the highest interest rates for regular savings
2. My own best banks in the Philippines to open an account and why
3. Most popular banks, based on number of app downloads
4. Most popular banks, based on number of Google searches
Banks giving the highest interest rates for regular savings
Currently, digital banks and digital accounts are promoting their brands so they’re giving much higher interest rates, compared to the 0.10% or 0.125% rate given by most banks. They also don’t require higher balances before giving interests.
Below are digital banks and digital accounts offering the biggest annual interest rates, as of August 2021:
- ING Bank — 4%
- Tonik — 4% to 6% (You can open up to 5 separate savings stashes or containers)
- DiskarTech by RCBC — 3.25% (DiskarTech is a basic savings account, so you can save only up to 50,000)
- GSave of GCash and CIMB — 2.6% to 4%, interest paid out monthly (Maximum deposit balance is 50,000. GSave is offered by CIMB in partnership with GCash)
- UpSave by CIMB — 2.5% to 4%, with free life insurance if conditions are fulfilled
- Komo by Eastwest Bank — 2.5%
- Check out Rural Banks near you. They offer fairly higher interest rates. CardBank and Card MRI offer 1.5%. Cebuana Rural Bank offers 0.30%.
Some of the newer apps are experiencing glitches. It will be good to follow their Facebook pages or join their Facebook groups so you can see what others have done to solve similar concerns.
My own best bank in the Philippines to open a savings account and why
I have accounts in several banks to serve my different purposes. Based on my personal experiences, the best bank for an atm savings account is BDO. Next are BPI. Metrobank, Eastwest and Landbank/OFBank. I’m sure you have other banks as your BEST and you also have your own reasons.
- There’s a BDO branch and 4 BDO ATMs near our house and I can easily find one everywhere I go. There are more than 1,400 branches and more than 4,400 ATMs around the Philippines, as of today.
- There are many BDO branches that are open on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. Super convenient whenever I need to claim a remittance or payment asap.
- BDO allows releases in US dollars of US dollar remittances sent through Xoom. I can get US dollars over the counter. I can also have the US dollar remittance sent directly to my BDO US dollar account. Other bank partners convert US dollar remittances to peso deposits. Siempre pag kino-convert ng bank, they use their rate na malayong mababa kesa sa rate used by popular money changers. The other bank that allows US dollar release over the counter is Metrobank.
- BDO’s maximum atm withdrawal amount per day is flexible. I-set mo ng mababa o mataas depende sa sitwasyon. You can go to your mobile Security Management feature and set your limits.
- At the BDO bank branches that I’ve gone to, there’s someone checking the flow of customers from time to time. Either yong guard or bank officer. Bakit mahaba ang pila? Meron bang transaction na mas mabilis sa ATM na lang? Bakit merong nakatayong tao don na matagal na?
- The BDO mobile app has an OTP Generator. Much better than waiting for the BDO-texted OTP.
- I was able to open a US dollar account with only $100. This is a Kabayan US dollar account and it’s only available for those with recent receipts showing US dollar remittances from relatives abroad.
- BDO, of course, has other good products, like BDO Kabayan peso account, BDO Credit Cards’ EasyPay Cash Out short-term loan and BDO Rewards. It’s also the biggest bank in the Philippines based on assets, deposits, and capital, but it’s the first 6 reasons above why I say BDO is the best bank in the Philippines to open a savings account.
- Sentimental reasons. Parang first love. It’s my first payroll ATM savings account. Yong US-based employer namin chose BPI because at that time, it was only BPI that was issuing ATM debit cards and installing ATM machines. It’s also the first one to launch debit card swiping in supermarkets via its Express Teller system and also the first one to accept cash deposits via ATM machines.
- To long-time BPI credit cardholders, even those of zero-annual-fee cardholders, BPI offers short-term loans with much lower interest rates compared to other banks’ credit cards. I’ve used their loans to buy second-hand cars and avoided high interest rates offered by banks and the costly loan processing and chattel mortgage fees.
- BPI also has lots of ATMs and branches, with more than 1,176 branches in the Philippines, Hong Kong, and Europe, and close to 3,000 ATMs and Cash Accept Machines.
- Metrobank’s zero-annual-fee credit card also offers short-term loans with lower interest rates to long-time cardholders.
- Lots of ATMs too. Metrobank runs 960 branches, more than 2,300 ATMs, over 180 Cash Accept machines and more than 30 branches overseas.
Why Eastwest Bank?
- Eastwest Bank has at least 18 branches in the Muntinlupa-Bacoor-Las Pinas-San Pedro area where we live. It also has a branch near my sister’s house in Fairview. Most of these branches also have good parking.
- Among banks, Eastwest Bank gives the highest exchange rate for US dollars. Oftentimes it’s higher than those used by popular money changers like Sanry’s or Czarina. My online work is paid in US dollars, so I’m always looking for money changers or banks giving the best foreign exchange rates. I hope Eastwest maintains their higher level of US dollar exchange rates forever.
- 5 pesos only for Instapay transfer! And has been FREE since the start of the pandemic until September 2021. Might be extended too.
- Transactions are updated instantly on Eastwest’s online banking. Some of the biggest banks do not do this. You wait for the following day.
Why Landbank and OFBank?
- Landbank is among the best bank for people receiving SSS benefits, as it has special relationship with SSS. The only not-good-thing for me is that it has only a few ATMs in our area. I remedy this though by just transferring money online from Landbank to BDO or BPI, both with lots of ATMs.
- I’m so glad about how Landbank is growing OFBank, which is becoming very popular among OFWs. Overseas Filipinos can open an OFBank account, make transfers and check their balances while abroad. There’s a big OFBank Facebook group named Overseas Filipino Bank (OFBank) – Depositor’s Group in which members are praising OFBank and sharing helpful info.
25 Most Popular Philippine Banks on Mobile, Based on App Downloads from Google Play, as of August 12, 2021
|Bank||No. of App Downloads|
from Google Play
|No. of Reviews|
on Google Play
|18||Card MRI RBI||100k+||989||3.6|
*Ranking based on no. of downloads first, then no. of stars, then no. of reviews
*HSBC has 5 million plus downloads, but its app serves several countries.
Most Popular Philippine Banks, Based on Number of Google Searches per Month
This ranking below is not accurate because there are other banks of the same acronyms or names in other countries. But it could give us a bit of an idea about these Philippine banks’ popularity on mobile.
- BDO — 1.22 Million searches
- BDO Unibank — 33,100 searches
- Bdo Bank — 9,900
- BPI — 1.22 M
- Bank of the Philippine Islands — 40,500
- BPI Banko — 1,900
- PNB — 1 M
- Philippine National Bank — 27,100
- Union Bank — 1 M
- Metrobank — 673k
- Security Bank — 301k
- Eastwest Bank — 246k
- Eastwest — 110k
- Robinsons — 246k
- Robinsons Bank — 33,100
- Komo — 246k
- Landbank — 201k
- AUB — 135k
- RCBC — 90,500
- UCPB — 90,500
- China Bank — 60,500
- Bank of Commerce — 60,500
- PSbank — 49,500
- Tonik — 49,500
- Cebuana — 40,500
- Cebuana Bank — 480
- Diskartech — 33,100
- Asia United Bank — 22,200
- China Bank Savings — 14,800
- PBCom — 12,100
- CardBank — 5,400
- ING Philippines — 5,400
- OFBank — 2,400
- Overseas Filipino Bank — 1,300
- Eastwest Rural Bank — 2,400
- CardMRI — 1,600
These banks below have millions of Google searches because they are global brands:
- Citibank — 47M
- ING Bank — 7M
- ING — 6.12M
- Maybank — 1.83M
- CIMB — 1.22M
- CIMB Bank — 246k
Related Article: Digital Banks in the Philippines