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Green Dot Bank Review 2022: High-yield savings account but few other options and limited customer service

Illustration by Fortune; Original logo by Green Dot Bank

Founded in 1999, Green Dot Bank is a subsidiary of Texas-based Green Dot Corporation, a financial technology, and bank holding company. An online-only bank, Green Dot offers an extremely limited selection of services.

It offers a high-yield savings account with a competitive APY, but in order to access this savings account, customers are required to open a cash-back Visa debit card with Green Dot. The bank also offers a few other Visa card accounts with deposit features. However, its accounts come with a long list of fees and those in search of a full-service bank will not have many options with Green Dot Bank.

An FDIC-insured bank, Green Dot has representatives available between 5 a.m. and 9 p.m. PT via phone and chat support.

All rates and fees are current as of Dec. 5, 2022, and are subject to change.

Green Dot offerings

Green Dot’s primary offering is its high-yield savings account, which is accessible when opening a cash-back Visa debit card. The bank also offers a G02 mobile bank account, which is a deposit account that’s also linked to a Visa card.

Checking and savings accounts

G02 Mobile Bank Account

  • APY: 2% paid quarterly on balance up to $5,000 in associated savings account

  • Fees

    • Monthly service fee: $5, although it’s waived if you establish payroll direct deposit or direct deposit of government benefits

    • ATM withdrawals: $3 for out-of-network withdrawals

    • Teller cash withdrawal fee: $3

    • Card purchase fee: One-time $2.95 for your first bank card

    • Cardless cash pickup fee upon account closure: $3

    • Check cashing fee: 1% of approved check amount for eligible pre-printed payroll and government checks and 5% for other types of checks. There’s no fee for 10-day delayed check funding.

    • External account funding transaction fee (AFT): 1.5% of the amount transferred up to $10 maximum

    • Inbound debit card transfer fee: 3% of the amount transferred to your primary deposit account subject to a $2 minimum, which is rounded to the nearest cent

    • Expedited delivery replacement card fee: $24.95

    • Foreign transaction fee: 3% of transaction

    • Overdraft fee: $15 for each transaction greater than $5 and overdraws your primary deposit account by more than $10. Up to a maximum of 10 overdraft fees per monthly statement.

This account should not be confused with a formal checking account. The G02 bank account is a mobile debit account, so there are no check-writing privileges. The G02 account includes both a “primary deposit account,” which is an FDIC-insured account that doesn’t earn interest, and an associated interest-bearing savings account that can be used to set money aside for various purposes.

High-yield savings account

Green Dot high-yield savings account

  • APY: 2.0%

  • Fees:

    • Monthly service fee: $9.95

    • In-network ATM withdrawal: $0

    • Out-of-network ATM withdrawal: $3 per transaction

    • In-network ATM balance inquiry: $0

    • Out-of-network balance inquiry: $.50

    • External account funding transaction fee (AFT): 1.5% of the amount transferred up to $10 maximum

    • Replacement card fee: $5 for non-expedited delivery

    • Expedited replacement card fee: $15, which is charged in addition to the $5 fee for a card replacement with regular delivery

    • Cardless funds pickup fee when card is lost or stolen: $3

    • Cardless funds pickup fee when closing account: Up to $5

    • Foreign transaction fee: 3% of transaction

    • Paper check fee: $5.95 for 12 checks

    • Overdraft fee: $15 for each transaction greater than $5 and overdraws your primary deposit account by more than $10. Up to a maximum of 10 overdraft fees per monthly statement. Overdraft is available on this account only if customers opt-in and satisfy certain eligibility requirements.

In order to have access to Green Dot’s high-yield savings, customers must open a cash-back Visa debit card. The cash-back Visa debit card account comes with an FDIC-insured non-interest bearing “primary deposit account” and also the interest-bearing high-yield savings account. Check writing privileges are available with this account.

Other services Green Dot offers

Green Dot also offers:

  • Pay-as-you-go Visa cards

  • Prepaid Visa cards

  • MoneyPak service that allows sending money to other people

The Green Dot platform and customer support

Green Dot offers a mobile app that allows customers to conduct secure mobile banking and manage accounts including making deposits, sending money and paying bills.

Green Dot’s customer service offerings are limited to chatbot on the bank’s website and phone service. In both cases, customer service representatives can be reached between 5 a.m. and 9 p.m. PT, seven days a week. However, you must be a bank customer and must log into your account to access chat customer service. If you’re not already a bank customer, there’s no way to access customer service assistance. Mail is another option for communication. The bank’s mailing address is a P.O. box in Ohio.

Pros and cons of Green Dot

When considering a new bank it’s important to evaluate the pros and cons of its offerings. Here are some of the features and drawbacks associated with Green Dot.

Pro: Generous APY on high-yield savings. The 2% APY on Green Dot’s high-yield savings is 10 times the national savings rate

Con: Limited account options: Beyond the high-yield savings account, which can only be accessed by opening a cash-back Visa debit card, Green Dot offers few other types of accounts.

Con: Many account fees. Green Dot accounts include a long list of fees including fees to transfer money into your account, out of network ATM fees and more.

Con: Customer service limitations. The only way to access customer service, if you have any questions, is to open an account. An account number is required to access the website customer service chat bot and to access customer service when calling.

Frequently asked questions

Is Green Dot an actual bank?

Yes, Green Dot is an online bank and its deposit accounts are FDIC-insured.

Does Green Dot have a physical bank?

No, Green Dot does not have any branch locations.

How do I withdraw money from Green Dot without a card?

Funds in your account can be accessed using the Green Dot app to pick up cash at a local Walmart. Customers can visit the “Manage Card” section on the Green Dot app for more instructions.

This story was originally featured on Fortune.com

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