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Simplii Financial review

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Simplii Financial is a Canadian online-only bank that provides convenient and straightforward banking services, including bank accounts, credit cards, mortgages, loans, and investing accounts. It is known for its no-fee chequing accounts, responsive customer service, and easy-to-use mobile app.

This comprehensive Simplii Financial review will outline the bank’s services, Simplii financial offers, customer satisfaction, its pros and cons, and how it compares to other online banks.

Simplii Financial | Quick overview

Simplii Financial, previously PC Financial, is a full-service online bank.

Its services include day-to-day banking activities such as:

  • Transferring funds
  • Bill payments
  • Depositing money into savings accounts
  • Larger investments like stocks, mutual funds, and even GICs

The bank has also incorporated innovative security features such as two-factor authentication so that customers can rest assured knowing their information is secure when using the application.

Furthermore, all transactions made through Simplii Financial online banking are protected by advanced fraud detection. This can detect any suspicious activity in real-time and immediately alert Simplii Financial’s customer service team, who are available 24/7 should any assistance be required.

Simplii Financial also provides customers with a range of helpful tools to better manage their money, such as budgeting and savings calculators, online bill payment, mobile banking, and more.

Get started with Simplii

Who is Simplii Financial for?

Canadians are notorious for never leaving their financial institutions despite incredibly low savings rates, high fees, and unnecessary charges. 

With that in mind, Simplii targets the younger generations, think Gen-Z and Millennials, who don't feel the need to enter a stuffy brick and mortar bank branch, and desire user-friendly apps, high interest savings accounts, and cash back. They're also looking at the many newcomers to Canada who need a new bank account once they land in Canada. 

That said, it doesn't mean you shouldn't switch your bank because Simplii's promotions and products are probably much better than what your traditional bank has on offer. 

Simplii Financial pros and cons

Pros

Pros

  • Earn interest in chequing and saving accounts.

  • Earn interest in chequing and saving accounts.

  • No monthly fee on any account type including credit card.

  • Top-rated under interface on mobile app.

  • Protection from the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation.

  • No monthly or transaction fees for a credit card, chequing or savings account.

  • 24-hour online and phone support from knowledgeable customer representatives.

  • Quick and simple to open an account from anywhere.

  • Investment accounts are available.

  • Low interest rates for loans and other borrowing services.

Cons

Cons

  • No in-person banking locations.

  • Overdraft protection costs $4.97 monthly, and overdraft balances are charged interest of 19%.

  • The insufficient funds’ fee for the chequing account is $45.

  • No banking accounts are designed for business use.

  • Fees are not waived for out-of-network ATMs.

  • Limited investing capabilities.

  • Not available in Quebec.

A brief history

Simplii Financial Bank is a Canadian-based financial institution owned by CIBC, formerly known as PC Financial and rebranded to Simplii Financial in 2017.

CIBC created Simplii Financial as a way for customers to access more advanced digital services compared to what traditional banks offer.

This includes things like direct deposits without having to visit a physical bank location, mobile check deposits, along with investment options such mutual funds, tax-free saving accounts, and GICs.

Since its launch, Simplii Financial Bank has quickly become one of the most popular online banking solutions in Canada. Millions of Canadians have already signed up to take advantage of its wide range of features and convenient services.

By continuing to create groundbreaking tools and features designed with customer convenience in mind, Simplii Financial shows no sign of slowing down anytime soon.

No-fee online banking

Simplii Financial has also become one of Canada’s most popular online banking solutions due to its commitment to innovation. It is constantly introducing new products and services designed with customer convenience in mind.

This makes it easier than ever for customers to manage their finances without having to go into a physical bank location or wait long periods for transfers or deposits.

While it has no in-person, brick and mortar bank locations, it is a division of The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC), one of Canada’s largest banks. Customers can enjoy the same level of security and trust found with their traditional banking provider and have access to CIBC ATMs for no fee.

Simplii Financial mobile app

With Simplii Financial, customers can manage their finances from the comfort of their homes or on the go via their top-rated mobile app. Its free app is available on both IOS and Android devices.

The Simplii Financial mobile app provides a comprehensive and user-friendly platform for customers to manage their finances from anywhere.

The intuitive and simple design allows customers to quickly access their accounts, transfer funds, check balances, pay bills, and more.

You can also sync the mobile app and your chequing account with your phone’s wallet or other banking service apps for quick pay and easy money transfers.

A few of the most popular uses for the Simplii Financial Mobile App include:

  • Check bank account balances
  • Transfer money between accounts
  • Mobile cheque deposit
  • Online bill pay
  • Search for CIBC ATM locations
  • Order foreign currency cash for free home delivery or pickup
  • Send money internationally with no transfer fees
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Simplii Financial: Types of accounts

No fee chequing accounts

The Simplii Financial No Fee Chequing account is an ideal choice for those looking for convenient everyday banking without paying extra fees.

Key features

  • No monthly fees without the need to meet minimum balance requirements
  • Free unlimited debit purchases, e-Transfers, bill payments, and withdrawals
  • Free ATM access with CIBC machines
  • Overdraft protection is available for up to $5,000 at a minimum charge of $4.97, plus 19% interest. 

Interest rates on Simplii no-fee chequing account balances

Balance Annual interest rate
$0.00 to $50,000 0.01%
$50,000.01 to $100,000 0.05%
$1,000,000.01 and up 0.10%

Interest is calculated by multiplying the daily interest rate for each tier by the portion of the daily closing balance in that tier.

Earn $400 when you become a new client.

Add an eligible direct deposit of at least $100 a month for 3 straight months.Conditions apply. Offer ends October 31, 2024.

While it's nice to not pay for your bank account (many charge $10-$30 for an account with similar features), the regular interest rate could be better. 

But that's where Simplii's High-interest savings accounts come in. 

High-interest savings accounts

Simplii Financial's 5.90% High-Interest Savings Account offer is valid to July 31st, 2024. Open an account and get a special interest rate on eligible deposits for five months.

The Simplii Financial High-Interest Savings Account is an excellent choice for those looking for an easy and convenient way to save their money.

Key features

  • No minimum balance requirement
  • No transaction fees
  • Earn great rates on every dollar
  • No withdrawal limits so you can easily access your funds whenever needed without having to worry about excessive fees or penalties.
  • Deposits are accepted instantly so you can start earning interest on your balance almost immediately after depositing money into the account.
Account balance Annual rate
$0.00 to $100,000 0.40%
$500,000 to $1,000,000 1.25%
$1,000,000.01 and up 5.50%

Interest is calculated by multiplying the daily interest rate (based on the applicable annual rate) by the daily closing balance of your account and is paid into your account monthly.

The Simplii Financial high-interest savings account also features easy transfers between other Simplii Financial accounts giving you the ability to quickly move funds around at any time.

Furthermore, this savings account comes with intuitive online banking tools and mobile apps that allow you to monitor your balance or make transfers on the go from any device. It boasts secure encryption protecting all of your personal data from unauthorized access.

Simplii Financial saving accounts can be opened in just minutes without having to go through any tedious paperwork or long wait times, allowing you to start growing your savings right away.

USD savings accounts

Simplii Financial offers a United States Dollar savings account that allows users to receive the best possible exchange rates to and from USD.

Key features

  • No monthly fees and no minimum balance requirement
  • Deposit USD and non-USD funds into the account, as well as transfer Canadian dollars from other accounts into USD
  • Earns a 3.05% interest rate on the daily account balance, which is deposited into the account monthly

That high-interest rate competes for one of the best HISAs in Canada

Overall, this account would be ideal for someone whose personal finance is in both CAD and USD or a person who travels internationally frequently.

Get started with Simplii

Student banking program

The Simplii Financial student banking program is the perfect choice for young people who need to get financially organized and are looking to get serious about managing their finances.

The student program opens a chequing account and a cash back credit card for the customer with special promotional offers.

Key features

  • No-fee chequing to easily pay bills and access funds 24/7 with no charges or penalties
  • Simplii Financial Cash Back Visa Card makes it easy for students to earn 1% cash back on gas and grocery purchases
  • Simplii Financial app lets you track spending habits and manage your accounts. 
  • Refer a friend and earn $125 when they open an eligible account using your referral link (and they get $50, too!)

Join Simplii Financial™ and get up to $400

Earn $400 when you become a new client and set up direct deposit

Simplii Financial Cash Back Visa Card

The Simplii Financial Cash Back Visa Card is an excellent choice for those looking to earn rewards with a no fee credit card. 

Simplii Financial™ Cash Back Visa* Card

Apply now

20% back

Good

about new welcome offers by email

on eligible restaurant, bar and coffee shop purchases, up to $5,000 per year.†

4%

on eligible gas, groceries, drugstore purchases and pre-authorized payments, up to $15,000 per year† - after that 0.5% unlimited.

1.5%

on all other credit card purchases with no limit on how much you can earn.†

0.5%

Purchase APR

20.99%

Balance Transfer Rate

22.99%

Cash Advance APR

22.99%

Annual Fee

$0

Foreign Transaction Fee

2.50%

Recommended Credit Score

Good

Required Annual Household Income

$15,000

Pros

  • Extremely high cash back on bars and restaurants

  • Solid cash back on groceries, drug store, gas and prepayments

  • No annual fee

  • Up to three additional cards free of charge

Cons

  • Cash back applied as year-end statement credit

  • Simplii Legal Disclaimer

    +

    †Terms and conditions apply. Click ‘Apply Now’ for complete details. This offer is not available for residents of Quebec.

    "Purchase" means any Transaction other than a Cash Advance, Balance Transfer or Convenience Cheque. "Cash" means a Cash Advance, Balance Transfer and Convenience Cheque. Interest rates may change from time to time.

The Simplii Financial Cash Back Visa is a great credit card for young adults and newcomers alike, but also gets real close to one of the best cash back credit cards in Canada. However, while your cash back is accumulated each month, it's only redeemed on the last day of your December statement. 

It also comes with purchase security and extended protection insurance, and you can opt to pay for CIBC medical insurance if you're travelling. 

To qualify, you need to be a Canadian resident (outside of Quebec), your minimum household income is at least $15,000, you're the age of majority in your province, and you haven't declared bankruptcy in the past 7 years. 

It's a great card for roommates too who share groceries and gas fees—rack up the rewards faster without an additional charge for additional cards. 

Get started with Simplii

Simplii Financial banking services

Simplii Financial offers a range of banking services to its customers, including personal loans, secured lines of credit, creditor insurance, and mortgages. All banking services are provided with secure encryption technology, so your data remains safe from unauthorized access.

Customers report excellent customer service when applying for borrowing services or needing assistance with their Simplii Financial products.

A personal loan is an excellent way to access funds when you need them, and these loans can be used for anything from debt consolidation to home renovations.

Simplii Financial makes it easy for existing customers to apply, has flexible monthly payment dates, and has competitive interest rates.

A secured line of credit, also known as a Home Equity Line of Credit, is ideal for those who have an established history with the bank and need access to funds on short notice. It lets you borrow money from the bank and use it for things like home renovations or to pay bills.

Simplii Financial offers secured lines of credit with competitive rates and terms so you can get the best possible deal when borrowing money.

Creditor insurance helps protect your money if you die, are sick or lose your job. It can help you pay off your debts and keep your family from having to take on the burden of your financial obligations.

Simplii Financial offers insurance to their customers, helping to ensure that your finances remain secure in times of need.

Simplii Financial’s Global Money Transfer feature is a secure and convenient way to send money abroad without any expensive fees or hassles. With a single click, you can safely and securely transfer up to $50,000 in local currency, CAD, or USD to 130 countries around the world.

Simplii Financial also offers foreign currency delivery where a Simplii Financial customer can buy currencies, up to $2,500, and have them delivered to their home or any other location.

Before travelling, a customer can order from the 65 available currencies and have their requested amount delivered to their home or Canada Post Office within a few business days.

Simplii Financial mortgages

Simplii Financial offer mortgages with competitive rates and terms so you can get the best possible deal when purchasing a new home or refinancing an existing one. The bank also provides free financial planning advice so you can save money while still enjoying top-notch banking services.

View all current mortgage rates in Canada

Simplii Financial investment accounts

Simplii Financial offers different ways to invest your money. They have multiple options for registered, non-registered, and tax-free investment accounts.

Although there are no physical bank locations, customers are able to contact a Simplii Financial customer service person for assistance with investment accounts and of course, personal banking.

They offer tax-free savings accounts (TFSA), registered retirement savings plans (RRSP), registered education savings plans (RESP), registered retirement income funds (RRIF), mutual funds, and guaranteed investment certificates (GICS).

Unlike their no fee chequing account, there is a $50 fee for TFSA or RRSP account transfer. However, there are no monthly fees or minimum deposits to open an investment account.

Get started with Simplii

How Simplii Financial compares to other online banks

Simplii Financial is similar to other online banks in Canada such as Tangerine Bank, Manulife Bank, and EQ Bank when it comes to the types of accounts and the personal banking services offered.

However, Simplii bank is a significantly larger and further-reaching online bank with excellent customer reviews and a low account turnover rate.

Security

Just as Simplii is backed by the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Tangerine Bank and EQ bank are also backed by a larger, major bank. However, Manulife Bank is wholly owned.

All of the mentioned banks’ deposits are insured by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation up to $100,000 per account.

Differences in bank accounts

Simplii Financial and Tangerine Bank offer a larger section of multiple bank accounts, including chequing, savings accounts, credit cards, and more. EQ Bank only provides savings accounts and investment accounts to their customers.

No bank mentioned above, other than Manulife Bank, has bank account minimum balances or monthly fees. Only Simplii Financial chequing accounts earn interest.

Convenience

Most online banking customers can use in-person ATMs for a small fee. Simplii Financial, Tangerine Bank, and EQ Bank waive ATM fees on in-network ATMs but not on out-of-network machines. Simplii Financial customer has free access to all CIBC locations across Canada, of which there are over 3,400 nationwide.

Customer service

Simplii Financial stands out from other online banks such as Tangerine Bank and EQ Bank in terms of their superior customer service. Long-term customers report short wait times, knowledgeable staff, and user-friendly online and mobile banking.

Get started with Simplii

Simplii Financial review: Our final thoughts

Simplii Financial, previously PC Financial, is ideal for people looking for an online bank for personal finance. It will reward a loyal customer with high interest chequing and savings accounts, with an interest rate that earns more as your save more.

The Simplii cash back credit card is perfect for everyday use and first time credit card users thanks to its low interest rate, simple to understand rewards simple and mobile app that makes bill payments easy.

Overall, Simplii Financial is an excellent choice for anyone looking for an easy-to-use yet powerful digital banking solution with enhanced security measures in place at all times.

Its comprehensive range of services ranging from a cash back credit card to investment options, along with a competitive fee schedule makes this an ideal bank for both novice and experienced investors alike.

With no monthly fees and competitive interest rates, Simplii Financial provides a great way to save money while still enjoying the convenience of online banking and unbeatable customer service.

FAQ

Our Simplii financial review answers the most common questions around this bank.

  • Is Simplii owned by CIBC?

    +

    Yes, it’s a trademark and division of CIBC.

  • Is Simplii Financial a real bank?

    +

    Yes – it only operates online, but it’s a bona fide financial institution.

  • Which is better Tangerine vs Simplii?

    +

    Simplii and Tangerine are both excellent choices, but Simplii’s superior customer service gives it the edge.

  • Is Simplii Financial secure?

    +

    Yes. Accounts are protected by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation, and the company’s digital security is excellent.

"Simplii FinancialTM" is a trademark and division of CIBC. Banking services are not available in Quebec.

Chris has an MBA with a focus in advanced investments and has been writing about all things personal finance since 2015. He’s also built and run a digital marketing agency, focusing on content marketing, copywriting, and SEO, since 2016. You can connect with Chris on Twitter @moneymozartblog.

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