Your Guide To Opening a Citi® Account

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If you’re here, you’ve likely decided on — or are strongly considering — opening a Citi account. As a leader in personal banking, credit cards and wealth management, Citi® is a global financial institution that’s been around for more than 200 years.

Whether you’re a first-time bank account owner or you have experience across multiple banks, learning how to open a Citi account is as simple as spending a few minutes on this article.

This guide will cover every step to opening an account with Citi, as well as main account features, how to avoid fees and whether Citi is really the right choice for you.

How To Open an Account at Citi in 3 Steps

You may be asking yourself “What do I need to open a Citi account?” The Citi account you want to open depends on your current banking needs. Are you looking for a bill-pay account to use for rent, utilities and other monthly expenses? Or do you need a secure place to grow that new car fund? Here’s what you need to get started with opening a Citi account.

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1. Gather Your Personal Information

Whether you’re applying for an account online or in person, you’ll need these documents/information.

If you decide to go to a branch to open an account, you’ll want to bring your driver’s license, state ID or military ID to verify your identity.

2. Choose an Account

Go over Citi’s account options to decide which is best for you. Citi’s accounts are generally designed for customers based on their account balances.

Citi Checking Accounts

  • Citigold®: You’ll need to maintain a monthly balance of $200,000 or more across all eligible Citi accounts. You won’t be charged out-of-network ATM fees.
  • Citi Priority: Citi Priority checking has similar features, but comes with lower balance requirements than Citigold®.
  • The Citibank Account: Unless you keep an average combined balance of $10,000 or more, you’ll have a $25 monthly maintenance fee. However, out-of-network ATM fees are waived if you maintain the balance.
  • Basic Banking: Best for people who just want the basics, avoiding the monthly maintenance fee of $12 is simple. Maintain a balance of $1,500, schedule one bill pay or receive at least one direct deposit per statement cycle. In addition, adults over 62 qualify for free Basic Banking.
  • Access Account: Ideal for digital bankers, you’ll avoid the $10 monthly fee the same way as basic banking — maintain a balance of $1,500, schedule one bill pay or receive at least one direct deposit per statement cycle. The main difference between the Access and Basic account is checks. You won’t have check-writing privileges with the Access account.

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Citi Savings Accounts

3. Apply To Open a Citi Account

You can apply to open an account online, over the phone or in person. The process should be simple if you have all the required information listed above.

To apply online, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Citi homepage.
  2. Click on “Open an account” on the top menu bar to the right.
  3. Select the account you would like to open.
  4. Fill out the necessary information.

To apply in person:

You can also visit your nearest Citi branch and have a representative walk you through the application process. Applying at a branch is preferable for customers who are new to Citi or new to banking in general. To find a Citi location near you, visit its branch locator and enter your location.

To apply over the phone:

It’s possible to call 1-800-374-9500 from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. EST and speak with a representative for help with opening a Citi account. Have your personal documents and details ready to provide the representative with the info they ask for.

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Citi Checking Account Fees and Features

You may have noticed that Citi has a bevy of checking, savings and CD accounts, but for the sake of simplicity, we’ll talk mostly about its checking and savings options.

Checking Account Fees and Features

Citi is one of the best banks for a checking account. However, watch out for fees. Even the basic account has requirements to avoid maintenance fees and other charges for various transactions. Some of the fees include:


Citi Priority

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The Citibank Account

Basic Banking

Access Checking

Citi Savings Account Fees and Features

Interest rates depend on your account relationship tier, which checking account you open in conjunction.

Savings Account Fees and Features

Citi only offers one savings account relationship tier, which the bank encourages all account holders to open. If it’s not linked to a checking account, the monthly fee can vary between $4.50 and $30, although it can be waived. Rates depend on the balance and are between 0.04% and 0.15% APY.

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Citi Savings

How To Avoid Unwanted Fees

Now that you’re acquainted with Citi’s fees, you can strategize on how to avoid them.

Preventing Unwanted Fees

  1. Set up alerts: You can get email or mobile notifications when your balance gets below a set amount. It could save you from overdraft fees, which add up.
  2. Overdraft protection: Link your Citi savings account along to your checking account so the funds you need automatically cover checks or debits.
  3. Avoid ATM fees: Except for Access and Basic Checking, ATM fees from non-network machines may be waived.

Should You Open a Citi Account?

There are many solid banks that provide competitive rates and services. However, Citi holds its own due to the large network of nationwide branches and ATMs and the number of account options.


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How Does Citi Compare to Other Banks?

Citi offers bank accounts for individuals who prefer a traditional, in-person banking experience and for online bankers. But has the bank spread too thin by trying to do both? Here’s how much you’ll pay for the same services at competing banks.

Account Fees and Rates Comparison

Wells Fargo

Ally Bank

TD Bank



Capital One

Is Citi the Bank for You?

Citi’s wide range of account options for people with all types of balances makes it easy to grow with the bank. In addition, you’ll find plenty of credit card products and loan options.

There is probably a Citi branch or ATM near you, making the bank a convenient option if you travel often. And last but not least, Citi’s signup bonuses can be lucrative. You can earn free cash, simply for opening an account.

More on Citi Bank

Cynthia Bowman contributed to the reporting for this article.

This article was updated Jan. 4, 2022, to reflect changes in interest-bearing accounts. This article was updated on July 24, 2023 to reflect current Citi Priority and Citgold® details.

Rates and fees are subject to change. Unless otherwise noted, rates are updated periodically. All other information on accounts is accurate as of July 18, 2022.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by Citi. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been endorsed by Citi.

Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by, and debit card issued by, The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank, N.A.; Members FDIC.