The Best Checking Accounts in Hawaii for 2024

Explore the best checking accounts in Hawaii for seamless banking. Enjoy low fees, high interest rates, and exclusive benefits. Compare local and online bank.
Written by Shannon Lee
Financial Expert
Managing Editor
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Skyline of Honolulu Hawaii

When you’re looking for a checking account in Hawaii, there are many banks to choose from. Hawaii’s local banks are solid, but online options are also available. Let’s dive into what you need to know when opening a checking account in the Aloha State.

Compare Hawaii Checking Accounts with Online Checking Accounts

Comparing local banks to online banks is one of the first things you should do when choosing a checking account. Here are the questions to ask yourself:

  • Is in-person banking a must for me?
  • Am I okay with no access to in-person baking but using a robust mobile app instead?
  • How often will I use ATMs?
  • Am I willing to pay bank fees, and if so, how much?
  • Will I need to deposit cash into my account?
  • How much does customer service matter to me?
  • Do I want to earn interest on my money?

What’s the Difference Between In-Person and Online Banks?

Best Checking Accounts in Hawaii for 2024

Many local banks in Hawaii offer complete services, including savings and checking accounts. Here are the most popular.

First Hawaiian Bank

Hawaii’s oldest and largest financial institution, First Hawaiian Bank, offers three checking accounts. Each account requires a minimum of $20 to open. There is a monthly service charge between $4 and $25 per month, but that fee can easily be waived through direct deposits or keeping a minimum balance.

Online and mobile banking, including mobile deposit, is available for all accounts. Online bill pay is also popular and can be entirely free with direct deposit.

With more than 275 ATMs across the islands, you can find a place to withdraw money wherever you roam in the state.

Bank of Hawaii

When you choose the Bank of Hawaii for your checking needs, you can choose among five potential accounts.

Though the three Bankohana accounts each require a minimum deposit of $500, the Convenience and EASE checking accounts require only $25 to open. Depending on the account, monthly fees can be waived with either direct deposit or a minimum balance.

With the largest ATM network across the islands, you can always have easy access to your money. If you sign up for one of the Bankohana accounts, you could get a substantial bonus for completing certain activities.

Big Island Federal Credit Union

The checking account at Big Island Federal Credit Union is known as a Share Draft Account, but it works just like a typical checking account. You can open the account with $50. At the same time, a $3 monthly fee can be avoided by either getting a debit card or having a minimum of $300 in your account at all times.

Online banking and mobile banking are robust and easy to use. The UChoose Rewards program strengthens community ties by offering points on purchases through local businesses, which you can redeem however you please.

Anyone who resides, works, or has ties to Hawaii may become a member for $1.

Compare The Best Checking Accounts in Hawaii

Many banks and credit unions in Hawaii offer checking accounts, and there’s strong competition among them to offer the lowest fees and best rewards. Use our listing to find the best checking account to fit your financial goals.

Pros & Cons of Hawaii Local Banks

Local banks are a strong contender for your business in Hawaii.

The widespread use of local banks on the islands makes it more likely that you will find the checking account you need in your neighborhood. Here are some advantages and disadvantages.


  • Hawaii prides itself on strong communities, and the presence of local banks helps ensure you can get the help you need anytime from bank branches and 24/7 customer service lines.
  • Local banks have a full selection of mortgages, auto loans, and more.
  • Local banks have strong ATM networks on the islands, but these local banks also tap into ATM networks that number in the tens of thousands across the continental U.S. – perfect for frequent travelers.


  • Though checking account interest rates in Hawaii can be quite competitive, they might still be lower than the higher rates you usually get from online banks.
  • Local banks might not have the best website or mobile app, making it challenging to bank online.
  • Branches are usually open only during regular banking hours.

Online Checking for Hawaii Residents

To find the best online checking accounts for you, pay attention to the opinions of those who have already tried that particular bank.

These checking account reviews can help you get started.

Quontic Bank Checking

Quontic Bank offers High Interest and Cash Rewards Checking accounts, both requiring a $100 minimum deposit.

The High-Interest account offers a favorable APY for users making at least 10 qualifying transactions per statement cycle, while the Cash Rewards account provides 1% cash back on eligible debit card purchases.

These accounts are designed for efficiency and reward, with no overdraft fees, aiming to maximize the financial benefits for account holders.

Axos Bank Checking

Axos Bank offers various checking accounts, like the no-fee Essential Checking and Rewards Checking, which provides a highly competitive APY. CashBack Checking offers up to 1% cash back on purchases.

These accounts feature benefits like unlimited ATM fee reimbursements, 24/7 customer support, and enhanced digital security.

Axos emphasizes convenience through online banking, offering financial autonomy with low fees and extensive account access.

Chime Checking

Chime’s checking account is fee-free, with no minimum balance required. It features SpotMe® for overdrafts, early direct deposit, and access to over 60,000 ATMs.

The account supports mobile deposits and cash deposits at retailers, offering robust security features like instant transaction alerts and card control.

Pros and Cons of Online Checking Accounts

Though the presence of online checking accounts isn’t as strong in Hawaii as it might be in other parts of the United States, there are still some to choose from that can compete with the local ones.

Here’s what to expect from online checking accounts in Hawaii.


  • You might enjoy a higher interest rate from an online bank since they tend to have little overhead. They can pass their savings along to you.
  • Online banks often focus on a few particular products and do them well. An online bank might offer a seamless checking or savings account but not have the potential to provide mortgages or vehicle loans.
  • A strong website and a robust mobile app are essential for online banks. This allows you to easily manage your money at any time, day or night, no matter where you are.
  • A strong website and a robust mobile app are essential for online banks. This allows you to easily manage your money at any time, day or night, no matter where you are.
  • Customer service at online banks tends to be very strong and available around the clock.


  • Online banks usually don’t have branches, so it can be virtually impossible to talk to someone in person if you need assistance. However, some banks do have branches in larger cities.
  • If you need more than a basic checking or savings account, you might need to turn to local banks. It might be a challenge to bank at more than one institution.

What to Look for When Choosing a Checking Account in Hawaii

What options matter most to you when choosing a checking account? Pay close attention to fees, branch access, interest rates, and more. Let’s break down things to consider when opening a new checking account.

Monthly Fees

Though many banks are moving to a no-fee model, some still charge fees. Look to banks with no fees for their checking accounts or make the existing fees easy to waive, such as by adding a direct deposit.

Other Fees

In many cases, you might not notice the other fees a bank might charge. For instance, a bank might charge for paper statements, but if you never get paper statements for any reason, you can safely ignore that fee. However, consider the example of a wire transfer – if you often use wire transfers, those fees can add up quickly.

Look at the fine print to determine if any other fees apply to you, and choose your bank accordingly.

ATM and Branch Access

Some banks offer branded ATMs for no fee, but most will also plug into the ATM network, which can include 40,000 or more fee-free ATMs worldwide.

Some banks will waive the ATM fees that other banks might charge you, so if this needs to be an option for your convenience, look for a bank that will provide the waiver or refund. If you prefer to bank in person, a branch will be necessary.

Interest Rates or Bonuses 

Those wanting to earn more money for their banking loyalty can seek interest-bearing checking accounts.

These are more likely to charge fees, but depending on how much you put into the account and the amount of interest you accrue, the fee might be worth it. Carefully weigh the pros and cons. Some banks will also offer bonuses if you open an account with them and keep it in good standing for a certain period.

Mobile Banking Apps 

If you want to manage your money on the go, a robust mobile banking app is the key. Look at the website and mobile app before deciding whether to keep your money in that bank.

Does the mobile app work well? Can you make mobile deposits? Is the website seamless? Are you comfortable with its intuitiveness? These things can help determine if you are comfortable using this as your go-to bank.

What to Know About Hawaii Checking Accounts

Here are some other essential points to know about banks in Hawaii:

  • A checking account can be opened by someone who is 16 or older. However, when opening a joint account, all holders must be at least 18 years of age. 
  • If there is no activity on your checking account for one year, a bank might be able to charge you a maintenance fee, even if you have a required minimum balance.
  • Because Hawaii has such strong local banks, “mainland” banks such as Chase and U.S. Bank have a minimal presence in some areas.
About Author
Shannon Lee
Shannon Lee, a versatile contributor to MoneyRates, is a freelance writer with a passion that spans over two decades. Her extensive writing portfolio encompasses a myriad of topics, ranging from personal finance and home improvement to education, relationships, and medical and health subjects. In addition to her prolific freelance career, Shannon is also a novelist. Shannon’s dedication to providing insightful and informative content makes her a valued voice in the world of personal finance.
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