Recent Award Winners

Junior and Youth Banking
Commonwealth Bank: Outstanding Value Award Winner
Hume Bank:Outstanding Value Award Winner

Helpful Information

What is a youth banking account?Bank of the Year Youth Banking

A youth banking account or junior banking account is a bank account designed for young people up to a certain age, which usually doesn’t charge any account-keeping fees. If you want to save for something special, you’ll want a savings account. If you want to access your money by making purchases, you’ll want a transaction account.

Youth banking accounts usually come in slightly different packaging for two different age groups:

  • Junior Bank Account – Under 12s
  • Youth Bank Account – Under 18s

Juniors and Youth are both learning about how to manage money, but they each use their money for different things, so they have different banking needs.

Once you turn 13 years old, you can usually operate your own bank account without needing your parent to open it for you, but your parent will often still need to sign a guarantee of indemnity.

Browse this page for tips on the interest rates available for kids’ savings accounts, why it’s important for kids to have their own bank account, what to look for in a kids’ bank account, School Banking programs available in Australia, and more.

How to compare youth banking accounts

There are a few basic features to look for in a Junior Saver or Junior Transactor account, depending on your personal situation:

  1. High interest rate (beware of high introductory rates that return to lower rates after a time)
  2. No account-keeping fees
  3. Maximum number of free transactions (purchases)
  4. Low minimum deposit amounts required
  5. Online banking available
  6. Online education tools for learning about how to manage your money
  7. A School Banking program if you’re under 12
  8. Low or no fees on other account features such as ATM withdrawals
  9. A branch and an ATM near you for when you need it
  10. Account personalisation options, so that you can set up sub-accounts for your savings goals

Compare Youth Banking

How Canstar compares youth banking

Canstar compares youth banking with our unique, sophisticated Youth Banking Star Ratings methodology, looking at both pricing and features. We present the results with our consumer-friendly 5-star concept, with a 5-star rating signifying a product that offers outstanding value.

Some of the features Canstar compares are:

  • Exemptions from fees and charges
  • Specific conditions on the account
  • Educational tools
  • ATM and online banking access

You can read the full star ratings report and compare youth banking products yourself, based on your own requirements, using the comparison selector tool at the top of the page.

Compare Youth Banking

Written by: TJ Ryan and Tim Smith

Youth banking glossary of terms

Please note that these are a general explanation of the meaning of terms used in relation to junior and youth banking accounts. Your bank or financial institution may use different terms, and you should read your product disclosure statement (PDS) carefully to understand everything that may apply to your account. You cannot rely on these terms in relation to any account you may open.

Account-keeping fees: An ongoing fee charged to cover the bank’s costs of creating and maintaining the account. You can generally expect that a good youth bank account, kids’ bank account, or student bank account will not charge an account-keeping fee.

Annual equivalent rate (AER): A rate that can be compared between lenders, which shows what compound interest rate would be paid once each year. Savings accounts must advertise their AER so that you can compare the interest you could actually expect to receive from the different accounts on offer.

Bonus savings account: Accounts that give you bonus interest if you deposit a certain amount of money into the account (usually around $50 or $100) and you meet the conditions, e.g. not making any withdrawals in that month.

Compound interest: Compound interest is when interest is calculated on the entire balance of your account, not just the initial amount you deposited when you opened the account. This means that every year, if you don’t withdraw your balance, you will be earning more interest because the balance of the account is getting bigger. All savings accounts should use compound interest.

Credit card: A card that gives the account holder access to a line of credit, similar to a personal loan. Under 18s are not eligible to apply for a credit card, but those aged 16 years or older can sometimes be eligible to hold a supplementary card on their parents’ credit card account. It is not recommended that young people be given access to credit cards, as a debit card is a more sensible choice for learning about how to use money responsibly.

Debit card: A card that is linked to a transaction account and allows the cardholder to make purchases at stores and online, and make cash withdrawals from an ATM. Also known as a bank card or cheque card.

Direct deposit: When a transaction is automatically removed from an account and received into a different person’s account. For example, you might have a direct debit set up to top-up a prepaid mobile phone or pay a mobile phone plan bill every month.

EFTPOS (Electronic Funds Transfer at Point of Sale): A payment system where you use your debit card to make payment for goods or services, or to withdraw cash. EFTPOS machines are used to process these payments at shops.

Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS): Australia’s free and independent dispute resolution service that helps consumers make complaints and resolve disputes with their banks, insurers and other financial institutions. Learn about the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Introductory rate: A promotional rate offered by many savings accounts to grow your savings at a higher interest rate for a set period of time. At the end of the introductory bonus period, the interest rate will return to a revert rate or the account’s normal base rate. An introductory rate is a type of promotional rate (see below).

Pay Anyone: A payment system where you can transfer money to any individual or organisation using online or phone banking, as long as you have their account name and number, and their BSB number.

Promotional rate: A higher interest rate which is only offered during a specified time period. When the promotional period ends, the interest rate will generally return to the normal base rate.

Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA): The central bank of Australia. It is a government-owned institution that issues our bank notes, sets the official cash rate to meet the inflation target, maintains our financial payments system, and manages Australia’s reserves of gold and foreign currencies.

Savings account: Bank accounts that pay interest to the account holder, and are not designed for making purchases or payments. They can be linked to transaction accounts so that you can transfer money from your savings to your transaction account when you have to make a big purchase.

Transaction account: A deposit account that gives you easy access to your money for transactions such as purchases or payments. You can use a debit card (bank card) attached to the account to make EFTPOS transactions at the shops and online, to pay your phone bill, and to withdraw cash at ATMs, supermarket check-outs, or a bank branch. You can also use your transaction account to write cheques if you ever need to.

Youth banking providers we research and rate

At the time of our latest star ratings, Canstar researches and rates the follow providers of youth banking accounts:

  • BankVic
  • Bankwest
  • bcu (Bananacoast Community Credit Union)
  • B&E Personal Banking
  • Bendigo Bank
  • Beyond Bank
  • Catalyst Money
  • Commonwealth Bank (CommBank)
  • Community First Credit Union
  • CUA
  • ECU Australia
  • First Option Credit Union
  • Gateway Credit Union
  • Horizon Credit Union
  • Hume Bank (formerly Hume Building Society)
  • Illawarra Credit Union
  • IMB Bank
  • Intech Credit Union
  • MyState
  • Newcastle Permanent
  • Northern Beaches Credit Union
  • People’s Choice Credit Union
  • Police Bank
  • SCU
  • Teachers Mutual Bank
  • The Mutual
  • The Rock
  • Victoria Teachers Mutual Bank
  • Westpac

Compare Youth Bank Accounts and Junior Bank Accounts using our latest star ratings:

Compare Youth Banking