According to a MyBroadband survey of a basket of transactions, Bank Zero offers the cheapest low-cost banking service in South Africa.
All of South Africa’s major conventional and digital banks offer entry-level low-cost accounts for people who prefer a pay-as-you-transact approach to products with higher monthly administrative fees.
Bank accounts with monthly fees of less than R10 are available from Absa, Capitec, FNB, Standard Bank, Nedbank, TymeBank and Bank Zero.
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MyBroadband analyzed the transaction costs of several low-cost bank accounts.
We calculated the total cost and selected a winner based on a basket of monthly purchases. The following transactions are included in the basket:
The monthly account costsOne cash deposit of R1,000Two cash withdrawals of R1,000 at your own bankOne cash withdrawal of R1,000 at another bankThree external direct debit ordersThree payments to other banksTwo prepaid credit purchasesTwo prepaid electricity purchases20 SMS notifications
South Africa’s digital banks offer significant savings over traditional banks, provided consumers are willing to forego certain privileges, such as the ability to deposit and withdraw funds at a branch.
These new banks only accept deposits at supported POS terminals and ATMs from other banks.
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Standard Bank came out on top among the country’s established banks. It should be noted, however, that it was a slim margin, with just R1.55 separating the total basket value from that of FNB’s Easy PayU account.
The chart below summarizes the basket comparison between the accounts of the five banks.
Bank Zero and TymeBank’s PoS deposit fees are determined by the store. For the analysis, we used Shoprite’s R19.95 cost.
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Bank Zero’s basket cost R32.95 in total, while TymeBank, the other digital bank surveyed, was the second cheapest at R41.95.
The total cost of the Standard Bank entry account is R63.30, followed by FNB’s Easy PayU and Capitec’s Global One at R64.85 and R72.00 respectively.
Standard Bank’s MyMo PayT account has one of the highest administrative fees of the bunch, but lower ATM withdrawal fees from other banks put it in first place among major banks.
If FNB charged less for prepaid power recharges, their Easy PayU account would have been cheaper than Standard Bank’s. Standard Bank costs R1.50 per purchase while it charges R2.70.
While there are no administrative charges associated with the Nedbank Approximate Account, regular transactions are more expensive, making the cost of the basket R105.10.
Absa’s Transact account was the most expensive, costing R108.90. This was mainly due to higher costs for SMS notifications, deposits and withdrawals.
The following table compares the bank charges for entry accounts from different South African banks.
Basic fees and minimum balance requirementsBank accountMonthly feeMinimum balanceSMS notificationsDeposit (ATM)Deposit branchNedbank pay-as-you-useR0.00R0.00R0.50R1.50/R100R100 + R2.50/100TymeBankR0.00R0.00R0.30N/A*N/A * (Shoprite : R19.95)Bank ZeroR0.00R0.00R0.00**N/A*N/A* (Shoprite: R19.95)Absa TransactR4.90R20.00R0.60R2.50/R100R4.00/R100FNB Easy PayUR4.95R0 .00R0.00R1.20/R100R80 + R2.75/R100Standard Bank MyMo PayTR5.95R0.00R1.10R1.20/R100R80 + R2.50/R100Capitec Global OneR7.00R25.00R0.25R1.40/R100R4.00 /R100* TymeBank and Bank Zero only specify deposit fees at their supported outlets. The Bank Zero rate varies depending on the seller. **Bank Zero does not provide SMS notifications. However, app and email notifications are free.Withdrawals / payments / debitsBank accountWithdrawal (ATM)Withdrawal (PoS)Payment to the same bankPayment to another bankExternal direct debit orderNedbank pay as you useR10.00/R1000Other banks: R12.00 + R2 .50/R100R2.00R2 .20R2.20R3.50TymeBankR10/R1.000R3.00R0.00R0.00R0.00Bank ZeroR9.00/R1.000R2.00R0.00R0.00R0.00Absa TransactR10.00/R1000Other Banks: R10.00 + R2.50/R100N/ AR1.00R1.00R1.00FNB Easy PayUR7.00/R1000Other Banks: R15.00/R1.000R0.00R1.00R1.00R3.50Standard Bank MyMo PayTR8/R1,000 to R3,000; R2.20/R1000 thereafter. Other Banks: R10/R1,000 to R3,000; R2.20/R100 thereafterR1.40R1.25R1.25R3.50Capitec Global OneR9.50/R1.000Other banks: R10.50 per R1.000R1.75R1.00R2.00R2.50Prepaid credit and electricityBank accountPrepaid credit (online/app)Prepaid airtime (ATM)Prepaid electricity (online/app)Prepaid electricity (ATM)Nedbank pay-as-you-useR1.50R1.50Other bank: R10.00R1.50R1.50Other bank: R10.00TymeBankR0.00N/AR0.00N/ABank NulR0 .00N/AR0.00N/AAbsa TransactR1.50R1.50Other Bank: R12.00R1.50R1.50Other Bank: R12.00FNB Easy PayUR0.00R0.00Other Bank: R15.00R2.70R2.70Other Bank: R15.00Standard Bank MyMo PayTR0 .50R0.50Other Bank: R15R1.50R1.50Other Bank: R15.00Capitec Global OneR0.50R0.00Other Bank: R8.00R0.50R0.00Other Bank: R8.00