Founded in 1865, HSBC is a bank and financial organization that has grown to serve more than 40 million customers and operates in 64 countries worldwide. The bank’s products cater to personal and corporate customers with checking accounts, savings accounts, CDs, and credit cards.
While it doesn’t have the largest branch presence or number of ATMs, HSBC does offer an industry-leading online banking experience.
Pros and Cons
- A wide variety of personal banking products catering to different needs and financial situations
- High-yield savings accounts
- Over 155 years of banking experience
- Limited physical branch and ATM presence across the world
- Certain accounts need to be opened up on different websites, which can be confusing
What Services Does HSBC Offer?
In terms of personal products, HSBC offers checking accounts, savings accounts, CDs, and credit cards.
There are five checking account options available from HSBC. These options include:
- Premier Checking: This top-of-the-line checking account requires a $75,000 minimum (or recurring deposits of $5,000/month). Not meeting this minimum means you have to pay $50/month to maintain your account. A premier checking account also comes with unlimited out-of-network ATM reimbursements in the U.S.
- Advance Checking: While not as high as in the Premier, the Advance checking account also has a minimum you must maintain to avoid a monthly maintenance fee — if you don’t maintain a minimum of $5,000 in your account, you have to pay $25/month to keep your account open. You can also take advantage of four out-of-network ATM reimbursements per month in the U.S., except for New York.
- Choice Checking: With $1,500 in other accounts, there is no minimum required for a Choice Checking account. Without $1,500 in your accounts, you need to pay $15/month.
- Basic Banking: Basic may be in the name, but that that doesn't mean you should overlook this checking account. There is no minimum required (your account will incur a $3 monthly fee regardless of how much is in it), your first eight checks are free, and afterward, you only have to pay $0.35/check.
- Direct Checking: While you can’t write paper checks with this online-only account, it only costs $1 to open and charges no fees when using HSBC ATMs within the United States.
You’ll find three different savings accounts offered by HSBC, with APYs ranging from 0.01% to 0.15%. These accounts include:
- HSBC Premier Savings: Benefit from high-interest rates for higher balances, use your balance towards your monthly minimum HSBC Premier balance requirement, and get access to HSBC’s global banking and investment solutions. If the minimum balance is met, you can get up to 15% APY.
- HSBC Advance Savings: Seamlessly transfer funds between your Advance Savings account and as many other checking accounts as you want, even those held by different banks. You can also set up automatic transfers and get up to 0.05% APY if you maintain the minimum required balance.
- HSBC Everyday Savings: This basic savings account allows you to set up automatic transfers and get up to 0.01% APY on balances over $1.
- Direct Savings: Similar to the Direct Checking account, this online-only account requires just $1 to open and offers up to 0.15% APY.
HSBC also offers three CDs: 6 months, 12 months, and 24 months. While you’ll need $1,000 to open a CD, you can avoid a $5 maintenance fee by maintaining a balance of at least $500.
You can choose from six HSBC credit cards, some offering 0% introductory APR. After your introductory APR, you can expect a variable APR somewhere in the range of 13.99% to 23.99%.
Annual fees range from $0 for the introductory HSBC Gold Credit Card to $365 for the HSBC Elite Credit Card. There are also a variety of different options between these two cards, such as the HSBC Cash Rewards Credit Card for people who want cash back, HSBC Cash Rewards Student Credit Card for students, and the HSBC Premier World Credit Card for avid travelers and point seekers.
How to Bank With HSBC
How you open your HSBC account will depend on the kind of account you’re opening. For example, you can open checking, savings, and CD products online at HSBC, but you’ll want to head to HSBC Direct to open up an HSBC Direct Checking or Savings account.
Regardless of what you’re opening, to open an HSBC account you have to be at least 18 years old, have a Social Security number, have a valid U.S. ID, and have a U.S. residential address for the past three years.
In terms of how to bank with HSBC, while you can certainly bank at one of their physical branches or ATMs, most people will find it most convenient to bank online. HSBC’s online banking is completely free to use and allows you full access to your account from any computer, tablet, or smartphone.
To give you a brief idea of what you can do online, you can:
- View your account balances and transactions
- Move money
- Pay Bills and view checks
Plus, HSBC’s Personal Internet Banking is backed by their $0 Liability, Online Guarantee, which pledges that you will not be liable for any unauthorized online bill payments and funds transfers. Should you ever experience any issues, you can also reach out to HSBC specialists for help 24/7 via live chat.
Finally, for those who like to pay with their phone, you can take refuge in the fact that all consumer HSBC credit and debit cards issued by HSBC are compatible with Google Pay, Apple Pay, and Samsung Pay. This significantly improves the chances of being able to pay with your phone no matter where you are or what you’re buying.
What’s so interesting about HSBC is that it’s one of the oldest, most experienced banks in the world — having been founded in 1865 — yet it offers one of the most streamlined and modern online banking experiences around. It’s secure, easy to use, and grants you access to all banking features you would normally need to visit a physical branch to use.
Beyond this, HSBC has you covered no matter what kind of banking product you’re after. You can take advantage of no-minimum checking accounts, high-yield savings accounts, specialized credit cards, and much more. Plus, you’ll never get caught holding up another line ever again, as HSBC credit and debit cards are compatible with all common online payment systems, including Google Pay, Apple Pay, and Samsung Pay.
All of this is to say that HSBC continues to evolve and offer the best of what modern banking has to offer. It is well worth considering.