Purpose of Writing a New Tangerine Bank Review
Tangerine’s Chequing Account is considered one of the best Chequing Accounts in Canada. I had a positive experience with Tangerine’s Chat Support today leading to a $40 fee cancellation. I am going to talk about my today experience first and then do a review of Tangerine’s products.
My Experience with Tangerine’s Support
It all began when I put a plan to transfer all my wife and myself money out of Tangerine to EQ and eventually to WealthSimple.
Tangerine’s special 2% offer for our account expires by end of Feb 2021 so I put a pull request via EQ to transfer from Tangerine to EQ. However, to my surprise, I get a notification email saying my transfer request was declined due insufficient fund and I got dinged an unfair but disclosed $40 NSF fee.
I was mad at myself and wondered how it happened. I went to EQ and of course I chose the transfer to be done from my Chequing account rather than the Saving account which had the fund.
Chequing account only had $5 so my balance became -$35 after the $40 NSF Fee.
I logged in to Tangerine this morning Saturday Feb 27th and started a chat session with Angela. She was understandable and offered a rebate of $20. I was (un)happy so thanked her and explained I realize she is doing her job. However, I expected better from Tangerine. I said this is the first time I needed Tangerine’s assistant, and this will not be a good experience.
She kept on saying this is the best she can offer. At that point, I was really frustrated. Not at Tangerine but myself. It is only $40 but still painful loss of earned money. So, I told Angela that because Tangerine with its multi billion asset does not want to help when I am in need and is seeking the fees even though I have the money but in a different account, I will move my money and close my accounts.
I think the threat of closing my accounts did the trick which made her be kind and rebate the full amount exceptionally! And that is how everyone ended up happy 😊 Hence, I consider my personal experience with Tangerine’s Chat Support Angela a great experience. Thanks, Angela!
Despite the many available online reviews, today’s experience led me to write about my personal interaction and how Tangerine has been serving me since 2011. I will be unbiased and only say what I truly feel about Tangerine. Except the referral links I put, I don’t gain anything directly from Tangerine or any other banks on this review.
ING Direct Canada becomes Tangerine
In November 2012 Scotiabank completed the acquisition of ING Direct Canada from ING Groep NV, the Netherlands-based parent company of ING Direct Canada in a CAD$3.1 billion deal first announced in August 2012.
On November 5, 2013, ING Direct Canada revealed that its name would be changed to Tangerine in early 2014.
My Personal Historical Relationship with Tangerine
Tangerine was not my first Canadian bank. Ironically, I chose Tangerine which is owned by Scotiabank after closing my Scotiabank account in 2011. I became Tangerine’s client not just because I liked their Fair Fees by the time, but also my father had an ING Direct account for decades which was with the main ING Direct branch in the Netherlands.
This somehow made me feel connected to my past and my father which subsequently led to opening my ING Direct Canada account.
Why switching to smaller players like Tangerine?
I believe nobody should pay for day-to-day banking specially nowadays where it is part of everyone’s life. Hence, I am totally against any bank charging clients for chequing accounts.
There are some bank accounts which waive the fees for keeping a certain amount of money monthly. For instance, TD Every Day Chequing Account charges a high $10.95 monthly fee which can be waived if keeping minimum $3,000 in the account daily. If the balance goes below this amount even for 1 day, they will charge the $10.95.
Some individuals do not mind keeping $3000 in an account which has 0.000% interest which can be translated to not gaining (losing) a potential $45 / year (Considering a 1.5% interest rate in a bank like EQ Bank). However, if this individual has a balance below $3000 in only one day per year, their loss is increasing to $55.95.
Now back to our Tangerine discussion, YES switch to Tangerine! Unless you need some special benefits, using a big bank is pointless. You can do online banking easily and do not need a human interaction or a face-to-face customer service which will eventually be a thing of the past.
EARN AN EXTRA $50 by using my Tangerine Referral Orange Key. 43640010S1. Remember to enter my Tangerine Referral code (Orange Key) 43640010S1 to get your $50 extra bonus.
Tangerine Bank’s Chequing Account Features Review
Tangerine’s Chequing Account Feature 1 – A Visa Debit Card
Tangerine’s new cards are Visa Debits which is a new addition to Tangerine’s benefits which you can read more about here.
- I consider Tangerine’s Visa in addition to being a Debit card a benefit because it is a feature you can use without headache. You can make online and in-app purchases with ease. It acts like a prepaid visa card.
- The card comes in 2 colors. I chose the silver which I regret because only one side is silver. My first ever card with a different color on each side.
- I do not use nor recommend using the Visa feature unless you are out of options. This card is a prepaid card and do not offer any cash back.
Tangerine’s Chequing Account Feature 2 – A Free Chequing Account
- I consider Tangerine’s free chequing a benefit. A great $0 daily chequing fee
- Includes an unlimited number of debit purchases, bill payments, and pre-authorized payments
- Includes an unlimited number of Email Money Transfers and Interac e-Transfer transactions
Tangerine’s Chequing Account Feature 3 – Free ABM Access
- I do not consider Tangerine’s limited Free ABM Access as a benefit. Free access to 3,500 Scotiabank ATMs in Canada and 44,000 ATMs worldwide through Scotiabank’s Global ATM Alliance.
- Tangerine failed me multiple times in Mexico and Central America where it did not work to withdraw money.
- Tangerine charges 2.5% foreign exchange fee no matter what ATM you use. If the withdrawal is in a foreign currency (USD, EU, etc) they charge you an additional 2.5%.
- I replaced Tangerine with the amazing STACK CARD which offers so many features including No foreign exchange fees, and No ATM withdrawal fees.
- I appreciate if you use my STACK referral link and get $5 in your account when you activate your card. Thank you. https://getstackco.app.link/Df4rsIogeeb
Tangerine’s Chequing Account Feature 4 – Overdraft Protection
- I consider Tangerine’s Overdraft Protection a benefit as it helps avoiding paying the $40 Non-Sufficient Funds (NSF) fee.
- If your Account is short of funds, your Overdraft Protection will automatically kick in.
- It covers only up to $3000 so it couldn’t save me last night for my transfer to EQ and the NSF fee which was returned to me (Read the story at the top if you skipped it)
Tangerine’s Chequing Account Feature 4 – Track and categorize your spending
- I consider Tangerine’s Categorizing a conditional benefit
- It is usually pointless unless you only use Tangerine cards for all your expenses
- For me, this is not an advantage personally as I use Credit Cards with cash back for every purchase accepting a Credit payment including foreign transactions where I use Rogers Mastercard or Brim Mastercard.
Brim Financial has a referral program. When you refer your friends to open a Brim MasterCard, you will earn 2000 points ($20 value) for every friend that successfully signs-up and activates card. Then your friends will receive 1000 points ($10 value) when they activate.
If you need a Brim Referral Code to get $10 and then refer your own friends to get $2o, please consider using mine. Thank you! 62333 (Brim Referral Link: https://brimfinancial.com/?code= 62333)
Tangerine’s Chequing Account Other Features
- Cheque-In: Deposit cheques instantly from your mobile device using the Cheque-In feature on your Mobile App. I have used this feature once and it is indeed convenient.
- Bank drafts: Order a bank draft online and have it delivered to your door or to your closest Tangerine Café. Canadian draft cost $10. This is higher price comparing with others.
- Orange Alerts: Customize your preferences to receive important Account alerts through text or email. This is one of the best features as it is a very customizable notification feature.
- Mobile Wallet: Convenient ways to pay with your Tangerine Client Card and Money-Back Credit Card. I never noticed Tangerine has Mobile Wallet till now.
- Cheque book: First 50 cheques are free while additional chequebooks are $50 each
Tangerine Bank’s Savings Accounts
Tangerine offers five different savings accounts, including non registered savings, TFSA, US Dollar, RRSP and RRIF saving accounts. I personally do not recommend using Tangerine Savings Accounts now unless you get a special promotion.
They send promotions to selective customers from time to time. For instance, my wife and I had the special 2% offer which ends by end of Feb 2021. When the promotion expires, interest drifts down to the current Interest rate: 0.10% which is pathetic! Meanwhile, EQ’s HISA is 1.5%.
Tangerine Bank’s GICs
Tangerine also offers GICs from 0.20% for 3 months up to 1.10% for 5 years. Not a product I recommend to anyone considering how low the interest is.
Tangerine Bank’s Investing
Tangerine offers two type of products for its investment. Core Portfolios (Mutual Fund) and Global ETF Portfolios
Tangerine Core (Mutual Fund) Portfolio Investing
There are 5 different Portfolios. Balanced Income, Balanced, Balanced Growth, Dividend, Equity Growth. These portfolios come with a very high Management Expense Ratio (MER) fee of 1.06%. This means you end up paying $106 on every $10K per year in fees.
I used the Equity Growth Portfolio in the past but avoided paying fees by selling it for a profit in couple months before the fees kicked in.
There are many cheaper ways to invest than using Tangerine’s expensive Mutual Funds. Consider below the top holdings on Tangerines Dividend Portfolio. An investor who doesn’t mind spending some time online, can purchase these stocks directly without paying any extra fees.
Tangerine Global ETF Portfolios
This is Tangerine’s newest addition to the investing family. Tangerine realized investors are not interested in paying high fees for Mutual funds so invented their own ETFs. They have 3 type of ETF Portfolios. Balanced ETF (40% Bonds, 60% Stocks), Balanced Growth ETF (25% Bonds, 76% Stocks), and Equity Growth ETF (100% Stocks).
These ETFs come with a high Management and Admin Fees 0.65%. All these ETFs hold different percentage of other ETFs. Detailed fund can be found here. Similar to Mutual Funds, they are expensive and should be avoided as there are many cheaper (and free) alternatives.
Tangerine Bank’s Credit Cards
Tangerine Money-Back Mastercard offers 2% unlimited cash back up to 3 selected categories. All other non-selected categories will get a 0.5% cash back. The categories are grocery, furniture, restaurants, hotels, gasoline, bills, drug store, home improvement, entertainment, and public transportation | parking. There is no annual fee, and its interest rate is 19.95%.
Tangerine World Mastercard is another no fee Credit Card with same 2% on selected 3 categories as above. However, it comes with some features, like free Boingo Wi-Fi anywhere in the world, access to Mastercard airport lounges and its travel reward program, insurance (car rental and mobile device). more. To be eligible, you need to have a gross household income of $100,000 or more and total balances of $250,000 in Tangerine savings or investment accounts.
Other Tangerine’s Services and Products
Line of credit to borrow money to pay off at your discretion, with a low variable interest rate and no annual fee.
Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) with a 2.35% loan payback interest rate
Mortgage which is currently 1.74% for a 5 Year fixed term or 2.14% for 10 Year Fixed term
RSP Loan with a 1.49% interest rate. You can choose to repay your Loan in 12 payments over 1 year or, if you prefer, wait 3 months, and repay the Loan in full over the following 9 months.
Please take into consideration the fees charged by Tangerine. For example, there is a $50 RSP, TFSA, or RIF transfer fee from Tangerine to other banks. A complete list of Fees can be found here. Other important fees to consider are ATM Usage Fee ($1 Canada, $2 Foreign), NSF Fee ($40), and Stop Payment Fee (1 Free yearly then $10 each)
Final Notes, Summary, and My Verdict
- I highly recommend Tangerine Chequing Account as it comes with great benefits including $0 monthly fees, unlimited Interac transfers, $50 free cheques, and free access to all Scotiabank ATMs.
- I do not recommend Tangerine Saving Account unless you are close to retirement or retired and do not want to take any risk. Then only consider Tangerine if you get a special offer more than what other banks like EQ provide (Currently 1.5%). Also count in the $50 transfer out fee for registered accounts. Tangerine current interest rate is 0.10% which is terrible.
- Tangerine offers phone and chat support which I love. There is no direct interaction with employees in bank branches but there are limited Cafes which are currently located only in downtown Toronto, Toronto North, Vancouver, Montreal, and Calgary.
With the world becoming digital more and more, I think everyone can and should adopt to the change. Nevertheless, if you need a traditional Brick and Mortar bank, Tangerine will not be a good choice.
Is opening an account with worth it? Absolutely. Getting all the mentioned features for FREE is a smart choice. If you decided to open your Tangerine account, do not forget that you can get a $150 bonus plus a 2.10% special rate just for opening your account.
In addition, EARN AN EXTRA $50 by using my Tangerine Referral Orange Key. 43640010S1. Remember to enter my Tangerine Referral code (Orange Key) 43640010S1 to get your $50 extra bonus.
Do you bank with Tangerine? If yes, leave me your reviews of Tangerine. If no, why not considering it? I would love to know your reasoning behind declining their free banking (Maybe you are happy with Simplii or Meridian). Let me know!