before you open a savings account

Determine what account you're opening. It may be a registered (TFSA) account or a taxable account.​

Confirm the account you're about to open has the features you expect.  Make sure you know how to transfer money between the savings account you're opening and your chequing account.

The bank will want to know:your name, address, date of birth, telephone number, whether you're a student, and where your income comes from (family, gift, part time / full time work are all good answers, so are being a student / looking for work). They will ask where you pay taxes - probably ‘Canada'. 

You'll have to provide your SIN (social insurance number) because you will be paying tax on the interest you’ll earn.

  • Online banks may also use it to verify your identity through the 'soft' credit check. It does not affect your credit score and is not visible to anybody viewing your credit report.
  • Everything you need to know about the SIN.

After you sign the application, the banker should be able to open the account immediately.

You'll get a customer card to identify your account. Ask the banker to help you set up online / mobile access.

At a different bank

​​Prepare your IDs. Banks need two pieces of ID:  a government-issued photo ID and proof of address. Try to bring your driver’s license and passport. What if you don’t have those?​​

​​​​at the same bank as your chequing

If you're opening a savings account at the same bank as your chequing account, you should be able to open it online because the bank already has your personal information.

Complete the online application on your bank's website. Start by finding the account you're interested in and click on "Apply" or "Open".

You'll use your debit card to access your savings account at branches / ATMs.

Traditional Banks

Don’t complete online applications, you’ll have to go to the bank anyway to show your IDs. 

OPEN A Savings account

Online Banks

When you complete your application online, the bank will email you a reference number.  Take it to a Canada Post office along with your IDs.​ 

Some banks can verify your identity online.

How do online banks know you're who you say you are?​