You and Your Money

The banks at Yorkfest, what they gave, and what they have
Rahman Mohamed

So you were at Clubs Day for Yorkfest on September 18 and got free give-ways?  Nothing topped The YFS Liberation of a Generation in a bag – including a folding clipboard holding coupons, a single serving Rubicon Passion Fruit and Mango juice agenda, free T-shirt and more. The only thing that came close was the Toronto Star Campus Survival Pack – Krave, Axe Chicken Alfredo, Frost mints, Nivea Lip care, Dentyne, and coupons.

Then there were the banks – offering give-ways while advertising student accounts. So which of the Yorkfest Banks has the best student account for a York student?

First up, Scotiabank. To get a prize here you had to drop two pucks. If they land next to each other you get a prize – a bag or ball; but everyone got a coupon for SCENE points if you open a Student Account with Scotiabank.

So what does an account at Scotiabank offer?

· Paperless (online banking)
· No charge for a paper statement; $2 for a paper statement with a Cheque Image Return
· No charge for a passbook
· No monthly account fee
· Unlimited debit transactions
· SCENE movie rewards when you use your debit card IF you sign up for the SCENE debit card

Next door to Scotiabank, TD Canada Trust. Everyone knows about the TD Scholarship ($10,000/year). At York they’ve got a lineup of ATMs by the Scott library. At Yorkfest they were giving away lanyards, posters and Mac and Cheese after the spin of a wheel for the chance to win $50. But is their account worth $50?

· 25 free transactions a month; additional transactions $1/transaction
· No monthly fee
· No minimum balance
· Free Online Banking

Competing with TD’s Mac and Cheese – President’s Choice Mac and Cheese. Open an account here and get a pack of PC Mac and Cheese. PC Financial doesn’t have a specified Student Banking plan – you can open a No Fee Chequing Account or an “Interest Plus Savings Account”. If you wanted the Mac and Cheese you had to get a PC No Fee Chequing Account.

· EVERYTHING in the account (online banking, cheques, etc.) is free
· You can use PC Financial or CIBC banking machines for free
· There’s no minimum balance
· No limit
· Earn interest on your daily balance
· Earn PC points

The only bank with a branch at York is BMO | Bank of Montreal. At their booth it was spin the wheel again, but this time there was a twist – answer a question. Topics included politics, Canada, York, and banking. In return you got info about BMO and a prize – a water bottle, notebook and pen, 50 free Air Miles, a Frisbee, or a $10 McDonald Gift Card. Diverse prizes and diverse ways to get one; but a diverse range of accounts too. A student account (Plus Plan) with them gives you:

· No fee
· 30 transactions/month
· 2 Interac e-Transfers/month

On the Performance Plan Student Account

· $4/month (regular $13.95/month)
· Unlimited transactions
· 2 Interac e-Transfers/month

Premium Plan Student Account

· $15.05/month (regular $25/month)
· Unlimited transactions
· Earn 1 Air Mile for every $40 you spend on your debit card (maximum 40 Miles/month)

Alone by Founders on the basketball court with regular foosball and “human foosball” was CIBC. If you applied for a CIBC credit card at Yorkfest you were entered into a chance to win $500 and got a free Frisbee. If you opened an account, a 2GB USB. If you open a CIBC Student Advantage for Students account you get:

· No monthly fees
· Unlimited transactions
· $1.50 to send an Interac e-Transfer but free to receive one
· Free online banking and free account inquires
· $1.50 for non-CIBC ATM withdrawal

RBC Royal Bank wasn’t at Yorkfest but they do have the most ATMs at Keele and Glendon. What do they offer?

· $10.95/month; $0/month if you “hold each of the following eligible RBC products: An RBC Royal Bank investment or RBC Direct Investing™ account and An eligible RBC Royal Bank credit card”

· Unlimited debits

· Free online and telephone banking

· “Choice of a Signature RBC Rewards, RBC Visa Cash Back Visa or WestJet RBC MasterCard and save up to $39 a year off the annual fee”

You’re going to have to keep your money somewhere while you’re at York. You can’t get any better than a bank. Each has its costs and benefits; before you decide, check out their websites.

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