Wells Fargo vs Citibank (Which is Better?)

When we talk about the top banking institutions of America, it hardly happens that someone forgets to mention the names of Citibank and Wells Fargo. Both of these offer loans, mortgages, customer accounts, and credit/debit services.

However, when we compare them head to head, Citibank moves far ahead in terms of everything. It has more ATMs, better customer support, and even higher interest rates in its savings and CD accounts. Moreover, the minimum deposit amount is also low.

But Wells Fargo has better offline support with a massive network of over 4,900+ branches and even a $0 stop payment fee.

Wells Fargo vs Citibank

FeatureWells FargoCitibank
Checking Monthly Fee$10$12
Checking Minimum Deposit$25$0
Savings Monthly Fee$5$4.50
Savings Return0.01%0.08%
CD Earning1 Year 0.01%,1 Year 0.10%, 5 Year 0.15%
CD Minimum Deposit$2,500$500
Phone Hours24 Hours24 Hours
Overdraft Fee$35, limit 3 per day$34, limit 4 per day

Citibank is a far better bank in almost every way when compared to Wells Fargo. However, there are a few tidbits where it lags.

For example, Citibank has only 600 branches in the US as compared to Wells Fargo which has over 4,900 branches. Moreover, the stop payment fee is $30, which is free in the case of Wells Fargo customers.

As far as other aspects are concerned, the annual rates in savings and CD accounts are higher in Citibank. Moreover, they have a much lower minimum deposit amount and lower monthly account maintenance fees.

Citibank Pros and Cons

Citibank is for those customers who prefer convenience, superior customer support, better annual return rates, and a low minimum deposit amount.

Citibank Pros
  • A vast number of ATMs (60,000+)
  • Higher APY rates
  • Low minimum deposit amounts
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Lower monthly account maintenance fees
  • Low return deposit fees
Citibank Cons
  • A limited number of branches in the US (600+)
  • High stop payment fees ($10)

Wells Fargo Pros and Cons

Customers who want better offline support and the convenience of more branches can choose Wells Fargo for opening their accounts, and with Wells Fargo, the stop payment fee is $0.

Wells Fargo Pros
  • More number of branches (4900+)
  • No stop payment fee
  • Privileges to teenage account holders
Wells Fargo Cons
  • Low APY rates, both in Savings as well as CD accounts
  • Average Customer Support
  • The minimum deposit amounts are high
  • The monthly account maintenance fees are also very high

Checking Account Comparison

Checking AccountWells FargoCitibank
Monthly Fee$10$12
Minimum Opening Deposit  $25$0
APY Rate0.00%0.00%
Waive Wells Fargo fee by having direct deposits worth $500 or more monthly and maintaining a daily balance of at least $500. Waive Citibank fee by having a direct deposit or bill payment at least once a month and maintain a regular balance of $1,500 monthly

Although the monthly account maintenance fee is more or less the same for both banks, Citibank account holders can waive this fee through minimum deposits or account balances.

Moreover, Citibank users of 62 and above have their maintenance fees waived off permanently. Also, Citibank customers enjoy a $0 minimum account opening deposit.

Savings Account Comparison

Savings AccountWells FargoCitibank
Monthly Maintenance Fee$5$4.50
Minimum Deposit$25$0
Waive Wells Fargo fee by having an average balance of at least $300 and have a recurring auto transfer of $25/month. Waive Citibank fee by having an average monthly balance of $500 and do a direct deposit or pay bills at least once a month or even have at least a $1,500 monthly balance

As we can see that the monthly maintenance fee of Citibank is slightly lower than Wells Fargo. Moreover, the APY rates are also quite attractive.

In both these banks you can waive off the monthly maintenance fee, however, the waiving criteria in the case of Citibank are a lot more viable. Also, Citibank customers enjoy a $0 minimum account opening deposit.

Citibank Certificate of Deposit Comparison

Certificate of DepositWells FargoCitibank
APY- 1 Year0.01%0.10%
APY- 3 YearsNo Standard Rates0.10%
APY- 5 YearsNo Standard Rates0.15%
Minimum Deposit$2,500$500

Opening a Certificates of Deposit account in Wells Fargo is pointless. You will get far attractive returns in Citibank. Moreover, the minimum deposit to open a CD is almost one-fifth when compared to Wells Fargo.

Fees Comparison

FeesWells FargoCitibank
ATM  $2.50$2.50
Overdraft  $35$34
Stop Payment  $0$30
Return Deposit  $35$12
Wire TransferDomestic $15
International $30
Domestic $15
International $25

Here we can see that if you compare ATM fees, overdraft fees, and wire transfer fees, both banks have the same charges. You can opt for any one of them.

However, the return deposit fee is lower in the case of Citibank while Wells Fargo charges a $0 stop payment fee.

Is Citibank Better Than Wells Fargo?

Although both Wells Fargo and Citibank offer similar perks and drawbacks, they are almost evenly matched. Overall, Citibank has an average lesser fee, lesser minimum deposit value, and higher APY returns.

Wells Fargo
  • More number of branches
  • No stop payment fees
  • Great benefits for teenage accounts
  • High APY Rates
  • Low Fees when compared to Wells Fargo
  • Low minimum deposit values
  • More number of ATMs
  • And better overall customer support.