• Choice Checking

    All the flexibility you need with features and options to match your life

  • Get
    $100  
    for opening an account with qualified direct deposits. (details)*  
    Open Account
     
  • Find out if Choice Checking is right for you

    Your life changes every day. So you need a checking account that’s flexible enough to keep pace with you — and then some. That’s why Choice Checking delivers the most options to earn free checking with valuable account benefits, including some ATM fee waivers1.

    With Choice Checking, the monthly service fee is waived if you meet just one of the following requirements:

    • Maintain Direct Deposit
    • Complete 10 point-of-sale purchase transactions (per billing cycle)
    • Maintain a daily minimum balance of at least $300
    • Maintain at least $5,000 combined  balances in deposits or loans (excludes mortgages and credit card balances)

    See our At-A-Glance Fees, Terms & Conditions (PDF) and the Retail Account Disclosure Booklet (PDF) for more information.

    How do I open these files?

    Select your Choice Checking options

    Simplify your life and do your banking online. Enroll online for free so you can monitor balances, review your statement, view your check history, and more.

    Online Bill Pay can make your life even easier. Set up regularly scheduled payments for monthly bills, and one-time bill payments for anything else. Learn more about Bill Pay.

    Let’s face it — overdrafts happen sometimes. That’s why you can choose optional overdraft protection for your account to give you added peace of mind (restrictions and fees apply). Learn more about Overdraft Protection.

    Discover the benefits of Choice Checking

    Of course all of your First Niagara ATM usage is free. But when you’re in a rush, you may want the choice to use a non-First Niagara ATM. With Choice Checking we’ll waive our fee for using another institution’s ATM in the U.S. or Canada twice per billing cycle. However, you may still be charged an ATM terminal fee or surcharge from the other institutions.1

    If you’re interested in unlimited free ATM usage in the U.S. (including rebates of other bank’s fees) check out our Pinnacle Checking Account.

    Other benefits you’ll enjoy include: 

    • With your Debit MasterCard® and Apple Pay™, you can pay participating retailers securely with just one touch
    • Free 1st order of standard checks
    • Discount of 0.25% on loans and lines of credit, with autopay (excludes credit cards and mortgages)
    • Free First Niagara Mobile Banking app with Mobile Check Deposit (available to eligible customers)
    • Choice of monthly eStatement or mailed paper statement
    • Free access to any First Niagara ATM

    Understand Choice Checking terms and conditions

    We want to help you understand the details of your account. So remember:

    • Your first two non-First Niagara ATM transactions in the U.S. and Canada per statement cycle are free. 
    • The two free transactions per statement cycle excludes international ATMs.  
    • After the first two, we charge $2.50 for each transaction made at an ATM in the U.S. or Canada that does not belong to First Niagara and $5 for ATM usage outside the US and Canada. 
    • You may be charged a terminal fee or surcharge by another bank when using your First Niagara ATM card or Debit MasterCard at their ATM. 
    • ATM surcharges from other banks are not rebated with Choice Checking. 

    If you do not meet one of the requirements to maintain free checking, you will be charged a monthly service fee of $9.95.

    Overdraft Protection is always optional and subject to additional restrictions and fees. 

    You can review complete details of this account in our Retail Account Disclosure Booklet

    How do I open these files?

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1ATM surcharges from other banks are not rebated. Two free per statement cycle excludes international ATMs.

*$100 BONUS (First Niagara Simple Checking, Choice Checking, Pinnacle Checking, and PinnaclePlus Checking Only) To qualify for the $100 cash bonus you must open your new First Niagara Simple Checking, Choice, Pinnacle or PinnaclePlus Checking account online, and within 60 days of account opening you must receive direct deposits totaling $250 or more. Your direct deposits need to be an electronic deposit of your paycheck, pension or government benefits (such as Social Security) from your employer or the government. The cash bonus will be deposited into your new checking account within 30 days from end of month in which direct deposits totaling $250 or more are made to your account. Account must be open and maintain a positive balance in order to receive the bonus. Promotion available only to customers who open their new account online, is not transferable and cannot be combined with any other promotional rate or reward/bonus programs. Valid only for individuals who have not had any consumer checking relationship with First Niagara in the previous 365 days. Customers may only receive a bonus on one account. Customers must be residents of CT, MA, PA or NY to take advantage of this offer. Not available to Trust or Estate accounts. Bank employees and members of their household are not eligible for this promotion. The cash bonus will be reported as a payment of interest in accordance with Internal Revenue Service regulations and will appear on your IRS 1099-INT for the year in which the bonus is paid to you. Promotion runs through 6/30/2015, and can be withdrawn at any time. Account must remain open for 180 days to avoid a $25 Early Account Closing fee. All accounts subject to approval and applicable fees.


Minimum opening deposit is $50 for First Niagara Simple Checking, Choice and Pinnacle checking and $500 for PinnaclePlus checking. Pinnacle and PinnaclePlus checking are interestbearing accounts. Interest-bearing accounts are variable rate accounts, which means we may change rates at any time. Interest Rates will not be tied to any index but will be set by us at our discretion. There is no limitation on the amount by which Interest Rates may change. As of 3/21/15, Pinnacle and PinnaclePlus Checking accounts earn an Annual Percentage Yield (APY) of 0.01% for all balances and First Niagara Companion Savings earns an APY of 0.10% for balances of $200 or greater. Fees may reduce earnings on interest-bearing accounts.

Apple Pay is a trademark of Apple Inc.

MasterCard is a registered trademark of MasterCard International Incorporated.
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