From budgeting for the household to being the sole breadwinner of the family, women have become increasingly financially independent over time. In order to tap this relatively new market, a lot of banks and financial institutions have come up with products and services aimed at women to boost their participation in personal finance. Women’s savings account, which comes with benefits such as cashbacks and discounts, is one such product. Let’s look at some of the higher benefits offered on these accounts.
Who can benefit from it?
A women’s savings account can be opened individually by women or as the primary holder in a jointly-held account. While the minimum balance required is the same for both regular and women’s savings account, the benefits offered on women’s savings account are much higher. There are rewards and benefits associated with these accounts and the debit cards linked to them. However, this service is only available in select cities.
Benefits associated with women’s savings account
Features of a women’s savings account vary from bank to bank. Here’ a list of some of the prominent features available in the market:
Higher ATM withdrawal and shopping limits
Banks offer higher limit for cash withdrawals at ATMs and for debit card purchases for women’s savings account compared to regular savings account. While the cash withdrawal limit on a regular savings account is Rs 50,000 and the daily purchase limit at the retail outlets for online transactions is Rs 1 lakh, the cash withdrawal limit at ATMs from a women’s savings account can go up to is Rs 1 lakh and the daily purchase limit at retail outlets can extend up to Rs 2 lakh. Some banks offer unlimited cash withdrawals from any bank’s ATM for women’s savings accounts.
Zero balance account for children
Some banks offer the option of opening a zero balance account for your children along with the women’s savings account. This could help inculcate the habit of saving in children. However, the children need to be below the age of 18 years.
Auto sweep-in facility
Most of these accounts come with an auto sweep in facility, which allows you to enjoy the liquidity of a savings account and the higher interest rate of a fixed deposit at the same time. You can set a standing instruction with your bank to create a fixed deposit account with the surplus amount in your account. If your balance is below the threshold, the fixed deposit is closed and the proceeds are credited into your account.
Insurance and discounted health check-ups
A prominent bank offers accidental hospitalisation cover of Rs 1 lakh and accidental death cover of Rs 10 lakh with the women’s savings account. The personal accidental cover (rail, road, air) is Rs 5 lakh. You get an additional international air coverage of Rs 25 lakh on purchasing air tickets through the bank’s debit card.
Another bank offers group personal accidental cover of Rs 5 lakh and discounted health checkups against women’s savings account. The discount can go up to 40 per cent of the prevailing market rate.
Special discounts and offers
You can get cashbacks on purchases of jewelry, transactions in departmental stores, dinning spends and entertainment. You can avail 50 per cent discount on locker rentals for the first year through a women’s savings account with a prominent bank. Other benefits that you can avail include preferred rates on home loan, two-wheelers and auto loan, gold and personal loan. The processing fee is waived off by many banks on loans against women’s savings account.
Most banks do not offer flexibility in terms of the minimum balance that you need to maintain in these accounts when compared with regular savings accounts. Considering the features associated with these accounts vary from bank to bank, you must take a call on whether to open a women’s bank account or not upon comparing the cost and features offered based on your needs.
The author is CEO, BankBazaar