PNC Virtual Wallet review - All you need to know

TransferWise
01.25.20
6 minute read

PNC offers a full range of regular banking products, including checking and savings accounts, credit cards, loans and more. A popular choice is the PNC Virtual Wallet, which lets you manage your money online across accounts designed for checking, saving and investing.

Let’s take a look at how the PNC Virtual account works, as well as the features and fees you need to know about.

Table of contents:

PNC Virtual Wallet overview

Before we dive in, it’s good to note that the services, fees and features available from PNC may vary by location. To give a point of reference in this guide, we have used a California zip code - but you’ll want to double check availability and costs for your own state before you decide to use PNC.

Let’s take a look at the features of the PNC Virtual Wallet.

Spend, Reserve and Grow

When you open a PNC Virtual Wallet, you’re actually opening 3 accounts - Spend for checking, Reserve as an interest bearing checking option, and Grow as your long term savings vehicle.¹

You’ll get a checkbook and card linked to your Spend account, and can switch easily between accounts when you want to, using the PNC app. The Reserve and Grow accounts can be linked to your Spend account, to cover transactions which may cause you to dip into your overdraft.

Minimum account requirements

When you open a PNC Virtual Wallet, you’ll choose between the following account types:

  • PNC Virtual Wallet²
  • PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Spend³
  • PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select⁴
  • PNC Virtual Wallet - Student⁵

Each account type comes with different monthly fees, and varying requirements if you want to avoid this cost. For example, PNC will waive the fee on a regular account if you hold $500 minimum balance, but for the Performance Select you may need $5,000 in your account for the same benefit. We’ll look at these fees and limits a little later in more detail.

Rewards and deals

At the time of writing there are various opening offers available for the different wallet types - you can earn cash back and get rewarded for opening your account, to the tune of up to $300.

Security

PNC is a member of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) which means your money is stored safely, and insured in the unlikely event PNC runs into difficulties. Check out the limits and terms on this insurance, online.

Budgeting tools

One of the selling points of the Virtual Wallet is that you have several different ways to budget and save between your 3 different accounts. You can view your available funds as a bar graph, schedule upcoming bills and deposits in a calendar to predict your cash flow, and move money to savings easily.

The PNC app

As you might expect, you’re mainly going to manage your money online if you choose a PNC virtual wallet. The easiest way to do that is to get the PNC app, which lets you track and review your balances, switch between accounts, and more.


PNC Virtual Wallet fees

Let’s take a look at the fees you’ll pay to open and operate your PNC Virtual Wallet. As we mentioned above, fees may vary by state, so you’ll want to double check the fineprint for your location before you sign up.

If you expect to travel, love to shop online with international retailers, or send and receive payments overseas, it’s worth noting that PNC has relatively high fees for cross border transactions. You’ll pay up to $45 to send an international wire for example, and using your card to shop at your favourite international ecommerce retailer could mean you pay 3% more than you expect.

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As with any account, it pays to look closely at the costs before you sign up. Here are the key charges to consider.

Service Fee ⁵ ⁶ ⁷ ⁸
Minimum opening deposit $25 Minimum opening deposit may be waived if the account is opened online
Monthly fees PNC Virtual Wallet - $7PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Spend - $15PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select - $25PNC Virtual Wallet - Student - for active students there’s no fee for the first 6 years
Requirements to waive monthly fees PNC Virtual Wallet - Hold $500 balance OR receive $500 in direct payments OR account holder is over 62 years old PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Spend - Hold $2000 balance in your Virtual Wallet OR $10,000 in combined eligible PNC accounts OR receive $2000 in direct payments to your Virtual Wallet PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select - Hold $5000 balance in your Virtual Wallet and linked PNC consumer accounts OR $25,000 in combined eligible PNC consumer and investment accounts OR receive $5000 in direct payments to your Virtual Wallet
Wire payments PNC Virtual Wallet, PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Spend and PNC Virtual Wallet - Student - Incoming domestic transfers - $15Outgoing domestic transfers - $30Incoming foreign transfers - $15Outgoing foreign transfers - $45 (minimum $100 transfer value may apply) Additional fee of $15 to arrange a payment by phone Student account owners get 1 free domestic or international incoming wire per statement period PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select - Incoming and outgoing domestic transfers - freeIncoming foreign transfers - $15Outgoing foreign transfers - $45 No additional fee for wiring over the phone
International purchase fee 3% fee when spending with your card using a foreign currency
Overdraft fees $36 per transaction, up to 4 transactions per day No charge if you link your Reserve or Grow account and use this to cover any shortfall
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PNC Virtual Wallet card and ATM usage

You’ll get an ATM card automatically when you open a PNC Virtual Wallet account. You get free access to PNC’s 9,000+ ATMs in the US, and can also use your card in other ATMs at home and abroad, although you may be charged a fee.

Here’s what you need to know.

Service Fee ⁵ ⁶ ⁷ ⁸
ATM use in the US PNC ATMs are free to use PNC Virtual Wallet, PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Spend and PNC Virtual Wallet - Student - $3 to withdraw at non-PNC ATM in the US, Canada, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select - No fee for ATM withdrawals Depending on your account type and status you may be reimbursed some ATM usage fees
ATM use outside the US PNC Virtual Wallet, PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Spend and PNC Virtual Wallet - Student - $5 fee for international withdrawals + 3% international purchase or withdrawal fee if relevant PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select - 3% international purchase or withdrawal fee if relevant Depending on your account type and status you may be reimbursed some ATM usage fees

So there you have it - all you need to about the various Virtual Wallet accounts available through PNC.

If you’re looking for an innovative way to manage your money, a Virtual Wallet could be just what you need. However, if you’re planning on traveling, or regularly send or receive cross-border payments, you’ll want to take a close look at the fees for international transactions with PNC.

Before you decide which account will work for you, think about the type of transactions you’ll regularly make, and do some research into the products available from traditional banks and specialist online services. Don’t forget to check out the multi-currency account from TransferWise to see if you could save.


Sources:

  1. Virtual Wallet is Checking & Savings. Together.
  2. VIRTUAL WALLET
  3. VIRTUAL WALLET with PERFORMANCE SPEND
  4. VIRTUAL WALLET with PERFORMANCE SELECT
  5. VIRTUAL WALLET STUDENT
  6. PNC Virtual Wallet Features and Fees
  7. PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Spend Features and Fees
  8. PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select Features and Fees

All sources last checked 9 January 2020


This publication is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content in this publication. The information in this publication does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from TransferWise Limited or its affiliates. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.

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