Small business owners these days are very different from even a decade ago. People are taking their passions and interests to turn them into full-time side hustles. The banking services for these types of business owners are lacking.
Luckily, Oxygen Bank offers a solution for freelancers to separate their personal and business finances and manage them easily through online banking. In this Oxygen Bank review, we’ll discuss the advantages, disadvantages, and everything in between that you should know about opening a bank account with this service.
Ready? Let’s get started!
What is Oxygen Bank?
Oxygen Bank is a financial technology company that offers banking services designed for small business owners. To open an account, you must download the Oxygen bank app on iOS or Android.
The company’s CEO Hussein Ahmed, founded Oxygen Bank in 2018. It has raised over $24 million in funding over two rounds to date.
Oxygen is not a bank on its own. It partners with The Bancorp Bank to offer its banking services and provide Federal Deposit Insurance Corp (FDIC insurance) to users. Account owners are insured up to $250,000.
What does Oxygen Bank Offer?
Made especially for side hustlers, freelancers, and small businesses, Oxygen offers a great mobile banking experience. Below are the highlights of what an account with Oxygen Bank offers.
Oxygen Bank breaks down its business checking/savings accounts into four categories, named after elements. “Earth,” “Water,” “Air,” and “Fire” all have different account perks.
All bank accounts come with the following features:
- $1 cashback on food and coffee
- Cell phone protection
- Extended warranty protection
- Mobile bill pay
- Early direct deposits (up to two days early)
- Lost luggage protection
- Baggage delay protection
- Auto rental collision damage waiver
- Hotel theft protection
- Send money to friends
- 40K fee-free Allpoint Network ATMs nationwide
Earth Business Account
There’s no annual fee, initial qualifications, or annual qualifications for this account. You’ll receive a PVC foiled card with this account plus:
- 2% cashback
- Savings rate of 0.50%
- In app ACH pull from external accounts limit of $1,000/day or $10,000/month
- Up to 3 Savings goals
- 3 active virtual cards
Water Business Account
There is a $19.99 annual fee (waived in subsequent years if you meet the annual qualifications). The initial qualifications are 30 consecutive days of qualifying deposit/spend ($1,500 month/$500 month).
The annual qualifications are twelve cumulative qualifying deposits/spend per year. Your Visa debit card is an embedded metal card, and you’ll also get these additional perks:
- 4% cashback
- Savings rate of 1.00%
- In app ACH pull from external accounts limit of $1,500/day or $15,000/month
- Up to 10 Savings goals
- Netflix 2 month reimbursement
- 15 active virtual cards
Air Business Account
There is a $49.99 annual fee (waived in subsequent years when annual qualifications are met). The initial qualifications are 30 consecutive days of qualifying deposit/spend ($3,000 month/$1,000/month).
The annual qualification is twelve cumulative qualifying deposits/spending over 1 year. Your Visa debit card is an all-metal card, and you’ll also get these additional perks:
- 5% cashback
- Savings rate of 2.00%
- Unlimited savings goals
- In app ACH pull from external accounts limit of $3,000/day or $30,000/month
- 2 month Netflix reimbursement
- 2 month Peloton Digital reimbursement
- Unlimited virtual cards
- Priority Pass Annual Membership plus 5 visits
Fire Business Account
There is a $199.99 annual fee (waived in subsequent years when annual qualifications are met. The initial qualifications are 30 consecutive days of qualifying deposit/spend ($6,000 month/$2,000 month)
The annual qualification is twelve cumulative qualifying deposits/spend over 1 year. Your Visa debit card is a mechanically engraved all-metal card, and you’ll also get these additional perks:
- 6% cashback
- Savings rate of 3.00%
- In app ACH pull from external accounts limit of $6,000/day or $60,000/month
- Unlimited savings goals
- 2 month Netflix reimbursement
- 2 month Peloton Digital reimbursement
- Priority Pass Annual Membership plus 10 visits
- Global Entry Reimbursement/TSA Precheck Fee Credit
- Unlimited virtual cards
Oxygen Bank Account Features
Oxygen accounts have no monthly fees, minimum balance requirements, or minimum balance fees. The bank accounts have unlimited fee-free transactions that include ACH transfers, direct deposits, mobile check deposits, and incoming domestic wire transfers.
There are no physical branches, and you can’t receive physical checks. You can use its free bill pay service to send mailed checks to businesses and individuals located in the United States.
Cash back Rewards Program
An Oxygen business account also comes with a regards program. This allows you to earn cashback when using your Visa business debit card to make purchases.
You can view and select the cashback offers on the mobile app. Purchases made at participating retailers are tracked on the app.
After you reach at least $10 in earnings, you can cash out your rewards. Rewards are deposited into your Oxygen account.
If you need to withdraw cash, you have access to over 55,000 Allpoint ATMs worldwide. These are unlimited fee-free transactions.
You can’t deposit cash to these ATM locations with your Oxygen bank account, however.
There are over 90,000 participating Green Dot locations in the U.S. that you can use to deposit cash. There’s a service fee of up to $4.95 for cash deposits that you are subject to.
The maximum cash deposit limit is $10,000 per month. Most online banks don’t have this type of access at all.
The Oxygen mobile app has many tools that come with its business account. These include check deposits, bill pay, account statements, cashback rewards, and cash flow projections.
The business checking account also allows you to upload and tag deductive expenses, monitor transactions, and integrate them into your accounting software.
The Oxygen app also gives you the ability to create virtual cards. These can be temporary or reusable. The cards can link up to your bank account and be used for online or over-the-phone purchases without needing your physical Oxygen Visa business debit card.
You can create up to 10 virtual cards at one time with a limit of $1,000 per card. You can also control monthly spending and assign authorized merchants. Your virtual cards can be frozen or canceled using the mobile app.
LLC Formation Services
It really goes to show you that Oxygen Bank is committed to helping side hustlers and freelancers level up their business. You must pay the applicable state fees when using these services.
Every state is covered with this feature.
How does Oxygen Bank work?
You’ll need to download the Oxygen Bank app to open a personal and business account. Oxygen Bank primarily caters to freelancers and business owners.
But you can open a personal account if you’re not quite ready to start a small business.
There are no monthly fee requirements.
Its partnership with Bancorp Bank means that your account is FDIC insured.
After downloading the app, you can open a personal or business account. You’ll fill out your personal or business information and submit an application.
Generally, it takes a few business days to review your account.
If you opened a business account, you’ll need to provide digital copies of your paperwork, including the operating agreement and EIN letter.
After you’ve submitted your documents, you’re ready to use your account. You can fund using Stripe, set up your direct deposit, generate virtual cards, deposit checks, and more.
Oxygen Bank will send you a physical Visa business debit card in the mail within a few days. To use the card, you must activate it first.
Oxygen Bank Pros and Cons
Pro: No Monthly Fees
There are no monthly maintenance fees on any of Oxygen’s business checking accounts. No monthly fees for business accounts are a nice perk.
Pro: Combines Savings and Checking
Whether your use Oxygen Bank to use as a personal or business account, you get both a checking and savings. The ability to create savings goals also helps users manage their money better.
Pro: Mobile App is Highly Rated
The user reviews for both the Android and iOS versions are favorable overall. Users describe the app as easy to navigate and having a nice interface.
Pro: High Savings Rate
Your personal accounts will enjoy a higher than average market rate. Even if you get the basic account, you’ll enjoy a savings rate that’s likely higher than any other traditional financial institution.
Pro: Account Perks are Nice
Once you qualify for a higher-tier personal account, Oxygen Bank offers some nice incentives. Oxygen Bank covers a couple of months of Netlfix and Pelton, for example.
Pro: ATM access and Cash
The Allpoint network provides ample coverage for ATM access across the world. Unlike most fintechs, you can also use it as a deposit account, thanks to its partnership with Green Dot.
Pro: Earn Cash Back on Debit card purchases
You can earn up to 5% cashback when paying for purchases using the Oxygen debit card.
Con: Annual Fees are High
Even though you don’t have to pay a monthly fee, there are other fees with an Oxygen account.
The annual fee is especially high and surprising. There is also no way to avoid paying the fee your first year.
Con: No Access to Physical Branches
Using the Oxygen app, you can get most of your day-to-day needs are met. But you won’t have a physical location with representatives available.
Con: Capped Savings Rates
The savings rate on the Fire account is currently at 3% as of 3/27/2022. This is exceptionally high.
But you’re earnings cap out at $20,000. Hence, there is no incentive to keep more than that with Oxygen Bank.
Con: Out of Network ATM fees
If you use an ATM that’s not part of its network, you’ll receive a $3 fee from Oxygen. This is in addition to any fees the ATM provider charges.
And, unlike other banking apps such as Mercury Bank, Oxygen Bank’s fee increases if you use an international AMT. There’s a $5 charge plus a 1% international transaction fee that’s charged by the ATM provider.
You do get a refund on the first international cash withdrawal for every calendar month. The international transaction fee still applies.
Con: Can’t have Multiple Users
Your Oxygen business account only allows you to have one single authorized user. That might not be enough for larger businesses.
Other business accounts offer the flexibility of adding multiple account users, customizable access, and the ability to order business debit cards for other owners/employees.
FAQ: Oxygen Bank Review
Does Oxygen Bank charge account fees?
The banking fees that Oxygen Bank charges aren’t a ton. There are no monthly or overdraft fees. ACH bank transfer fees are nonexistent.
But the fees they do charge are high. The annual fee on its higher-tier accounts is surprising. You’ll also want to watch for those out-of-network ATM fees.
Does Oxygen Bank have customer service?
You can email Oxygen’s support team at email@example.com. They also list a phone number, 866-287-7021, but no hours of service.
The mailing address is 1700 Van Ness Ave., #1182, San Francisco, CA 94109.
The app also has a chat feature that can get you in touch with support.
How do the Oxygen Bank features measure up?
An Oxygen business account offers some nice perks like the ability to leverage its LLC services to start your business.
With your deposit account, you can earn cashback rewards of up to 5%. That is a good reason to swipe your card to pay for small business costs.
How is the Oxygen Bank mobile app?
The only way to use the financial products offered by Oxygen is through its app. Therefore the company has done a great job of ensuring that its app is user-friendly.
Users seem to agree as well. For example, there are over 19,000 user reviews on iOS, with an average rating of 4.9.
Bottom line: Oxygen Bank
Since Oxygen is an online-only bank, you need to be ok with not having access to physical locations and managing your account digitally. Certain small business owners could benefit from opening up an account. This includes tho who don’t need multiple authorized users on their account, deposit less than $10,000 monthly, and want a free business checking account that has no minimum requirements.