Is your current bank “good on paper” but not-so-great in person? Even though many banking transactions can now be completed online, that personal touch still matters.
Whether you’re looking to secure a loan, deposit a check, or investigate a questionable charge, being able to interact with knowledgeable, genuinely helpful bank associates can make your life easier. It can also help get you on the right track for shoring up your financial future.
So if you live in the greater New York area, where should you go to get the most-personal service possible? Check out the following bank branches, which scored excellent reviews on Yelp.
Note: We based these rankings on recent reviews across various branches within New York City, the Hudson Valley, Long Island, Connecticut, and Northern New Jersey. The banks are listed in no particular order.
Most of the financial services providers below provide checking and savings accounts, credit cards, mortgages, personal loans, commercial loans, and lines of credit.
1. People’s United
People’s United defines itself as a “bank for the middle class.” If you’re a frequent Stop & Shop patron, you’ve probably seen their in-store branches. There are branches in New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. Find out if there’s one near you here.
This bank has a strong focus on giving back to the communities it serves, including making annual donations of $5 million through its Community Foundation.
A returning customer with praise for the Stratford, CT, branch:
—Came back to People's after 25 years or so. The bank seems much better than all those years ago. Friendly service, free business checking and a zillion locations.
The White Plains branch gets kudos for its mortgage service:
—My mom and I are buying a house together. We had many tasks to complete in just a few days in order to get the financing, including obtaining copies of statements and executing numerous wire transfers. The staff at this branch were incredibly kind, helpful, patient, and professional. If only People's United had a branch where we're moving, we would definitely continue the relationship. Thank you.
Here’s one from the Westport, CT, branch for their home refinancing options:
—Dealt with the branch manager for a home equity loan. This isn't my first rodeo in doing refinance with my homes, by far he was the easiest and most trustworthy I have done business with. He went above and beyond and kept me informed every step of the way, a seamless transaction. I have been a customer for over 20 years, keep up the good work!
Citibank is the consumer-facing arm of the global financial services corporation Citigroup. It has deep roots in the greater New York area, as it was originally founded as the City Bank of New York.
Citibank offers convenient, fee-free ATM access at Costco, CVS, and Target, as well as at select Duane Reade and Walgreens stores. Find a branch here.
Two reviewers report super-friendly service at the Scarsdale branch:
—With the bank wars in full bloom it’s good to know that you can walk into almost any Citibank and get multiple greetings from all bank members, and lines always move fast and transactions are done quickly and with a hello and goodbye greeting. This is the reason Citibank is my favorite bank, always organized and clean, from full service to ATMs. Very good branch, it’s that simple.
—The staff could not be better......Everyone is willing to go the extra mile...
The Mamaroneck branch gets high marks for financial know-how:
—Dealing with Ms. Fuller has been very helpful to my business. I appreciate her care and concern. The ability to answer my questions is superb.
3. Flushing Bank
If you’re someone who prefers a smaller, community-based bank, Flushing Bank may be a good option.
This community-based bank has branches in Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, and Nassau County on Long Island. Find one near you.
A patron at the New Hyde Park branch likes the personalized service:
—I have been banking at this location since 1996, the bank tellers are always pleasant and helpful with all your banking needs. The manager is tops. If you have a problem you go to Mr. Balraj, he is most helpful, it's a good bank to do your business!
A visitor to the Oakland Gardens location reports fast help with a complicated debit-card problem:
—Today I received a call from the bank with a full explanation of what had transpired at the retailer locations. I was pleasantly surprised at the quick explanation of what had gone wrong at the retail locations. The bank also assured me that if the problem should continue they would issue me a new card free of charge.
4. TD Bank
TD Bank’s tag line is “America’s most-convenient bank.” It seems that many online reviews agree.
TD claims to have the longest banking hours in the business, making in-person transactions especially convenient. However, it also recognizes that many people prefer to bank online, so if offers additional support through the app or even on Twitter.
There are 1,200 TD branches to choose from, or you can open an account online.
People absolutely rave about the customer service at the East Meadow location.
—This bank is the absolute best!! I came in on a Sunday with a complicated change request and they really took care of me. They were unbelievably patient and smiled the whole time.
—Visited the branch 1/8 and all I can say is that they are a great bank. I was greeted by the manager as well as my teller Donna, she was awesome, so personable and professional. In all my years of customer service I've never had a better experience.
—My favorite location of TD, great staff! Always fast and efficient, many of the same employees stay and they all know me.
The Financial District location also got high marks:
—Nothing bad to say about this TD bank. It was empty when I went in. I needed to check on an old account. I was able to update some information as well as get the help I needed with no issues. I was happy I stopped in impromptu when I did.
5. Valley National Bank
Valley National Bank operates 237 branches in 30 counties in northern and central New Jersey, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, and Long Island. Find one here.
They state that their goal is to “help our customers make smarter, safer and more convenient money management decisions by providing personalized service and customized solutions.” It sounds like they’ve achieved their mission.
The Upper East Side location recently got this review:
—At first, I just needed a bank nearby for quick transactions and a checking account. If I keep $100.00 in my checking account without going under ever, I get free checking (checks are not free). Looking back, not only did I find convenience, I encountered professional, helpful and friendly employees who recognize me and call me by name. There have been a couple of instances where I have been looked out for and the manager had called me to ensure the integrity of my account. I very much appreciate that. No other banking institute has ever done that for me in my 36 years of having a checking account. I don't plan on moving, but if I did, I'd have to take this branch and its employees with me. :) Thank you for your quality of service. I feel appreciated.
Another reviewer showed a little love to the Flatiron location:
—Very nice, friendly, helpful, down-to-earth people work at this branch right off 23rd street and just a few short blocks from Union Square.
And here’s some praise for Midtown West:
—We were attracted to Valley initially from their advertisements & radio ads for the $499 flat fee mortgages. Checking their interest rates and terms, it seemed like a good deal, so we applied. The process wasn't the smoothest and took extra time, but in the end it worked out and we saved a fair amount of money. The closing on the mortgage was the smoothest part and we were done in less than an hour.
6. Chase Bank
As one of the “Big Four” banks, Chase operates more than 5,100 branches and 16,000 ATMs nationwide. However, according to Yelp reviews, the bank hasn’t skimped on personalized service.
Accolades for the Garden City branch:
—Yes, I love my bank! Everyone is so friendly making it that much enjoyable to come to. I never have a problem and if I do they take care of it right away. Chase is hands-down the best bank to come to and have an account with.
Mineola gets high marks for helping a customer who was planning for travel:
—I've been to this branch a few times for things like deposits, withdrawals, opening a credit card and recently to order currency and notify the branch of my international travel. A very nice gentleman at customer service quickly and efficiently took care of placing notifications on my credit card and directing me to the counter where I could order foreign currency. The currency arrived promptly and it was super easy. Each time I go go this branch, it's a pleasure. The staff is professional and quick and the place looks modern and welcoming.
Hempstead gets called out for a super-friendly staff:
—I had a great experience at this branch. As soon as I walked in the door I was greeted with a friendly and sincere hello. Everyone at the branch really cares and is considerate … Everyone here was on-point!
7. Capital One
The bank has 755 branches, including 30 café style locations and 2,000 ATMs. It’s one of the nation’s largest banks, with branches in the Northeast in New York and New Jersey.
East Meadow gets the nod from two customers:
—True professionalism and great customer service. I was looking to change banks and went to this Branch as it's close to my Home and had good reviews. It was fairly busy during lunch hour, however the Branch Manager Christina Flanagan was assisting Cashiers and was attending walk-in clients like myself at the same time. She was very professional and was leading by example. She was knowledgeable and provided best options that suited my needs. I would highly recommend this place for banking!
—This Capital One Bank is NICE !! Polite friendly employees. As soon as it got busy, I think she's a manager, stepped right behind where the tellers are and helped out right away.
The Hoboken branch seems to have quite a fan base:
—I have been to this branch a handful of times, usually during the week, and have always had a good experience. The times I have visited have not been that busy, but I was always treated well and my transactions were dealt with efficiently. I've always encountered pleasant staff here.
—Love Maggie and love Paul. The customer service is beautiful. They take time to create a relationship with their customers. I've been here for the first time and I’ve seen customers walk in and are greeted by their name and also customers talking to bankers about their regular personal life and not just banking. The place is clean and wonderful, they even have IPads to accommodate you with anything online. Best Capital One I've been to thus far.
—Yes, I'm Yelping a bank. Deal with it! Here's the benefits of this branch:
- A PARKING LOT - this is Hoboken, parking is like gold
- Friendly tellers
- Lots of space
- An outdoor ATM
- Its next to a bus stop - ok maybe not really a perk but its true!
8. Ridgewood Savings Bank
Ridgewood operates 35 branches across New York City's five boroughs, on Long Island, and in Westchester.
As a small financial institution, customers get the benefit of extremely personalized service, as evidenced in their reviews.
The Forest Hills branch offers gets an ALL-CAPS accolade for customer service:
—Very pleased with the prompt and courteous service I received last month when I opened my checking and savings accounts. I was assisted by Ms. Marina Tur in opening the two accounts. Everything was explained and I left feeling happy with my decision to use this bank. Ms. Tur even followed up with me to make sure I had received the items that the bank send to me. WOW! A LOST ART IN NYC! REAL CUSTOMER SERVICE!!! My Mom uses the Ridgewood Savings Bank in Hollis. Great banks!
Two longtime Ridgewood branch customers had this to say:
—Ridgewood is a fantastic bank. I have had a mortgage with them since 2011, and have undergone a refinancing during that time. What differentiates Ridgewood from its peers are:
(1) willingness to lend in less-than-ideal situations (e.g., my building is 40%+ owned by the sponsor and it is tough to get a lender to commit);
(2) great customer service; and
(3) favorable rates - Ridgewood was by far the lowest cost financing available.
I refinanced with Ridgewood last year and, particularly given the pre-existing relationship, the process was very smooth. Ridgewood is always willing to look at a potential refinancing scenario or answer any questions I have around taxes, etc. I would highly recommend calling them for any mortgage need.
—I have been banking with Ridgewood since I got my first mortgage in the 1980s. My family moved out to Long Island about 15 years ago and we bank at the branch on Bellmore Ave. I have to say they certainly know the meaning of the words "customer service." Any issues I ever had were taken care quickly and efficiently. The staff are all friendly and helpful especially the two ladies that always help me Victoria and Eileen. Good job, Ridgewood.
Looking for a new bank?
If you’re currently looking for a new bank, you may be eligible for generous new-account or referral incentives. Check with your local branch—in-person or online—to find out about their current offerings.
Note: Some reviews were lightly edited for grammar and clarity.