11 Best Banks in Pakistan (Roshan Digital, Freelancer…)

Written By Shayan Shamim

HBL is the biggest and the best bank in Pakistan, according to 2022. UBL and Meezan Bank provide optimal banking services to their customers. Several digital banks have also popped up in recent years to cater to the vast online banking sector in the country.

Banking in Pakistan began right after partition with the establishment the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) in 1948. The country’s central bank oversees all commercial and retail banking and provides policies and regulations to all Pakistani banks.

There are various types of banks in Pakistan, such as:

  • Commercial banks
  • Islamic banks
  • Foreign banks
  • Microfinance banks and DFIs
  • Digital banks

According to the SBP, 32 scheduled banks were operating in the country, with more than 15,500 branches in 2022. This article lists the top 11 banks in Pakistan and highlights which are suited for certain purposes.

Best Banks in Pakistan

BankBest For
Habib Bank LimitedSavings
Meezan BankCar Financing and Islamic Banking
United Bank LimitedOnline Banking (Net banking)
Allied BankStudents
Faysal BankFreelancers
Muslim Commercial BankRoshan Digital Account
Standard Chartered PakistanOverseas Pakistani
Askari BankCurrent Account
JS BankHome Loan

In terms of savings, HBL leads the way with a higher rate of return. Freelancers should choose to open a bank account in Faysal Bank as it can be directly linked to Payoneer, one of the most used platforms among freelancers in the country.

With more than 66 million bank accounts in March 2022, Pakistan has a 29% bank account penetration rate which is extremely low.

However, millions of people are opening accounts in various banks across the country every year. With digital banking on the rise, the penetration rate is expected to grow exponentially in the coming years.

The banking sector in the country is still growing, and some issues need to be resolved.

However, below is a list of some of the best banks in Pakistan based on their performance and provided services.

1. Habib Bank Limited HBL (Best for Savings)

Habib Bank Limited, or HBL, won the “Best Bank Award 2022” last year for all the right reasons.

Founded in 1939 by the Habib Family, the bank is the largest in Pakistan in terms of branches and the largest independent company based on total assets.

The bank has one of the highest interest rates on savings in the country at around 16% per annum, making it an excellent choice for individuals seeking profit on their deposits.

HBL has more than 1,700 branches in over 25 countries. The bank offers the following services to its clients:

  • Personal Banking
  • Digital banking
  • Business Banking
  • Debit and credit cards
  • Personal loans and car loans
  • Remittance
  • Bancassurance
  • Foreign Currency (FCY) accounts
  • Islamic banking

2. Meezan Bank (Best for Car Financing and Islamic Banking)

Meezan Bank commenced its operations in 2002 as the first Islamic bank in Pakistan.

It is one of the biggest banks in the country, with more than 850 branches.

The bank has continuously been regarded as the best Islamic bank in Pakistan by domestic and international sources.

Customers can open current and savings accounts in Meezan bank. The savings accounts are based on a profit and loss sharing basis that allows for a halal method of saving. Some of the other features of the bank are:

  • Car Ijarah (car financing)
  • Term deposits
  • Foreign Currency (FCY) accounts
  • Debit and credit cards
  • Corporate banking
  • Investment banking
  • SME banking
  • Agricultural finance

3. United Bank Limited (Best for Online Banking)

Founded in 1958, United Bank Limited, or UBL, is one of the oldest commercial banks in Pakistan.

The bank has over 1,400 branches throughout the country and 19 overseas branches. It also boasts a huge customer base of 4 million, one of the largest in Pakistan.

As of 2021, United Bank Limited had $11 billion in assets and $140 million in net income.

The bank is headquartered in Karachi and also offers the UBL Omni account, in which your phone number serves as your bank account number (an alternative to conventional banking for the lower-income class of the country).

The bank’s mobile application has an interactive User Interface (UI) and multiple security measures to provide a better banking experience to the customers. Some of the services provided by UBL include:

  • Term deposits
  • Foreign Currency (FCY) current and savings account
  • UBL Lite
  • Debit and credit cards
  • Bancassurance
  • Home loans
  • Auto Financing
  • Agricultural financing
  • Remittances
  • UBL Urooj account (Women’s financial services)

4. Allied Bank (Best for Students)

Allied Bank was founded in 1942 as Australasia Bank, the fifth-largest bank in Pakistan.

The bank was later renamed to its current name in 1974, and several other banks, such as Sarhad Bank, Pak Bank, and Lahore Commercial Bank, were absorbed into it.

Allied Bank has 1,432 branches across the country and more than $8 billion in assets as of Q3 2022.

The headquarters of the bank is located in Lahore, Pakistan. The bank provides the following services to its customers:

  • Current and savings accounts
  • Term deposits
  • Credit and debit cards
  • Digital banking
  • Consumer Finance
  • Corporate banking
  • Investment banking
  • Foreign exchange services
  • Money market securities
  • Islamic banking
  • NIFT ePay and PayFast payment services

Allied Bank is one of the best banks in Pakistan for students due to its Allied Youth Account catering to the needs of individuals aged 18-35 years. Some of the benefits of this bank account include the following:

  • No Charges on fee transfer to the institution
  • CNIC payments
  • Internet banking
  • Free Vouch 365 application access
  • Free accidental insurance coverage (up to Rs. 500,000)
  • Youth debit card
  • Two free online transactions monthly

5. Faysal Bank (Best for Freelancers)

Faysal Bank started its operations as a public limited company in Pakistan in 1994. It is named after the late Saudi king, Faisal bin Abdulaziz bin Al Saud, and is owned by KSA Holdings.

The bank became one of the few fully-Islamic banks in the country in December 2022 when it shut down all its conventional banking operations.

The Faysal bank has around $4 billion in assets as of 2022. The bank has around 639 branches throughout the country and provides the following services to its customers:

  • Islamic Current and PLS accounts
  • Islamic personal and consumer finance
  • Investment certificates
  • Special accounts for women
  • Noor credit card (the country’s first Islamic credit card)
  • Business Banking
  • Takaful
  • Digital banking
  • Digibank virtual card

The highlight of the bank is the Faysal Islamic Burraq Digital Freelancer Account which can be opened online and is specifically designed for the large freelancing community in Pakistan.

Several banks offer freelancer accounts in the country, but the Faysal Bank digital account stands out due to its integration with Payoneer.

Payoneer is one of the most popular freelance payment wallets in Pakistan. Due to the absence of PayPal in the country, Payoneer has made its place in the hearts of freelancers.

In 2020, Payoneer announced that it had partnered with Faysal Bank to provide instant amount retrieval from Payoneer directly to Faysal Bank accounts.

This allows users to receive payments via the international giant and transfer their earnings straight to their banks, streamlining the process.

The two accounts can be linked via the Faysal Bank Digital app, and users can perform transactions easily once they are linked.

6. Muslim Commercial Bank (Best for Roshan Digital Account)

The Muslim Commercial Bank, or MCB Bank, was incorporated in Pakistan in 1947, soon after partition, to provide banking facilities to the nascent country.

The bank is one of the largest in the country and is majorly owned by the Nishat Group, headed by Mian Muhammad Mansha.

MCB Bank has more than $8.3 billion in assets as of 2021. The bank also has a vast network of 1,600 branches in Pakistan and over 13,800 employees.

In 2015, MCB Bank established an independent subsidiary for Islamic banking called MCB Islamic Bank or MIB.

Some of the services provided by the bank include:

  • Current and savings accounts
  • Women’s financial services
  • Home remittances
  • Debit and credit cards
  • MCB Lite
  • Loans
  • Bancassurance
  • Loyalty and discounts

One of the best features of the bank is the smooth process of the Roshan Digital Account.

The Roshan Digital Account (RDA) is an initiative by the State Bank of Pakistan to aid the process of remittances in Pakistan by providing bank accounts to non-resident Pakistanis for investments in the country.

Some of the features of RDA with MCB Bank are:

  • Current and savings account
  • PKR or other foreign currencies
  • No minimum balance
  • Wholly-digital onboarding
  • Easy process of sending money to customer’s foreign account
  • Investment opportunities in real estate, term deposits, PSX shares

7. Standard Chartered Pakistan (Best for Overseas Pakistanis)

Standard Chartered is the most popular international bank in Pakistan.

The Bank acquired Union Bank in 2006, making it the sixth-largest bank in the country at the time.

As of 2022, Standard Chartered Pakistan employs around 2,200 people and has 40 branches spread over 10 cities.

Standard Chartered has more than $3.5 billion in assets, and its principal office is in Karachi.

The bank is one of Pakistan’s oldest and most respected multinational banks. Some of the services the bank provides include:

  • Digital banking and account opening
  • Sahar women’s account
  • Savings account (APR 15.5% estimated)
  • Islamic banking
  • World debit cards
  • Saadiq credit cards
  • Home Finance
  • Personal Finance
  • Swift finance
  • Insurance
  • Naya Pakistan Certificates (NPCs)

Standard Chartered Pakistan is one of the best banks in Pakistan for overseas Pakistani as the international bank has branches all over the globe, making it easier to send and receive money from anywhere.

The Global Link feature allows easy foreign remittance to a customer’s Standard Chartered account.

8. Askari Bank (Best for Current Account)

Askari Bank is one of the biggest banks in Pakistan. The bank was founded in 1991 and acquired by the Fauji Group in 2013.

The bank is listed on the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) and has more than 560 branches throughout the country.

Askari Bank reported a net revenue of $4.2 billion and an employee count of 7,478 in 2021. The bank offers various services to its customers, including:

  • Personal loans
  • Business Banking
  • Digital banking
  • Credit and debit cards
  • Islamic banking
  • Savings account
  • Car loans

The bank is one of the best for current accounts due to its associated benefits, such as discounts, free checkbooks, free debit cards, and other features.

9. JS Bank (Best for Home Loans)

JS Bank Limited is a commercial bank majorly owned by the JS Group. It was founded in 2007 due to a merger between two large banks – American Empress Bank (Pakistan Operations) and Jahangir Siddiqui Investment Bank.

JS Bank has 281 branches spread across Pakistan, with over $2.6 billion in assets as of 2022.

The bank provides one of the lowest markups on home loans making it an ideal choice for individuals seeking house financing.

Some of the services JS Bank Limited provides to its customers include:

  • Digital banking
  • Corporate banking
  • Credit and debit cards
  • Her account
  • Special Convertible account for non-resident Pakistanis
  • Fixed deposits
  • Freelancers account
  • Agriculture finance
  • Gold finance
  • Home remittance
  • JS Blink

10. Bank Alfalah

Bank Alfalah is one of the largest banks in Pakistan, with over 12,000 employees as of 2021.

The bank was launched in 1992 and commenced operations in 1997. It is owned by the Abu Dhabi United Group and listed on the Pakistan Stock Exchange.

Bank Alfalah had more than $8.2 billion in assets and over 841 branches, including 11 internationally, in 2022. Some of the services it provides to customers include:

  • Retail banking
  • Credit and debit cards
  • Islamic banking
  • Business Banking
  • Car loans
  • Home remittance
  • Naya Pakistan Certificates (NPCs)
  • Alfa banking app
  • Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL)

11. National Bank of Pakistan

The National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) is the largest state-owned bank in the country, headquartered in Karachi.

The bank was founded in 1949, soon after partition, as a subsidiary of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), the central bank.

NBP has the highest assets among all Pakistan commercial banks, crossing $19 billion as of June 2022.

The bank has more than 1,500 branches nationwide, with 19 overseas branches in various countries.

Some of the services NBP provides its customers include:

  • Asaan accounts
  • Savings accounts
  • Agriculture finance
  • SME banking
  • Digital banking
  • Islamic banking
  • Home remittance
  • Debit cards

Digital and Mobile Banks

Easypaisa is one of the first digital banks in Pakistan. The bank has recently received NOC for a digital license from the SBP to become a completely digital bank. JazzCash is also one of the most-used digital wallets in the country based on the number of transactions.

Digital banking revolves around online and internet banking via smart devices.

A full-digital bank has no physical branch; every banking transaction is performed online. Some of the top mobile banks in Pakistan are listed below.


Easypaisa is the oldest digital bank in the country. The bank was founded in 2009 and has grown to become among the five banks to receive a digital banking license from the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).

Users can easily register an account with Easypaisa and perform basic banking transactions under the prescribed limits.


JazzCash is another big player in the digital banking industry of Pakistan.

It was launched in 2012 and has enabled millions of Pakistanis to perform basic money transactions via mobile and application banking.


Sadapay is a new entrant to the scene and is mostly a mobile wallet with limited features.

However, the User Interface and the transaction times are extremely high, making it a great option for basic banking in the country.


Like Sadapay, NayaPay is a relatively new digital wallet in Pakistan.

However, it is also one of the best for international transactions due to the great exchange rates and minimal fees.

I use NayaPay to make international purchases via the Visa debit card, which has never disappointed me.

The Bottom Line

With the several commercial banks operating in Pakistan, it can be challenging to identify the best one suited to your needs.

I believe HBL, with all its might and services, is arguably the best bank in the country. The internet banking services of United Bank Limited have been nothing but excellent in the past few years.

While I have tried my best to discuss all the positive highlights of these banks, there are always instances of negative experiences by individuals.

The Pakistani banking industry has evolved staggeringly. However, much needs to be done to improve the banking sector in the country.

If you found this article useful, check out more written by me about banking in Pakistan:

About the Author

Analyst, Digital Banking in Asia at TopMobileBanks

Shayan Shamim is a finance graduate with expertise in financial modeling and investment banking. He is a fintech enthusiast and is constantly on the lookout for innovations in finance.

He is an avid reader and loves exploring the world. Whenever he is not writing or creating dashboards, he is trying out something stupid in the kitchen.

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