Post Office Time Deposit Scheme

The Post Office Time Deposit Scheme is a Fixed Deposit (FD) program with guaranteed returns offered by India Post. This scheme offers various tenure options ranging from 1 to 5 years, with competitive interest rates.

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What is the Post Office Time Deposit Scheme?

The Post Office Time Deposit Scheme (TD) is a savings account offered by the Indian Post Office. It allows you to invest a lump sum for a fixed tenure (duration) to earn guaranteed returns on your investment. 

Features of Post Office Time Deposit

The following are the key features of Post Office Time Deposit:

  1. Options of Multiple Lock-in Period

    You can choose from lock-in periods of 1, 2, 3, or 5 years. You can extend the term by submitting an application to the post office.

  2. Low Minimum Deposit

    Open an account with a minimum deposit of Rs 1000. Additional deposits in multiples of Rs 1000, with no upper limit. Initial deposits by cash or cheque.

  3. Premature Withdrawal

    No withdrawals allowed within the first 6 months. Withdrawals between 6-12 months earn interest at the savings account rate.

  4. Interest Post Maturity

    No interest accrues post-maturity if the amount is not withdrawn. The account can be renewed at the prevailing rate if the post office has core banking.

  5. Interest Payment

    The interest with the principal is going to be paid either in cheque or cash. Any payment higher than Rs 20,000 will be made with a cheque.

  6. Tax Benefits

    5-year deposits qualify for income tax exemptions up to Rs 1.5 lakh under Section 80C.

Note: Tax benefits are subject to change as per the prevailing laws.

Post Office Time Deposit Interest Rates

  • Post office FD interest rates are updated quarterly by the Government of India. 

  • Interest on these deposits is computed every quarter but paid out annually.

  • The rates are influenced by government securities (G-secs) yields.

  • For 5-year deposits, an additional 0.25% spread over G-sec yields is applied.

  • Shorter-term deposits (1-year, 2-year, and 3-year) do not include this additional spread.

The table below shows the interest rates for Time Deposit in Post Office that applies from January 01, 2024, to March 31, 2024:

Account Term Interest Rate Applicable
01 year 6.9%
02 years 7.0%
03 years 7.1%
05 years 7.5%

Eligibility Criteria for Time Deposit in Post Office

Anyone who is looking forward to opening the account should meet the following criteria:

  • Any citizen of India

  • Joint account with up to three adults.

  • A minor who is 10 years of age and operates it by themselves.

  • A parent or guardian can open a Time Deposit account on behalf of a minor.


  • Non-resident Indians (NRIs) are not eligible to open Post Office Time Deposit accounts.

  • Groups or funds, such as welfare funds, trust funds, regimental funds and institutional account holders also cannot access the post office time deposit scheme.

Documents Required

The following are the important documents that need to be submitted to open the account:

  • Filled application form of Post Office Time Deposit Scheme

  • Passport size photographs

  • Identity Proof: PAN card, Aadhar card or Voter ID

  • Address Proof: PAN card, Ration card, Aadhar card, Voter ID or Driving license

  • Income Proof: Salary slips of the last three months or statement of the bank account of the recent six months

How to Open the Post Office Time Deposit Account?

An individual can open the post office time deposit account at any of the post offices in the country both offline and online. 

  1. Opening the POTD Account Online

    • Visit the official website of India post and sign in to the account using valid credentials.

    • Under the section of ‘General Services’, simply click on the option of ‘Service Request’

    • To request to open the Post Office Time Deposit Account, click on the tab ‘New Request’.

    • Enter all the details correcting while filling the form.

    • Make the initial contribution sum and then click on the tab ‘Submit’ for the form to be submitted successfully.

    • A confirmation message in regards to the same will be shared on the email id registered.

  2. Opening the POTD Account Offline

    • With all the important details, complete the application form

    • While submitting the form attach all the KYC documents and a passport size photograph.

    • The individual should visit the post office where a savings account has been maintained.

    • Submit the application form by making the initial contribution sum of Rs 1000.

Post Office Time Deposit vs. Bank Fixed Deposit

Aspect Post Office Time Deposit (POTD) Bank Fixed Deposit (FD)
Issuer Indian Postal Service Banks
Interest Rates 5.5% - 7.5% (Set by the government) 5.5% - 8.5% (Set by individual banks, can vary)
Interest Payment Frequency Annually Monthly/Quarterly/Annually (varies by bank)
Lock-in Period 1/ 2/ 3/ 5 years 7 days to 10 years (varies by bank)
Minimum Investment Rs. 1000/- (and in multiples thereof) Varies by bank, generally higher than POTD
Tax Benefits Tax benefit on 5-year term deposits under Section 80C (up to Rs. 1.5 lakh) Tax benefits on 5-year tax-saver schemes only
Premature Withdrawal Allowed with penalty after 6 months Allowed with penalty (varies by bank and tenure)
Accessibility Widely accessible through post offices nationwide Available through branches and online banking
Risk Government-backed, considered safe Subject to bank’s financial health
Liquidity Less flexible due to lock-in periods More flexible, with options for premature withdrawal
Documentation Simple documentation (KYC) required KYC and additional documentation may be required
Interest Payouts Can be credited to the savings account or reinvested Options for payout directly to account or reinvestment

Post Office Time Deposit vs. Other Post Office Savings Schemes in 2024

Scheme Interest Rate Min Investment Max Investment Eligibility Tax Implications
Post Office Savings Account 4% p.a. Rs. 500 No limit Individuals, Minors Interest up to Rs. 10,000 exempt from tax
Kisan Vikas Patra Account 7.5% p.a. Rs. 1,000 No limit Individual No TDS on interest
National Savings Certificates (NSC) 7.7% p.a. Rs. 1,000 No limit Individual Tax deduction under Section 80C
National Savings Monthly Income Account 7.4% p.a. payable monthly Rs. 1,000 Ind: Rs. 9L; Joint: Rs. 15L Individual Interest up to Rs. 10,000 exempt from tax
National Savings Recurring Deposit Account 6.70% p.a. Rs. 100/month No limit Individuals including Minors Interest up to Rs. 10,000 exempt from tax
National Savings Time Deposit Account 6.9% – 7.5% p.a. Rs. 1,000 No limit Individual Interest up to Rs. 10,000 exempt from tax
Public Provident Fund Account (PPF) 7.1% p.a. (Compounded annually) Rs. 500 annually Rs. 1,50,000 annually Individual Tax deduction under Section 80C
Senior Citizen Savings Scheme (SCSS) Account 8.2% p.a. (Compounded annually) Rs. 1,000 Rs. 15 lakhs Age 60+ or 50+ with VRS/superannuation Tax deduction under Section 80C
Sukanya Samriddhi Account (SSA) 8.2% p.a. (Compounded annually) Rs. 250 annually Rs. 1,50,000 annually Girl child ≤ 10 years Tax deduction under Section 80C


  • What is the minimum amount required to open the Post Office Time Deposit Account?

    The minimum amount required to open a Post Office Time Deposit Account is Rs. 1,000. You can deposit additional amounts in multiples of Rs. 100.
  • Can I avail any tax benefits in a Post Office Time Deposit Account?

    Yes, there is a tax benefit for the 5-year Post Office Time Deposit scheme. It qualifies for tax deduction under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act.
  • What is a post office time deposit?

    A Post Office Time Deposit (TD) is a savings account offered by India Post. You deposit your money for a fixed tenure (1, 2, 3, or 5 years) and earn interest on it. It is considered a safe investment with a guaranteed return by the government.
  • Can I double my money in 5 years in the post office?

    No, the interest rates offered on Post Office Time Deposits are unlikely to double your money in 5 years. However, they provide a secure way to grow your savings with some guaranteed returns.
  • What is a 5 year post office fixed deposit?

    A 5-year Post Office Fixed Deposit (FD) is a type of Post Office Time Deposit with a maturity period of 5 years. It typically offers a higher interest rate compared to shorter tenures and qualifies for tax benefits under Section 80C.

Past 5 Year annualised returns as on 01-07-2024

^The tax benefits under Section 80C allow a deduction of up to ₹1.5 lakhs from the taxable income per year and 10(10D) tax benefits are for investments made up to ₹2.5 Lakhs/ year for policies bought after 1 Feb 2021. Tax benefits and savings are subject to changes in tax laws.

*All savings are provided by the insurer as per the IRDAI approved insurance plan.

Tax benefit is subject to changes in tax laws. Standard T&C Apply
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^^The information relating to mutual funds presented in this article is for educational purpose only and is not meant for sale. Investment is subject to market risks and the risk is borne by the investor. Please consult your financial advisor before planning your investments.

#The lumpsum benefit is calculated if policyholder invested ₹10000 monthly for 10 years in the fund with a policy term of 20 years. This Point To Point past performance data of last 10 years has been used to illustrate a scenario for the customers benefit. It is assumed that the past 10 years returns would have also been delivered in last 20 years. This is not guaranteed and not in anyway indicative of what the customer may actually get 20 years from now. The investment is subject to market risk and the risk is borne by the policyholder.

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