banking - current accounts

I've been with the Royal Bank of Scotland for about 20 years, but following recent events I'm thinking of switching. I wasn't affected personally, but from what I've read of it on The Register I'm not sure I'd trust them to organise a piss-up in a brewery.

I've looked at various review sites, but the reviews for banks aren't very helpful. It's just people whining about overdraft charges. Looking at Which, my best bets seem to be First Direct, Smile / Co-Op or Nationwide. Anyone have any opinions on those?

Oh, and if you got charged 50 quid for going 12 pence overdrawn for 3 femtoseconds I don't really want to hear about it image

Comments

  • First Direct. I have NEVER been anything other than totally satisfied with every aspect of their service. It's a joy to call them! They're not automatons, you can have a giggle with them, or if necessary they can be sensitive, understanding and helpful.

    (And no, I have no interest in them other than the fact that I've been an exceptionally satisfied customer for more than 15 years.) image

  • From your post, I get the feeling you want to quit RSB because of their recent IT cockup. So the question is which banks have invested in their networks over the years, and which haven't. No idea how to find that out.

    That said, I've always been with Lloyds and have no issue with them. Their online banking is good so I rarely visit the branches and have to endure sales pitches.

  • Tom I work for a big company and deal with issue's that can include pay roll problems and making sure money get's into people's banks accounts very quirky or recovered when there is a problem. From experiance's I've had work wise I would trust HSBC/first direct and the Coop. The rest to varies degrea's coundn't organise a p*ss up in a brewery.

    Should be noted just in case because I deal with things like that I don't do internet banking purely because I know what can happen when it goes wrong.

  • I'm with Nationwide and they've done nothing in 10years to offend me. Which I suppose is what you need from a bank.

  • +1 for First Direct

    been with them since just after they started up and they have never caused me any problems.  but I rarely have a need to talk to them and when I do, as Jj says, they have a very human face and are good at sorting matters out

    oddly, their parent, HSBC, who we have our business accounts with, are a bunch of arseholes but probably no different to all the other big banks on the business side

  • +1 for First Direct

  • I use Nationwide. Never had an issue with them and they've been very supportive.

    I wouldnt go with Barclays (they caused me so many headaches)

  • The Barclays Bank in Brighton is like a cathedral. It's makes me wonder how much money they are making to have such a huge building.
  • Smile. Very good. Customer service v good. Been with them since they started. Will be with them until a derivative trader brings them crashing down.

    Have heard good things about F Direct from real people, so they are doing something right.

  • Real people eh? beats recommendations from cartoon characters any day!
  • Sussex Runner (NLR) wrote (see)
    Real people eh? beats recommendations from cartoon characters any day!

    No. it is a way of saying that in addition to the recommendations that are on this thread there are people who I know that use FD that are very happy with the service they get.

    You give off a strong impression of someone who only gets to use the english language on the internet.

  • Alybea wrote (see)

    I'm with Nationwide and they've done nothing in 10years to offend me. Which I suppose is what you need from a bank.

    I had months of grief with Nationwide a couple of years ago.  Months of it, over a simple thing like replacing a debit card.

    The major issues were never getting to speak to the same person twice to sort it out, and their refusal to send a new card to my work address, or to a Nationwide branch.  They insisted on sending it by courier to my home, time after time, but of course I was never in as I have a job!

    I switched to Halifax, and I've had no problems with them.  Internet banking is fine, and branches open in London early enough for me to pop in on the way to work if I need to.


     

  • First Direct Defo! Me and the wife are with them and are pretty good. Changed from Halifax and Santander

  • Had hellish difficulties with Lloyds about 15 years ago and so switched to Natwest (who I chose because of a career development loan I needed).  Not had any significant issues with Natwest in the last few years but whilst I was still tied into the loan (and therefore couldn't move my current account under the T&Cs) had real problems, which funnily enough were related to some glitches in their previous IT system.  Although I've always toyed with moving to Co-op as it fits with my lefty, tree-hugging tendencies, they did manage to misplace my sister's money for several days when she switched to them (albeit the best part of 20 years ago), so I'm a bit wary.  Which is a long winded way of saying that I suspect most banks, manned as they are by human beings, have a tendency to c*ck up...

  • "You give a strong impression of someone who only uses the english language on the internet" Impressive use of confusing jargon, slightly masking that you are calling me a foreigner who shouldn't be allowed on here.
  • Thanks for all the replies, very useful.

    I think I'm going to go with Smile rather than First Direct. My parents have had a fair amount of difficulty with HSBC. I also noticed in the news that HSBC (along with Barclays, Lloyds and RBS) have been doing some more mis-selling. Hopefully the Co-Op are less inclinded to screw their customers...

  • I've had a co- op account for over 30 years and have never had a problem - they are reasonably ethical too
  • One thing I would say about smile/co-op in the south is that they dont have a massive branch network. So if there is need for old-fashioned things like bank drafts or deposits then it isnt the best. There are more branches availible now that they have taken over Britannia.

  • Sussex Runner (NLR) wrote (see)
    "You give a strong impression of someone who only uses the english language on the internet" Impressive use of confusing jargon, slightly masking that you are calling me a foreigner who shouldn't be allowed on here.

    Wrong. Try again. I am a foreigner here and am indifferent as to where you should be allowed.

  • How about you calling me a non English speaker who shouldn't be allowed on here. It's really tough to translate all this stuff from Congolese you know?
  • bos1 wrote (see)

    Have heard good things about F Direct from real people, so they are doing something right.

    bos1 wrote (see)
    Sussex Runner (NLR) wrote (see)
    Real people eh? beats recommendations from cartoon characters any day!

    You give off a strong impression of someone who only gets to use the english language on the internet.

     

    Come on Bos, be kind, your original post about "real people" did deserve a very gentle tease image

    People on the internet are real people too.

    Well...in most cases image

  • Ian, I first used the internet before Stevie G first played first team for Liverpool. image.

    I dont think we are using the same rule book for posting on the internet - perhaps mine is out of date.
    My post doesnt 'deserve' anything. It's just a post. Since most if not all of SR's posts are contentless snark I dont think my response is out of place. It is a suggestion that he should spend more time interacting with real people rather than with internet avatars. The fact that he is misreading a post as somehow xenophobic does not suggest that he can actually respond to posts as they 'deserve'.

  • For a man who likes his jargon you are being a bit over critical by taking Stevie G's use of "deserve" far too literally. Get a copy of the new rule book!! Sorry if I am a bit oversensitive about being foreign/non English speaker but if you have heard as many Um Bongo jokes as I have you would be sensitive too.
  • image What is your point?  You take the piss left right and centre you can hardly moan if someone does it to you.

    If you are "foreign" it is certainly not apparent so its a bit disingenuous to suddenly start bleating that you are sensitive to remarks about your use of English.

    And I think the comment  inferred that you don't speak to real people very often, rather than that you don't use English very often.

    Do you want to trade sob stories?  When my sister bought an ice cream at the seaside when we were little the ice cream man gleefully told her that Enoch was going to sort her lot... Um Bongo jokes FFS grow up.

     

  • I don't deserve this
  • Stick it under the matress where the bankers can't get to it.

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