Banking in the future

I know there has been a lot of discussion, but I wanted to bring this topic back to attention after this mornings developments. Barclays Bank sent us an e-mail today about changes to the terms and conditions from April 2021. They will, in future, require account holders to be U.K. residents, this includes all savings accounts.

Has anyone found a U.K. bank which allows new accounts to be opened by non-U.K. residents? We have quite an amount in savings accounts in Barclays and my Govt pension is paid into our current account. Our son still lives in the U.K. and we regularly transfer cash/pay bills etc, in the U.K. Not having a U.K. Sterling account will cause us some difficulties.

John Hall, what bank did you end up with? Help!

I (and several others on SF) use Revolut.
It’s also excellent for currency exchanges and in the event of a no deal brexit, they will transfer your account to one of their EU operations.

I can also endorse Revolut but if you want a bricks and mortar bank, HSBC could sort you out. They operate in the UK and France and I have accounts in both jurisdictions. In fact you can manage your UK accounts from the French HSBC online banking site by just linking them. It’s all quite slick, I’ve been very impressed. They should be good if you want an an account in Hong Kong or Shanghai too :slightly_smiling_face:

Still working on it!

Thanks all. Relieved to know there is a solution. HSBC seems like a good move, even the on-line application site can be in English. No deal yet in sight so we will take action in the new year.

I wouldn’t delay… best to get it sorted before 31st December in my view - who knows what lurks thereafter…
Remember that traditional Banks are the worst for exchange rates…

Just what I thought.
Dont believe everything you read.
Started application in early October and still ongoing !
5 weeks in to their complaints procedure now and no end in sight.

Hi John,
What’s the problem? Are they taking non-U.K. applications? I thought I’d found a solution!

They dont know , or won’t tell what the problem is so your guess is as good as mine.
Not possible to talk to the department either.
Told to wait and they will advise by email.
They do, every 2 weeks saying
SORRY, we know this is not what you want to hear but we have not yet resolved your complaint.

We originally used HSBC France when we were still living in the UK as it seemed the easiest way to open a French bank account (my wife had banked with them for a long time). However their coverage in provincial France seems poor, our nearest branch was in Limoges, about three hours north of here, which was a bit of a schlep to pay in a cheque.

I think the most important thing to know about a wholly online bank is one’s degree of protection if something goes wrong. I’m sure many recall the fall-out from the Icelandic bank crash…

I have not had any problems with Barclays to date. I did receive a ‘rounf robin’ about some regulatory changes but no mention of any threat to my checking account status.
I did once use them for a currency transfer for expediency but have since set up an account with ‘Currencies Direct’ and have found them to be very efficient.

I’ve recently had a message from Currencies Direct… a bit of a surprise, as I haven’t used them for about 10 years.

Anyway, they’ve assured me that my “account” with them is still open/valid and that my future needs will be handled by their foreign branch… outside of UK after Brexit… without me needing to worry about anything.

Phew… that’s one positive thing… in these uncertain times.

damian john letstryagain


I have not had any problems with Barclays to date. I did receive a ‘rounf robin’ about some regulatory changes but no mention of any threat to my checking account status.

Please read the ‘round robin’ again. It clearly states in the terms and conditions that the accounts and all savings products are only to be held by U.K. residents after April 2021. We have until then to make alternative arrangements. A bit of a concern.

IIRC the round robin only said “we may” close your account, not that they will :wink:

Yes, HSBC entered the French market by acquiring CCF, a small French Bank. It was still branded CCF when my UK HSBC man put me in touch with them. My French HSBC man confided in me sometime last year that HSBC HQ have put them up for sale as HSBC refocusses on the Far East.

Covid seems to have put things on hold but as you point out Mark, security is all importent, especially when one doesn’t have a few decades to recover from a financial “shock”. I’ve been a bit remiss in following the old eggs in one basket adage, but HSBC France being flogged off will make me revise that.

Transferwise is another good option Damian.

and don’t forget the Affiliate link above under FOREX for torFX which will earn your favourite Anglophone forum some bunny points and help towards funding the site :wink:
EDIT: which has been updated by @James to include Revolut and Transferwise/torFX.


Yes, indeed. I used them last year/this year and found them excellent.

I always stand to be corrected but I believe that it reassured me that my account would not be affected.
Currencies Direct also sent me that circular Stella. In future transactions will be handled via their Spanish office.

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as indeed will be the case with torFX, a sister company to CD.

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