NatWest - what's the best alternative which also has good customer service?

GustyGardenGalaxy
GustyGardenGalaxy Posts: 746
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edited 8 December 2023 at 5:56PM in Budgeting & bank accounts
I've been with NatWest for many years and rarely need to call them but whenever I have some account related enquiry I've noticed that it's becoming increasingly difficult to talk to somebody.

Even their Trustpilot score is truly lousy.

Had a really bad experience with them today and I've had enough, it's time to move.

Can anyone advise on a suitable alternative for a credit card and basic banking services please?

My credit card (Mastercard) is via NatWest and I have a basic current account ('Select Account'), also an 'Instant Saver' account which I barely use.

I'd like the service to offer telephone and online banking (the latter NOT via an app but via a browser on my PC).

Which services would people here recommend please?
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  • wmb194
    wmb194 Posts: 3,128
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    edited 8 December 2023 at 5:52PM
    I've been with NatWest for many years and rarely need to call them but whenever I have some account related enquiry I've noticed that it's becoming increasingly difficult to talk to somebody.

    Even their Trustpilot score is truly lousy.

    Had a really bad experience with them today and I've had enough, it's time to move.

    Can anyone advise on a suitable alternative for a credit card and basic banking services please?

    My credit card (Mastercard) is via NatWest and I have a basic current account ('Select Account'), also an 'Instant Saver' account which I barely use.

    I'd like the service to offer telephone and online banking (the latter NOT via an app but via a browser on my PC).

    Which services would people here recommend please?
    For financial institutions TrustPilot mostly only attracts complaints so it's not a particularly reliable indicator.

    To your question, First Direct, part of HSBC, is the obvious suggestion. I'm, 'meh' on it but I know people who have banked with it for a long time and love it. It always scores highly in the customer service ratings surveys.

    https://www.statista.com/statistics/386749/uk-leading-banks-by-customer-satisfaction/


  • eskbanker
    eskbanker Posts: 29,938
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    There is also the 'official' bi-annual survey carried out at the instigation of the CMA:

    https://www.ipsos.com/en-uk/personal-banking-service-quality-great-britain-august-2023


  • Thanks for the replies. I think I'll look into the top 3 on that list. :-)

  • @wmb194 - "For financial institutions TrustPilot mostly only attracts complaints so it's not a particularly reliable indicator."

    In some cases I would agree, but when looking at, for example, the top 3 banks in the post after your reply it seems that those mostly have people making positive reviews:






  • lr1277
    lr1277 Posts: 1,630
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    edited 8 December 2023 at 7:29PM
    I am a little confused by your 1st post.

    I thought you needed a basic account but on the basis you have a credit card, you should be able to get a regular account i.e. one with an overdraft. Having said that, one of my current accounts with First Direct (FD) has a 0 overdraft, at my request.
    Regarding FD they don't offer basic accounts. Also you can use either the web or an app. However if using website only, you will need to get a keypad from FD. When I asked for a replacement keypad either 1 year or 2 years ago, they did say it would take a few weeks. I don't know the situation with new appliations.
    If you choose the app option, you can bank on the app, or the app will generate a code so you can access the website.
    Edited to add: I am a big fan of FD because of their great customer service. I now love using the app even though previously I was a website only user. Btw: when setting up the app, the FD staftt member stayed on the line with me whilst I set it up and was thinking of passwords etc. Took about 30 mins including thinking time.
  • eskbanker
    eskbanker Posts: 29,938
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    lr1277 said:
    I am a little confused by your 1st post.

    I thought you needed a basic account but on the basis you have a credit card, you should be able to get a regular account i.e. one with an overdraft.
    NatWest confusingly refer to their Select account (that OP has) as a 'basic' bank account, but it isn't the bottom of the range basic account in the sense you're meaning - that's their Foundation account, which doesn't offer overdrafts (unlike Select).
  • boingy
    boingy Posts: 1,166
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    I'd also suggest First Direct. For telephone banking I think they are hard to beat.
  • beanielou
    beanielou Posts: 89,380
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    First Direct are great. 
    I am a Forum Ambassador and I support the Forum Team on Mortgage Free Wannabe & Local Money Saving Scotland & Disability Money Matters. If you need any help on those boards, do let me know.Please note that Ambassadors are not moderators. Any post you spot in breach of the Forum Rules should be reported via the report button , or by emailing [email protected]. All views are my own & not the official line of Money Saving Expert.

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  • Probably First Direct or Lloyds Bank 
  • jbrassy
    jbrassy Posts: 641
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    First Direct for banking and American Express for credit card. They have the best customer service.
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