BoS - RBoS - HSBC

Hi

I'm looking to open a free basic bank account for my wages to be paid into, to pay general expenses, and easily transfer money to my kids. 

Barclays have declined my application (no idea why!) but I am now torn between Bank of Scotland, Royal Bank of Scotland, and HSBC. 

I travel throughout the United Kingdom for work, but don't know if BOS or RBoS have branches in England and Wales. 

Looking for any pointers and advice for which of these three banks to choose from. Looking for an app that's easy and offers realtime deposit notifications, doesn't require that horrid little gadget to authorise new payees/payments, and just a good polite and efficient service.

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  • wmb194
    wmb194 Posts: 3,105
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    edited 4 January at 10:43AM
    jobbie123 said:
    Hi

    I'm looking to open a free basic bank account for my wages to be paid into, to pay general expenses, and easily transfer money to my kids. 

    Barclays have declined my application (no idea why!) but I am now torn between Bank of Scotland, Royal Bank of Scotland, and HSBC. 

    I travel throughout the United Kingdom for work, but don't know if BOS or RBoS have branches in England and Wales. 

    Looking for any pointers and advice for which of these three banks to choose from. Looking for an app that's easy and offers realtime deposit notifications, doesn't require that horrid little gadget to authorise new payees/payments, and just a good polite and efficient service.
    You won’t have any issues; BoS is Halifax and RBS is NatWest. 

    If you want the least hassle app then go with BoS/Halifax (Lloyds also uses the same system as it’s part of the same banking group). It just uses calls to a number to verify transactions. Deposit notifications are usually realtime but there can be delays.
  • Mark_d
    Mark_d Posts: 269
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    HSBC have far more branches in E&W than BOS or RBS.  I don't think you need the gadget if you're dealing with them on phone or in branch.
  • I'd agree with Lloyds group for general ease of use, however, if your children are <11 then Natwest is also a decent option - you can open a free Rooster Money account for them and top-up / have visibility of their balances in your own app
  • Barkin
    Barkin Posts: 375
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    jobbie123 said:

    I travel throughout the United Kingdom for work, but don't know if BOS or RBoS have branches in England and Wales. 
    How important is branch availability?

    I last used a branch approx. 18 months ago. That was to make a large payment - too big to do with the app. Ordinarily I'd have just done multiple smaller payments, but I just happened to be going past a branch that day, so...

    Apart from that, I really can't remember when I last needed to use a bank branch. 
  • Zanderman
    Zanderman Posts: 4,617
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    jobbie123 said:
    ...

    I travel throughout the United Kingdom for work, but don't know if BOS or RBoS have branches in England and Wales. 

    Looking for any pointers and advice for which of these three banks to choose from. Looking for an app that's easy and offers realtime deposit notifications, doesn't require that horrid little gadget to authorise new payees/payments, and just a good polite and efficient service.
    Branch availability does seem to be an odd requirement, most online banks will do what you require without any branch visits.

    If you really want all those features (realtime notifications etc) the best options might be to forget branches entirely - and forget those three banks you mention - and go for Starling. Monzo, Chase or similar.

    They definitely don't have (and never have had!) horrid little gadgets, they just need your smart phone. I assume you intend to use that anyway as you want an app.  So why not simply use an app-based bank?

  • WillPS
    WillPS Posts: 3,039
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    wmb194 said:
    jobbie123 said:
    Hi

    I'm looking to open a free basic bank account for my wages to be paid into, to pay general expenses, and easily transfer money to my kids. 

    Barclays have declined my application (no idea why!) but I am now torn between Bank of Scotland, Royal Bank of Scotland, and HSBC. 

    I travel throughout the United Kingdom for work, but don't know if BOS or RBoS have branches in England and Wales. 

    Looking for any pointers and advice for which of these three banks to choose from. Looking for an app that's easy and offers realtime deposit notifications, doesn't require that horrid little gadget to authorise new payees/payments, and just a good polite and efficient service.
    You won’t have any issues; BoS is Halifax and RBS is NatWest.

    This is correct, and you can service your BOS account at Halifax branches and your RBS accounts at Natwest - however in the case of BOS be aware that you can't use the automated pay in machines at Halifax with a BOS debit card. You are told to join the counter queue and invited to open a Halifax account additionally for the same purpose (in my case I already have 4, just I happened to only have my BOS debit card with me on that particular day).
  • wmb194
    wmb194 Posts: 3,105
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    edited 4 January at 12:36PM
    WillPS said:
    wmb194 said:
    jobbie123 said:
    Hi

    I'm looking to open a free basic bank account for my wages to be paid into, to pay general expenses, and easily transfer money to my kids. 

    Barclays have declined my application (no idea why!) but I am now torn between Bank of Scotland, Royal Bank of Scotland, and HSBC. 

    I travel throughout the United Kingdom for work, but don't know if BOS or RBoS have branches in England and Wales. 

    Looking for any pointers and advice for which of these three banks to choose from. Looking for an app that's easy and offers realtime deposit notifications, doesn't require that horrid little gadget to authorise new payees/payments, and just a good polite and efficient service.
    You won’t have any issues; BoS is Halifax and RBS is NatWest.

    This is correct, and you can service your BOS account at Halifax branches and your RBS accounts at Natwest - however in the case of BOS be aware that you can't use the automated pay in machines at Halifax with a BOS debit card. You are told to join the counter queue and invited to open a Halifax account additionally for the same purpose (in my case I already have 4, just I happened to only have my BOS debit card with me on that particular day).
    Of course the nice thing with opening a Halifax account is that you can also see it in and manage most things via the BoS app and vice versa. So perhaps the answer would be to open Halifax and BoS accounts.
  • eskbanker
    eskbanker Posts: 29,836
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    jobbie123 said:
    I'm looking to open a free basic bank account for my wages to be paid into, to pay general expenses, and easily transfer money to my kids.
    Just to be clear, are you referring to a normal/standard account without many frills, or a basic bank account in the sense of the defined term used to denote restricted accounts for those with credit issues, etc?

    https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/banking/basic-bank-accounts/

    jobbie123 said:
    Barclays have declined my application (no idea why!)
    It may be worth checking your credit files, in case there's something there that may spook other banks too:

    https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/loans/check-free-credit-report/

    jobbie123 said:
    I am now torn between Bank of Scotland, Royal Bank of Scotland, and HSBC. 

    I travel throughout the United Kingdom for work, but don't know if BOS or RBoS have branches in England and Wales. 

    Looking for any pointers and advice for which of these three banks to choose from.
    What's led you to those three in particular, out of all the others?
  • FredTrump
    FredTrump Posts: 314
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    Mark_d said:
    HSBC have far more branches in E&W than BOS or RBS.  I don't think you need the gadget if you're dealing with them on phone or in branch.
    That's simply not true - Halifax is BOS and with RBS (whilst has effectively closed its E&W branch network) you can fully service at sister bank NatWest. With HSBC, there is a grand total of three branches in Scotland.

    There is also a fourth option - Lloyds accounts can be serviced at their branches in E&W plus BOS in Scotland.
  • gt94sss2
    gt94sss2 Posts: 5,605
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    Don't forget that most banks allow you to pay in and withdraw money at Post Offices as well as branches 
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