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  • FIRST POST
    • saunderd
    • By saunderd 1st Nov 18, 3:10 PM
    • 2Posts
    • 0Thanks
    saunderd
    Euro Bank Accounts
    • #1
    • 1st Nov 18, 3:10 PM
    Euro Bank Accounts 1st Nov 18 at 3:10 PM
    Hi

    Are there any recommendations out there for Euro Accounts? I bank with First Direct but they no longer offer these.

    A quick Google, I see Barclays offer one (but you also have to have a current account with them), Santander has a 'Gold Account' and HSBC offer something called a 'Currency Account'

    Any ideas/thoughts/input/watch outs please? Thanks
Page 1
    • mopezone
    • By mopezone 1st Nov 18, 3:30 PM
    • 26 Posts
    • 42 Thanks
    mopezone
    • #2
    • 1st Nov 18, 3:30 PM
    Me too!
    • #2
    • 1st Nov 18, 3:30 PM
    Yes, I would appreciate some help on this too!

    Here's the scenario - I am going to be paid a sum of euros from a UK bank euro account - I would like to open an account where I can deposit this in euros rather than have it converted into sterling, and then use that account for foreign spending when I go abroad, rather than have everything I spend converted back to sterling.

    Ideally I would like a euro account with a debit card, so that I can just withdraw euros directly from an ATM when abroad in the eurozone, without incurring any fees or conversion charges.

    Is there anything out there?
    • londoninvestor
    • By londoninvestor 1st Nov 18, 6:20 PM
    • 836 Posts
    • 720 Thanks
    londoninvestor
    • #3
    • 1st Nov 18, 6:20 PM
    • #3
    • 1st Nov 18, 6:20 PM
    Yes, I would appreciate some help on this too!

    Here's the scenario - I am going to be paid a sum of euros from a UK bank euro account - I would like to open an account where I can deposit this in euros rather than have it converted into sterling, and then use that account for foreign spending when I go abroad, rather than have everything I spend converted back to sterling.

    Ideally I would like a euro account with a debit card, so that I can just withdraw euros directly from an ATM when abroad in the eurozone, without incurring any fees or conversion charges.

    Is there anything out there?
    Originally posted by mopezone
    Transferwise Borderless, or Revolut, or Fineco, would all meet your criteria. Note that none of them is FSCS protected. The former two operate by depositing your money in a "ring-fenced" account with a bank (and so you do rely on them doing what they say they will re ring-fencing it) whilst Fineco is protected by the Italian deposit guarantee scheme.

    KBC in Ireland is also an option, but that account has a quarterly fee.
    • londoninvestor
    • By londoninvestor 1st Nov 18, 6:30 PM
    • 836 Posts
    • 720 Thanks
    londoninvestor
    • #4
    • 1st Nov 18, 6:30 PM
    • #4
    • 1st Nov 18, 6:30 PM
    One more possibility: Ulster Bank. I haven't looked in detail, but the Foundation Account might be handy.
    • mopezone
    • By mopezone 1st Nov 18, 6:59 PM
    • 26 Posts
    • 42 Thanks
    mopezone
    • #5
    • 1st Nov 18, 6:59 PM
    • #5
    • 1st Nov 18, 6:59 PM
    Transferwise Borderless, or Revolut, or Fineco, would all meet your criteria. Note that none of them is FSCS protected. The former two operate by depositing your money in a "ring-fenced" account with a bank (and so you do rely on them doing what they say they will re ring-fencing it) whilst Fineco is protected by the Italian deposit guarantee scheme.
    Originally posted by londoninvestor
    Do you think it would be safe putting a five figure sum in a Fineco account? I am sure there is an Italian deposit guarantee scheme, but is it rigorous, and given the state of the Italian economy..........
    • londoninvestor
    • By londoninvestor 1st Nov 18, 7:05 PM
    • 836 Posts
    • 720 Thanks
    londoninvestor
    • #6
    • 1st Nov 18, 7:05 PM
    • #6
    • 1st Nov 18, 7:05 PM
    Do you think it would be safe putting a five figure sum in a Fineco account? I am sure there is an Italian deposit guarantee scheme, but is it rigorous, and given the state of the Italian economy..........
    Originally posted by mopezone
    I don't have a strong feeling either way to be honest.

    The only option I can see that's both protected by the UK FSCS, and has a debit card, is Bank Of Cyprus - that comes with fairly unpleasant fees though.
    • eDicky
    • By eDicky 2nd Nov 18, 2:59 AM
    • 4,330 Posts
    • 2,498 Thanks
    eDicky
    • #7
    • 2nd Nov 18, 2:59 AM
    • #7
    • 2nd Nov 18, 2:59 AM
    Are there any recommendations out there for Euro Accounts? I bank with First Direct but they no longer offer these.

    A quick Google, I see Barclays offer one (but you also have to have a current account with them), Santander has a 'Gold Account' and HSBC offer something called a 'Currency Account'

    Any ideas/thoughts/input/watch outs please? Thanks
    Originally posted by saunderd
    You don't mention your actual purpose, but if it's similar to that of Mopezone then London Investor's advice is valid.

    If it's just for eurozone travel or payments then it's best to keep your money in pounds and use a suitable card that converts without fees when used.

    Avoid foreign currency accounts offered by UK banks, your funds will be trapped with no card or way to transfer out without fees and terrible exchange rates. The KBC Ireland account has no fees, I believe, if you are over a certain age (65?), and the basic account is free. UK address and tax id is accepted.
    Last edited by eDicky; 02-11-2018 at 3:01 AM.
    • mopezone
    • By mopezone 2nd Nov 18, 8:33 AM
    • 26 Posts
    • 42 Thanks
    mopezone
    • #8
    • 2nd Nov 18, 8:33 AM
    • #8
    • 2nd Nov 18, 8:33 AM
    The way I see it though, is that it's not a good idea to keep money in pounds, as I foresee the pound tanking after Brexit!

    The money I will be paid is already in Euros, so I wanted to avoid having to convert it to pounds to receive it, and then to have it converted back into Euros when I spend in the Eurozone - I actually have a Halifax Clarity card which is great with no charges, but it doesn't insulate you against worsening pound/euro exchange rates.

    That Irish account sounds worth investigating though, as I am over 65!
    • colsten
    • By colsten 2nd Nov 18, 9:44 AM
    • 9,937 Posts
    • 9,005 Thanks
    colsten
    • #9
    • 2nd Nov 18, 9:44 AM
    • #9
    • 2nd Nov 18, 9:44 AM
    The KBC Ireland account has no fees, I believe, if you are over a certain age (65?)
    Originally posted by eDicky
    It's over 60 https://www.kbc.ie/our-products/kbc-current-account/current-account/free-day-to-day-banking-for-60

    No FSCS protection, though. Only the Irish equivalent of it. This might be considered sufficient protection but it's an individual decision.
    • saunderd
    • By saunderd 9th Nov 18, 8:37 AM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    saunderd
    You don't mention your actual purpose, but if it's similar to that of Mopezone then London Investor's advice is valid.

    If it's just for eurozone travel or payments then it's best to keep your money in pounds and use a suitable card that converts without fees when used.

    Avoid foreign currency accounts offered by UK banks, your funds will be trapped with no card or way to transfer out without fees and terrible exchange rates. The KBC Ireland account has no fees, I believe, if you are over a certain age (65?), and the basic account is free. UK address and tax id is accepted.
    Originally posted by eDicky
    I have a Spanish current account and no longer wish to keep my money in Spain. I have looked further into Barclays and HSBC - both are pretty useless accounts - no card to use your money and the only way to access it is to transfer in and out via another account (= fees). Santander International and their Gold Account offers a card & so far appears to be the only other option. Having gone into a branch they didn't know anything about it so I will need to investigate further.
    • susanpemberton
    • By susanpemberton 9th Nov 18, 9:52 AM
    • 12 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    susanpemberton
    I second Fineco. I've never had problems with them and have had multiple 4/5 digits sums paid in at various times.

    Susan xxxxxxxx
    • londoninvestor
    • By londoninvestor 9th Nov 18, 6:32 PM
    • 836 Posts
    • 720 Thanks
    londoninvestor
    I have a Spanish current account and no longer wish to keep my money in Spain. I have looked further into Barclays and HSBC - both are pretty useless accounts - no card to use your money and the only way to access it is to transfer in and out via another account (= fees). Santander International and their Gold Account offers a card & so far appears to be the only other option. Having gone into a branch they didn't know anything about it so I will need to investigate further.
    Originally posted by saunderd
    With the Santander Gold account, bear in mind that it's not FSCS protected as it isn't a UK-domiciled account. It's an account with a Jersey or Isle of Man branch of a UK subsidiary of a Spanish overall parent.

    Jersey and IOM have their own compensation schemes, but not as well resourced as the FSCS.

    I don't see it as particularly unsafe myself, but given your desire to get your money out of the Spanish system, worth thinking about.

    As you say, the Barclays account doesn't offer a debit card. But (as mentioned on another thread on this board), it does let you make outward SEPA payments without a fee, as long as you do them online.

    So a potential alternative solution would be to get a Transferwise / Revolut / etc account with a debit card - or indeed a KBC or Ulster Bank or Santander Gold - and transfer smallish amounts from Barclays into that account when you want to spend on the debit card. You could keep most of your money FSCS protected that way.
    • Saabgirl
    • By Saabgirl 9th Jan 19, 7:08 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Saabgirl
    Hi.
    We have a similar issue.
    We are selling a UK based boat in Euros to someone from Polland via a UK based yacht broker who has a Euro account, so they can receive the buyers payment in Euros.
    We wish to keep the money in Euros and add to it for when we buy another boat in Greece.
    We would then like to use the account whilst in Greece for extended periods, but this is a secondary consideration.
    We would like the Euro account to be FCS covered.
    Any advice about the best Euro accounts available.
    We are looking at Barclays and Ulster banks.
    Many Thanks.
    • eDicky
    • By eDicky 10th Jan 19, 10:04 AM
    • 4,330 Posts
    • 2,498 Thanks
    eDicky
    Hi.
    We have a similar issue.
    We are selling a UK based boat in Euros to someone from Polland via a UK based yacht broker who has a Euro account, so they can receive the buyers payment in Euros.
    We wish to keep the money in Euros and add to it for when we buy another boat in Greece.
    We would then like to use the account whilst in Greece for extended periods, but this is a secondary consideration.
    We would like the Euro account to be FCS covered.
    Any advice about the best Euro accounts available.
    We are looking at Barclays and Ulster banks.
    Many Thanks.
    Originally posted by Saabgirl
    It's a similar situation to the original two, as you say, and the solutions given above are more or less the same.

    A euro account with a mainland UK bank that has FSCS protection will have the lack of facilities such as euro debit card, so to have both features you will probably have to combine two types of account.
    • DannyPearce90
    • By DannyPearce90 10th Jan 19, 1:05 PM
    • 63 Posts
    • 19 Thanks
    DannyPearce90
    Look for an online bank instead.
    • edydotmail
    • By edydotmail 10th Jan 19, 1:13 PM
    • 6 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    edydotmail
    You can open an euro account online with HSBC France or Bunq in the Netherlands.
    • bfg_hightower
    • By bfg_hightower 11th Jan 19, 11:58 AM
    • 4 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    bfg_hightower
    Hi All,

    Seems like I maybe should have posted this to this Thread....

    I have a EUR currency account with a well-known high-street branch. I receive regular payments into this account with no option to receive these payments as GBP sterling for a whole host of reasons which I wont go into here.

    I have my primary GB pound sterling spending current account with the same bank which my wife and I use for all of our bills, standing orders etc.

    I was drawn into the account by the fact that I do my regular banking with the same company and their statement that: "There's no monthly fee for the account and no payment fee when sending money to another [same bank] account anywhere in the world" Also when you read the Fee Information document it gives the impression it won't cost you a penny to run the account.... however....

    The EUR:GBP is currently at 0.90 at the time of writing according to certain FEX sites.

    The BEST rate that my bank has EVER given me to transfer my EUR from my currency account to my spending account IN THE SAME BANK is 0.87 just this morning (according to the indicative pre-transaction rate displayed on my online banking screen).

    So say I receive 10,000 EUR per year into my currency account @ 0.90 I should be receiving 9000 pounds on that.

    (I know that no bank will give me open market FEX rates - but bear with me here).

    @0.87 I receive 8700 pounds on that €10,000. or to put it in other words, my bank could make 300 on my EUR.

    Now let's add the fact that i) you don't see the actual FEX rate they use until after the transaction is posted, and ii) 0.87 is the best rate they've ever given me, so the mean rate is a few percent lower. iii) Then let's add the fact that they invert the FEX (e.g. 1.14905000) after the transaction happens on all paperwork records. iv) Now let's add the fact that I pay the same bank for a premium current account a not insubstantial sum of money anyways.

    = I can't help but feel like I am being screwed.

    So dear readers, my questions to you:
    1. Is there a more efficient way to receive and convert regular EUR amounts into GBP?
    2. Is my bank charging me a fair rate?
    • eDicky
    • By eDicky 11th Jan 19, 1:26 PM
    • 4,330 Posts
    • 2,498 Thanks
    eDicky
    = I can't help but feel like I am being screwed.

    So dear readers, my questions to you:
    1. Is there a more efficient way to receive and convert regular EUR amounts into GBP?
    2. Is my bank charging me a fair rate?
    Originally posted by bfg_hightower
    Considering, as you mention, their pretence of no costs being involved and the lack of transparency about exchange rates in advance, I can understand your feeling of being screwed. But HSBC are no different to any other UK bank in imposing ~3% margin on any conversion, including to/from their 'currency' accounts.

    This can be avoided by using the solutions mentioned in this and the other threads, although there is likely to be a charge for sending euros elsewhere from the euro account you now use. The only benefit of such an account is the FSCS protection, otherwise they are best avoided.
    • Shashy
    • By Shashy 11th Jan 19, 2:51 PM
    • 119 Posts
    • 152 Thanks
    Shashy
    Starling are about to launch a EUR account.

    Great App, no overseas transaction/cash withdrawl fees, no account fees.
    • bfg_hightower
    • By bfg_hightower 14th Jan 19, 9:41 AM
    • 4 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    bfg_hightower
    @eDicky much appreciated. I shall begin to look at alternatives.
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