Current Accounts

A current account is quite important, being the account that it’s most likely your bills will be paid from and income will be paid into. With a current account you can use your debit card to make purchases, utilise online or phone banking to manage your money, pay cheques into your current account, and you can apply for an overdraft facility.

Here you can read all about the great deals you can get with different current accounts. Switching from your existing current account is no longer as confusing as it once was thanks to new switch service. Here you can take a look at our comparison chart to help you make your decision.

What types of current account are there?

  • High Interest Current Account – earns you a higher interest on your current account balance
  • Managed Current Account – managed by the bank for a small fee, helping you to budget.
  • Student Current Account – cash rewards for joining, and interest free overdrafts
  • Graduate Current Account – offers competitive rates on loans, mortgages, and overdrafts
  • Business Current Account – designed for business transactions, with an overdraft facility and free account transactions
  • Community Current Account – created for charities, clubs, and societies
  • Islamic Current Account – no interest on loans or mortgages, in accordance with Sharia law
  • Children’s Current Account – come paired with a savings account

How to choose the best current account for you

Consider what it is exactly that you want or don’t want from a current account. Some current accounts charge a monthly fee in return for added benefits, whilst some remain free. Keep this in mind before you search and narrow down your options using our current account comparison chart.

Can I open a current account?

Current accounts have specific criteria you must satisfy in order to open an account:

  • You must be aged 16 or over to open a current account, though check with each provider, because sometimes the minimum age can be 18. Some banks allow you to open an account if you are under 18 as long as you do so with your parent or guardian’s help.
  • There may be a minimum monthly payment the bank requires you pay in.
  • You must pass a credit check before the bank will allow you to open a current account. This is because most current accounts come with an overdraft facility and they need to know you are capable of paying off your debts.
  • You must be able to provide a proof of identity, such as a passport or a driving licence, and a proof of address, such as a utility bill dated within the last three months, in order to open a current account. This will be required by all banks and building societies.
  • You can apply for a current account, and an overdraft facility, in person, by post, over the phone, or online; if they reject your application you are entitled to ask why.

Overdraft and Transaction Fees

Current accounts offer varying levels of overdrafts, allowing you to spend more than is in your account, though this qualifies as ‘borrowing’ from the bank. As this can be seen as a form of a loan the bank will charge a pre-arranged interest on any money borrowed from the overdraft. Some banks, however, offer interest free overdrafts. In the case that you overdraw without agreeing upon an overdraft amount with your bank, or that you spend more than is the agreed overdraft amount, you will be charged more than the regular interest. In the case that you became overdrawn without an agreed overdraft amount you will be charged what is known as a transaction fee: this means that for every transaction you make you could be charged a £10-£25 transaction fee, even if the payment is not taken from your account. This includes direct debits and standing orders.