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Finance and money forum

Nationwide disaster

Posted by appro on 7/3/2010 at 18:24

Most UK travellers know that Nationwide is the best bank account for foreign withdrawals. I received a letter today to say NW are changing my cash card to a new 'cash card plus' card. Great new features - but you can't use it abroad! Nooooo! NW wouldn't let me upgrade to the visa debit card. Bummer!

I set off next month on a RTW trip. I need to find an alternative bank account that offers decent rates/low charges on foreign withdrawals. Any ideas?

#1 appro has been a member since 9/5/2009. Posts: 32

Posted by christay2009 on 7/3/2010 at 18:57

Most of the banks absolutely rinse you when you tak out abroad. I bank with Halifax, they charge 2.75% of the transaction plus an additional £1.50

I tried to get a debit card with Nationwide but found their customer service to be terrible.

I ended up taking U.S $ travellers cheques and a small wad of cash.

#2 christay2009 has been a member since 8/2/2009. Location: United Kingdom. Posts: 414
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Posted by stevejames00 on 8/3/2010 at 01:05

oh no I've just sent off for a nationwide account, do you know if this is changing for everyone?

This site compares all the UK bank cards abroad:

http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/travel/cheap-travel-money

#3 stevejames00 has been a member since 29/1/2009. Posts: 53
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Posted by appro on 8/3/2010 at 18:35

Everyone with the cash card account. They're sending out new cards between June & September.

I've seen the comparison, it's all pretty dire.

#4 appro has been a member since 9/5/2009. Posts: 32

Posted by ms1892 on 8/3/2010 at 19:53

I think Santander in the UK offer an account called 'Zero' which offers free international withdrawals. Therea are some conditions attached, i think you need to deposit £1000 or more each month, but it may be a viable solution for some.

#5 ms1892 has been a member since 23/12/2009. Posts: 38

Posted by nips2689 on 8/3/2010 at 20:49

I am going travelling to Asia on April 2nd and i tried to open a nationwide account, to get the flex account, however they are clamping down on people just opening them to travel, my boyfriend got one just in time but i have now gone with hsbc..
Their advance account which is £6 for the first 3 months and £12 after offers free withdrawals abroad..

this was the next best thing i could find in a little amount of time.

#6 nips2689 has been a member since 21/12/2009. Posts: 9

Posted by appro on 8/3/2010 at 20:54

The HSBC account might be a good idea - £12 a month is still a lot cheaper than loads of fees. Ta.

#7 appro has been a member since 9/5/2009. Posts: 32

Posted by appro on 8/3/2010 at 21:11

Looking into the fine print of the HSBC account it seems they have a 'foreign exchange charge' of 2.75% on every withdrawal. Not sure how they can get away with saying it's free!

#8 appro has been a member since 9/5/2009. Posts: 32

Posted by nips2689 on 8/3/2010 at 21:25

yes but they dont apply their own fee aswell like other banks

#9 nips2689 has been a member since 21/12/2009. Posts: 9

Posted by appro on 8/3/2010 at 21:28

The Cumberland Building Society don't charge, but you have to live near one of their branches.

#10 appro has been a member since 9/5/2009. Posts: 32

Posted by ambee124 on 18/6/2010 at 19:52

Although it's too late now you might be interested to know that today I talked to a Nationwide guy and he said around a month ago they had lowered their credential requirements for getting a debit card. I got rejected about three months back and he said I would probably be allowed one- I'm hoping I get it before I go away to take advantage of the no withdrawal fees!

#11 ambee124 has been a member since 27/2/2010. Posts: 8



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