Opening a UK Bank Account

Whilst in the UK you will need to have a bank account to ensure that your money is kept safely and so that you can transfer money in and out, write cheques, pay bills by standing order or direct debit, and use a cash card to buy goods or withdraw money from an ATM (Automated Teller Machine).

There are many banks in the UK offering varying products and services, so it is a good idea to spend some time to find the bank that will best serve your needs.

UK law requires banks to make checks on customers opening accounts to prevent fraud. In the case of international students, banks will require proof of identity, usually in the form of a signed passport, together with proof of your address in your home country and your address in the UK.

For international students, it can take up to two or three weeks to open an account if you need to obtain documents. You should ensure that you have enough funds available to cover you for your first two weeks in London in case there is a delay with opening an account. Be prepared to bring travellers cheques, credit or cash cards with you to pay for things during this period. Do not bring a large amount of cash with you. You should also be aware that most banks charge a monthly bank account fee for International Student Accounts.

Although Coventry University London does not recommend any particular bank, below is a list of banks within close proximity to the university.

It is advised that you contact the bank prior to opening an account, as each bank provider may require different documents that prove your student status and residency.

For more information about opening a bank account, please see the British Bankers’ Association Guide.

Bank Name Contact Details
Lloyds Bank 39 Threadneedle St, London EC2R 8AU Tel: 0345 300 0000
HSBC 100 Old Broad Street, London, EC2N 1BG Tel: 0345 740 4404
Halifax 33 Old Broad Street, London, EC2N 1HZ Tel: 020 7506 0402
NatWest 216 Bishopsgate, London, EC2M 4QB Tel: 0345 788 8444
Barclays 29-33 Wormwood St, London EC2M 1RP Tel: 0345 734 5345
Nationwide 1 Threadneedle St, London EC2R 8AL Tel: 0800 554 1025
Metro 117-121 Bishopsgate, London EC2M 7PP Tel: 020 3402 8010

 

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