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[_] Banks.

Sam Ross s3d at
Wed Dec 16 11:50:59 GMT 2009

>Message: 9
>Date: Wed, 16 Dec 2009 11:13:54 +0000
>From: Tom Gidden <tom at>

>Barclays has pissed me off for what may be the final time.

Been there, done that. Gave up on Barclays at Uni when they wouldn't give me a £50 overdraft to get home from Plymouth to New Malden at the end of the academic year.
They said I had asked for the money to 'go travelling'...
There is no suitable expletive.

>Anyway.  Desired features:
>1. Internet Banking usable on a Mac.  Non-negotiable.
>2. e-Savings Accounts (or similar).   In addition to my current account, I have a few other accounts that I set up through their internet banking system for free.  I can transfer money between them instantly.  This lets me divide my money between personal and work, savings and my "tax pot".
>3. A clue.
>Any thoughts and recommendations (or horror stories) ?

I'm the hippy, dippy type, so I moved onto the Co-op and as soon as I could, jumped ship to Smile (The Internet Bank from Co-op).
I'd wholeheartedly recommend Smile for:

1) Use on a Mac - Current account, savings account, credit card, all manageable online
2) Ease of money movements between accounts. Money is moved instantly between current and savings accounts
3) Secure online messaging where the staff have (so far) been exceptional at getting back to me within 24 hours (usually much less) with the answer(s) to the questions I've been asking.
4) Really simple account transfer from other banks, as they provide all the templates for sending to your current bank to tell them to (bugger off and) move your money
5) Really great fraud protection contact
6) They only ever communicate with me by email (as requested), so no annoying letters or phone calls (unless they're querying a card transaction)
7) No physical banks of their own, but between Link machines and the Post Office, I've never felt the need to see someone. However, if the Co-op bank in Bristol is still there, you can use them.
8) I've been with Smile for almost as long as they've been running - 10 years
9) They've won awards for their online banking system several times (although they could still do with some work on the interface IMHO)
10) Their credit card is pink (OK, not a recommendation as such, but it's certainly difficult to lose...)

I could go on, but I've probably bored you already.
<shutting up>