Banking in 2018

In the last few years we’ve seen an influx in a new type of app-based personal bank that promises heaps of advantages over their old school, high street rivals.  You may have heard of Starling, Monzo or Atom Bank that are becoming increasingly popular as ‘Challenger Banks’ to the traditional banks that have dominated British banking for the last 300 years.  These new banks are quickly showing that they are as secure and reliable as the high street banks but offer better services, lower fees and great little add-ons to help you stay on top of your finances.  These new banks are small, agile and run by younger more innovative leaders, so they can out manoeuvre the big banks in the fast-paced, tech-heavy world we live in.

Tide is another of these challenger banks that have emerged in the past few years, but they cater to small businesses.  Banking is often a major barrier to setting up a company as 9 times out of 10 you have to arrange a meeting, go into a branch, prove your you and then wait another week or 2 to get your account details.  With Tide, you can be up and running in under 5 minutes with just a mobile phone.  Tide currently holds over 30,000 business accounts in the UK and we can see why:

  • Takes 5 minutes to set up;
  • You never need to go into a branch;
  • There are no fees for using the card abroad;
  • Seamless integration with FreeAgent;
  • No monthly or annual fees;
  • User friendly app.

Tide do charge fees but for the freelancers, consultants and contractors that we work with, the fees are usually insignificant.  Card transactions are free, but every other time money comes in or goes out, Tide charge £0.20 (it’s free from/to another Tide account).  They charge £1 for withdrawing cash at an ATM, there is a £1 fee for depositing cash at a post office and a 3% fee for depositing with PayPoint.  Usually this results in small businesses paying less banking fees and if you ask us to set up the account for you, we’ll waive our £20 referral reward and they’ll give you 100 free transactions instead!

There are some drawbacks to Tide to consider before opening an account:

  • Your limited to spending £7,500 in any 24-hr period;
  • You can’t bank cheques;
  • Dealing with cash can be expensive;
  • You can’t call them (but you can email them, and they’ll call you back).