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If you receive a salary, wages or even a benefit, a current account is important to have. There are different kinds of accounts that cater to different needs, but all current accounts are suitable for day-to-day transactions such as paying bills, shopping online, making in-store purchases or mortgage and loan payments.
This guide will take you through the current accounts available in Ireland, the features and fees these accounts come with as well as how to open an account.
A current account is a bank account that you can use for everyday banking transactions and for managing your money. You’ll be able to:
As part of your Irish current account, you’ll receive a debit card that can be used to withdraw money from ATMs or make payments in-store or online. Some banks also offer cheque books with their accounts.
Most traditional banks will allow you to manage your money in three ways:
Several banks also have mobile apps that allow you to take care of all your banking needs from wherever you are, making dealing with finances simple and relatively stress-free.
As well as having the option to open a current account with a bank that has a physical presence in Ireland, you can also consider digital banks.
Current accounts from Irish banks are often relatively similar, but each will have its own features depending on the bank. Some of the features that you might find include:
Banks in Ireland charge fees in one form or another for the main current accounts offered. The typical fees that you can expect to see include:
If you’re looking for the best current account, ask yourself the following questions to compare your options and find the right one for your personal circumstances:
Each bank will have its own switching process however, generally the process is as follows:
Step 1. Decide on the bank you’d like to switch to and make sure the bank is happy for you to open an account with it.
Step 2. Provide your ID and proof of address and request a switching pack.
Step 3. Decide on a switch date. This is the date that switching current accounts will happen. It’s best to pick a date when there are no payments or direct debits due to be paid out of your account.
Step 4. Complete, sign and return the account transfer form and any other forms that you receive in the switching pack.
Step 5. Let your old bank know if it should close your account once all money is transferred over or if you would like to keep it open.
Step 6: Your new bank will issue you with a new direct debit card and your account will be ready to use no later than 10 working days after the switch date.
Switching from one Irish current account to another is processed through the Central Bank’s Switching Code so that all of your direct debits and standing orders are transferred over to your new account and you don’t have extra paperwork or need to worry that payments will be missed.
If you have an overdraft with your existing bank, you’ll either need to ensure that your new bank agrees to this being transferred over or clear the balance before switching.
To open a current account in Ireland you’ll need to first decide on the bank that you wish to join and make an appointment to see somebody in your local branch.
You will need to take with you:
Banks including Bank of Ireland and KBC have an application form that you can fill in from each respective website to save you the hassle of leaving home.
Some banks such as AIB allow you to open an account through an app on your phone without needing to go into a branch or speak to anybody on the phone. AIB requires you to:
After registering your details on the app, you verify your identity through video chat and are sent an address verification code.
If you would prefer to open an account online, check what the eligibility criteria of your chosen bank and which documents you’ll need such as an extra form of photo ID or your PPS number.
If you’re looking for a current account, the good news is you have plenty of options in Ireland. But the best current account suited to a young graduate just starting out their career won’t be the same as the best current account for a CEO. You’ll need to compare the options that most appeal to your situation. There will be different features and benefits to consider along with potential fees for everyday transactions. As well as the current accounts offered by traditional banks, you’ll also find accounts with digital banks that are worth your consideration.
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