Best banks and bank accounts in the UK 2023

Banks are not born equal. Uncover the best banks in the UK by customer service and the top bank accounts.

Best banks by customer satisfaction Best banks
Compare bank accounts Compare accounts

Which UK bank comes top for customer satisfaction? Which one polls the best for its online and mobile banking service? And which one gives you good perks if you switch? Here’s how to find the right account to make sure you’re getting the best deal for your money.

Best bank in the UK by customer satisfaction in 2023

In 2023, we published our customer satisfaction survey on current accounts in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Here’s the full list of providers we considered and how many of their customers said they would recommend them to a friend. Learn more about the results and the winners.

Overall satisfactionCustomers who’d recommendIssuerReview
★★★★★94%Starling logoStarling’s digital-only current account is quick to open and efficient to manage, and the app is packed with features. Starling’s customers in our survey praised the app’s ease of use and the bank’s great customer service.Visit Starling
★★★★★90%Nationwide logoThe last building society that does banking on a national level, Nationwide offers a good range of current accounts, some of which come with great incentives and perks, from interest paid on your balance to insurance options. Read our review
★★★★★89%Revolut logoRevolut’s multi-currency digital account is good for travelling and for sending money abroad. You can exchange and hold 29 different currencies for free, and also use it as a standard UK current account – although you can’t deposit cash or cheques. Read our review
★★★★★88%Lloyds Bank logoAnother big bank that also got five stars in our survey was Lloyds. It offers current accounts that suit a wide range of needs, has a large branch network and has been investing in its digital banking features too. Read our review
★★★★★86%Monzo logoPopular digital challenger bank Monzo offers app-based current accounts that are packed with features, with customers in our survey highlighting the useful money management and savings tools. Read our review
★★★★★85%Santander logoHigh street bank Santander comes with all the advantages of a big bank and offers a wide range of current accounts. Among its top-selling points is the option of earning cashback on your bills. Read our review
★★★★★82%NatWest logoWith NatWest, you can choose between free current accounts and paid-for rewards accounts. Customers praised its dependable service and easy to use mobile banking app. Read our review
★★★★★81%Barclays logoCurrent accounts by Barclays come recommended by 81% of its customers in our survey. Respondents praised the bank’s helpful customer service, as well as its banking app. Read our review
★★★★★81%Bank of Scotland logoBank of Scotland is a subsidiary of the Lloyds banking group. Its bank branches are mainly in Scotland, although you can live elsewhere in the UK to open an account. Its customers in our survey were mostly pleased with its friendly and helpful customer service. Read our review
★★★★★79%Halifax logoLast year’s winner, Halifax has several current account options, ranging from basic accounts up to reward accounts. Many customers in our survey highlighted its reliability and range of services on offer. Read our review
★★★★★75%Virgin Money logoVirgin Money has been steadily growing its current account range since its launch in 2019. It now has one free and one paid-for current account to choose from, and its customers that we polled were fairly happy with the customer service and banking app. Read our review
★★★★★80%HSBC logoHSBC has three everyday current accounts in its roster, depending on your personal circumstances and income. Many of its customers in our survey were long-standing account holders and were pleased with the customer service. Read our review
★★★★★75%The Co-operative Bank logoThe Co-operative Bank prides itself on its customer-led Ethical Policy, which was a main draw for a lot of customers in our survey. It has one standard current account and a packaged current account. Read our review
★★★★★74%Monese logoAnother digital-only account, Monese, is especially good for frequent travellers or people who often have to work across different countries. Overseas purchases and ATM withdrawals can be free, depending on which plan you’ve signed up to, and you can also set up a euro account for free. Read our review
★★★★★74%Royal Bank of Scotland logoRoyal Bank of Scotland is NatWest’s sister bank. Just like its peer, it offers a selection of current accounts that include cashback at selected retailers. Read our review
★★★★★74%TSB logoThe TSB banking brand returned to the UK high street in 2013. Some customers in our survey rated its good level of customer service, while others highlighted the bank’s recent branch closures. Read our review
★★★★★73%First Direct logoKnown for providing great customer service on the phone 24/7, the UK’s first telephone bank and HSBC sibling First Direct only offers one current account. But it’s a solid banking option that’s recommended by nearly 4 out of 5 customers in our survey. Read our review
★★★★★65%Metro Bank logoOne of the few challenger banks that also has a network of branches, Metro Bank only offers one current account, whose top feature is that it doesn’t charge you for using the card to make purchases or withdraw cash in Europe. Read our review

Customer satisfaction ratings methodology

In December 2022, we ran a customer satisfaction survey on current accounts. 2,944 people answered and told us how happy (or not) they were with their current account provider.

The survey asked respondents how satisfied they were with their current account on a scale from 1 to 5, and also whether they would recommend their banking provider to a friend or not. We turned the results into star ratings and shortlisted the top-performing brands for our awards. Where there was a draw in terms of star ratings, we used the recommendation score (the percentage of customers who said they would recommend the brand to a friend) as a tie-breaker.

Full details of our star ratings for this sector are on the banking ratings methodology page.

Banking ratings

★★★★★ — Excellent

★★★★★ — Good

★★★★★ — Average

★★★★★ — Subpar

★★★★★ — Poor

The customer satisfaction score is based on a survey of 2,944 customers carried out in December 2022.

Learn the details of our methodology and scoring.

Compare the best bank accounts in the UK 2023

Table: sorted by switching bonus
Name Product Ratings Account fees Funding requirement Interest (AER) Arranged overdraft Incentive Representative example Link
Select Account
Finder score
★★★★★
★★★★★
User survey
★★★★★
★★★★★
£0
No minimum funding requirement
0% AER
39.49% EAR variable
Free 24/7 Emergency Cash Service to withdraw up to £300 for online and telephone banking customers or £60 if not.
Current account switch service guarantee badgeRepresentative example: If you use an arranged overdraft of £1,200 you'll be charged interest at 39.49% EAR variable.
Go to site
View details
EXCLUSIVE
Revolut Standard
Finder score
★★★★★
★★★★★
User survey
★★★★★
★★★★★
£0
No minimum funding requirement
0% AER

Get 3 months of Premium for free.
Account fee of £0.
Go to site
View details
OFFER
Monese
Finder score
★★★★★
★★★★★
User survey
★★★★★
★★★★★
£0
No minimum funding requirement
0% AER
N/A
Get a free £10 bonus when using your card to make a transaction for the first time using the promo code FINDER (T&Cs apply).
Go to site
View details
Current Account - Age 18 and over
Finder score
★★★★★
★★★★★
User survey
★★★★★
★★★★★
£0
No minimum funding requirement
0.05% AER
15% EAR variable
No fees overseas.
Current account switch service guarantee badge
No fees for spending or withdrawing cash overseas - currencies are converted at Mastercard’s standard exchange rate
Representative example: If you use an arranged overdraft of £1,200 you'll be charged interest at 15% EAR variable.
Go to site
View details
Bank Account
Finder score
★★★★★
★★★★★
User survey
★★★★★
★★★★★
£0
No minimum funding requirement
0% AER

(Subject to status)
Eligible for Regular Saver product.
Current account switch service guarantee badgeRepresentative example: 0% EAR (variable) on the first £25, 39.9% EAR (variable) on anything above that, giving a representative annual percentage rate (APR) of 38.9% APR (variable). Based on an arranged overdraft of £1,200.
Go to site
View details
loading

Compare up to 4 providers

Bank account jargon explained

AER. Annual equivalent rate. This is a way of showing the interest you would earn in a year on money you deposited into an account, and helps you to compare accounts.
EAR. Equivalent annual rate. This is the interest rate that applies when you borrow money – when you use your arranged overdraft, for example. It shows the interest you would be charged over a year if your account were to remain overdrawn.
Arranged overdraft. If your account goes into the red, the bank will charge you a set EAR. Before you go overdrawn, you need to arrange this facility with your bank.

So, do the highest-rated brands offer the best current accounts available?

Our customer satisfaction table shows the current accounts whose customers are most satisfied with their banking provider.

In our survey, we asked account holders whether they would recommend their provider to a friend and how they would rate it from one to five. So, a good result in the survey does mean that many people think a certain current account provider does a good job. What it does not mean is that the same account provider is good for everyone.

For example, some of the more traditional banks near the top of our table might not suit those who just want a slick app and don’t plan to visit a branch. If that’s you, you might be better off with a fintech challenger brand like Starling Bank or Monzo. It’s all about figuring out your banking style and ultimately choosing the account that’s best for you, not for everyone else.

Which bank account should I choose?

Before you answer this question, you should ask “what do I need from my bank account?”

Work out what you need before comparing the options.

Who are the “big four” banks in the UK?

  • Barclays

    Barclays is a multinational banking and financial services company based in London. It is a universal bank with operations in retail, wholesale and investment banking – as well as wealth management, mortgage lending and credit cards. Barclays has operations in more than 50 countries and around 48 million customers globally.

  • HSBC

    HSBC is another multinational banking and financial services company that is headquartered in London. It is the world’s sixth largest bank by total assets and the largest in Europe and the UK.

  • Lloyds Banking Group

    The Lloyds Banking Group now includes Lloyds Bank, Halifax and Bank of Scotland, as well as other financial brands such as Scottish Widows. Lloyds Bank itself is more than 250 years old, having opened in Birmingham in 1765.

  • NatWest Group

    Formerly known as the Royal Bank of Scotland Group, this company includes NatWest, the Royal Bank of Scotland and Ulster Bank. Together, its various banking brands have branches throughout the UK.

Which is the safest bank account?

Safety is a common concern among banking customers, especially for online banking. If you’re keen to discover which banks offer the best safety precautions, check out our guide to the safest banks.

How to choose the best bank account

Here are the main factors you’ll want to consider when choosing your bank account.

  • Branch access. If you would like assistance from staff in a local branch, you may base your decision on which banks have branches near your home or workplace.
  • Interest rates. It’s worth comparing which banks offer the best interest rates on in-credit balances, and maybe which ones offer the most generous overdrafts.
  • Incentives. A lot of banks offer “packaged” accounts, which come with gadget insurance, travel insurance, breakdown cover and other incentives. However, these also come with a monthly account fee.
  • Customer service. There are plenty of surveys out there that rate the customer service delivered by the best banks.
  • Other financial products. Some banks offer better mortgage/credit card/savings deals to their current account holders, so bear this in mind if you’re looking for other financial products.
  • Switching incentives. Banks from time to time offer switching incentives to close down your old account and switch to a new one. It may be worth browsing the latest switching bonuses on offer which can include rewards of £100 or more.

What are the best banks in the UK?

In 2023, we published our customer satisfaction survey on current accounts in the UK. Here’s a summary of the top 10 providers.
  1. Starling Bank
  2. Nationwide Building Society
  3. Revolut
  4. Lloyds Bank
  5. Monzo
  6. Santander
  7. NatWest
  8. Barclays
  9. Bank of Scotland
  10. Halifax

Best bank in the UK by service quality in 2022

Below we’ve listed the results of the “Personal banking service quality – Great Britain” survey, published in August 2022. Ipsos polled around 1,000 customers of each of the 16 biggest current account providers and asked if they’d recommend their provider to friends and family. The survey took place between July 2021 and June 2022 and was commissioned by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) as part of a regulatory requirement.

RankingBankScore
=1Starling Bank81%
=1Monzo81%
3first direct78%
4Metro Bank72%
5Nationwide68%
=6Halifax64%
=6Barclays64%
8Lloyds Bank61%
9Bank of Scotland60%
=10Santander56%
=10NatWest56%
12HSBC UK54%
13The Co-operative Bank53%
14TSB50%
15Virgin Money49%
16Royal Bank of Scotland46%
RankingBankScore
1Starling Bank85%
2Monzo83%
3Halifax79%
4first direct78%
=5Lloyds77%
=5Bank of Scotland77%
7Barclays76%
=8Metro Bank75%
=8Nationwide75%
10NatWest72%
11Santander71%
=12Royal Bank of Scotland66%
=12HSBC UK66%
=14TSB63%
=14The Co-operative Bank63%
16Virgin Money61%
RankingBankScore
1first direct74%
2Metro Bank70%
3Starling Bank69%
4Monzo64%
5Lloyds Bank62%
=6Nationwide58%
=6Barclays58%
=6Halifax58%
9Bank of Scotland57%
10HSBC UK55%
11Santander54%
=12TSB53%
=12Virgin Money53%
14The Co-operative Bank52%
15NatWest47%
16Royal Bank of Scotland43%
RankingBankScore
1Metro Bank79%
2Nationwide72%
3Halifax69%
4Lloyds Bank68%
5Bank of Scotland67%
6Santander66%
7Barclays64%
=8NatWest59%
=8The Co-operative Bank59%
10HSBC58%
11Virgin Money54%
12TSB53%
13Royal Bank of Scotland51%

Best bank accounts in the UK by account type

Best forBankAccount
Best for low credit scoresNatWestFoundation account
Best for cashbackSantanderSantander 123 Lite
Best for packaged accountsNationwideFlex Plus
Best for switch incentivesHSBCAdvance
Best for studentsSantanderStudent account
Best for kidsgohenryPrepaid card and app
We show offers we can track - that's not every product on the market...yet. Unless we've said otherwise, products are in no particular order. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations of these) aren't ratings, though we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it. This is subject to our terms of use. When you make major financial decisions, consider getting independent financial advice. Always consider your own circumstances when you compare products so you get what's right for you.

Banking news & launches

Current account switches hit a record

Current account switches hit a record

The latest data from the Current Account Switch Service shows record numbers of people are switching bank accounts.

Read more…
Santander introduces new £200 switching deal

Santander introduces new £200 switching deal

Santander has launched a new £200 switching bonus for its Santander Edge, Santander 123, Everyday, Select and Private current accounts.

Read more…
Chase looks to add Nutmeg account linking to its app

Chase looks to add Nutmeg account linking to its app

Chase has redesigned its UK banking app ahead of its integration with robo-investment platform, Nutmeg.

Read more…

More guides on Finder

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder.com provides guides and information on a range of products and services. Because our content is not financial advice, we suggest talking with a professional before you make any decision.

By submitting your comment or question, you agree to our Privacy and Cookies Policy and Terms of Use.

Questions and responses on finder.com are not provided, paid for or otherwise endorsed by any bank or brand. These banks and brands are not responsible for ensuring that comments are answered or accurate.

6 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    AshleyDecember 22, 2018

    Which bank should I switch to for Brexit?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JoshuaDecember 23, 2018Staff

      Hi Ashley,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

      As a comparison website, we are not permitted to provide specific recommendations or personalised advice. However, what I can advise is for you to find a bank that best fits your needs, preference, and budget. On this page, we have provided some guides and tips for you to remember when finding a new bank. Please review them before making a decision.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

    Default Gravatar
    DavidNovember 10, 2018

    I am moving back to UK from USA in late Jauary 2019.
    I am a British Citizen born in UK and wish to open a checking & debit card a/c to have my US & UK pension transferred to. How best to arrange this?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JoshuaNovember 22, 2018Staff

      Hi David,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

      Yes, it is possible that you are able to transfer your money from the US to UK. However, you would need to directly get in touch with your chosen bank to know the exact step on how to do it.

      Moreover, please note that regularly doing a bank to bank money transfer can be costly. You may want to consider other faster and cheaper options here.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

    Default Gravatar
    CustomerMarch 21, 2018

    hello. yea so i want to open a new bank account and i dont know which i should chose i want to save money but again to pay small fees and get some bonus % of my saving money and i want to use my card for shopping online or to take something from like vodafone or to take or to take loan and pay monthly which bank is the best and has good reputation and i will not loose my money> Thank you

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MayMarch 22, 2018Staff

      Hi Customer,

      Thanks for your inquiry.

      Depending on the type of savings account you need, you can compare your options on this page. These savings accounts are offered by reputable banks and let you earn standard and bonus interest rates. Whenever you need to access your account for whatever purpose or reason, you can also withdraw your funds anytime. Please review the details and T&Cs of the accounts first before you consider it’s the right product for you.

      Hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      May

Go to site