Tide business account review

Tide bank account aims to give small business owners their time back, by simplifying expenses and invoicing. We look at the features and fees of this business bank account.

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No monthly account fee
Doesn't accept cheque deposits

The Tide business account is designed for SMEs (small and medium sized enterprises), and aims to help businesses manage all their finance admin in the one app. Tide offers 4 different account plans – one of which is free – so you can upgrade your account as your business grows. What’s more, if you’re planning to set up a limited company, it will even register your company for you when you set up your business account. Tide has been featured as one of our best business accounts.

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Name Product Account fee Bank transfers Requires credit check Arranged overdraft Accounting integrations Account management Key benefits Business bottom txt Link
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EXCLUSIVE
Tide Free
Free
£0.20
Free if both accounts are with Tide
Clear Books, FreeAgent, KashFlow, QuickBooks, Reckon One, Sage, Xero
Online & app
Get an £50 voucher when you open a Tide business bank account using the code £50VOUCHER
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OFFER
Tide Plus
£9.99 per month
Free
20 free per month
Clear Books, FreeAgent, KashFlow, QuickBooks, Reckon One, Sage, Xero
Online & app
Get 3 months free with our code, FREEPLAN - Available for a limited time only.
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Tide Pro
£18.99 per month
+ VAT
Free
Clear Books, FreeAgent, KashFlow, QuickBooks, Reckon One, Sage, Xero
Online & app
Get 3 months free with our code, FREEPLAN - Available for a limited time only.
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CASHBACK
Tide Cashback
£49.99 per month
Free
150 free per month
Clear Books, FreeAgent, KashFlow, QuickBooks, Reckon One, Sage, Xero
Online & app
Get 3 months free with our code, FREEPLAN - Available for a limited time only.
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What is Tide?

Tide is a fintech app which offers business accounts to small businesses and freelancers, hoping to relieve them of some of the financial stress that comes with a growing company.

Tide’s business accounts come with a number of features that address some of the most stressful aspects of working for yourself. Tide has been featured as one of our best business bank accounts for small businesses, sole traders and freelancers.

How does the Tide business account work?

Like many other fintech online-only business apps, the majority of Tide’s features are found on your smartphone. The card you’re sent in the post is the only physical aspect of your Tide account.

The Tide app offers a number of resources to help freelancers nurture their businesses and organises them into a series of easily accessible pages.

The app at its core is simple and streamlined, with some more advanced and decorative features present to help exaggerate its convenience. The pages of features include:

  • Accounts: The introductory screen for your Tide app. Here you can see your Tide account plus any other accounts you have linked through Open Banking, along with their balances and transaction records.
  • Easy accounting: Each Tide card has a record of its transactions. File these transactions under a selection of different categories, e.g. travel, insurance, health, food.
  • Invoice: Manage invoices, see a description of the job and its pricing, see which invoices are active or paid and create new invoices. Invoices can be issued in minutes.
  • Pay: You get issued a virtual card immediately upon registration, then you will be posted a physical card with which to make payments.
  • Help: Issue enquiries and requests to the Tide team. This page also displays several questions frequently asked by users.
  • More: Manage your personal and security details and learn about more Tide services including accountancy software, direct debits and customisable invoice templates.

What is Tide Pro?

Tide Pro is an account plan which has a host of features designed to help small businesses grow and scale up.

While it’s not free – it has an £18.99 + VAT monthly fee – it does include a range of features designed for a growing business:

  • Unlimited free transfers. Exclusive to the Tide Pro account plan, saving you 20p each time you make or receive a transfer.
  • Free company cards. You can get 2 free expense cards which include spending limits set by you.
  • Legal advice. Provided by Tide’s partner Irwin Mitchell, you can access a 24/7 legal helpline to help protect your intellectual property and access support for filing trademark applications.
  • Phone support. You can access phone support 9am to 6pm every weekday.

You will also benefit from most of the features found on the free account plan and Tide Plus plan. The main difference is free unlimited transfers, as these are limited on all of Tide’s other account plans.

How can Tide help your business? CEO Oliver Prill answers

Tide CEO Oliver Prill on how the company developed its business account: “The Tide team found that banking itself was not really working well for SMEs, but they also realised that it’s not just banking but all the things around it, like accounting, payroll and invoicing. So they set out on a journey to solve all of that for small businesses.”

Tide fees and limits

One of Tide’s other big selling points is it’s competitive fees. The main charges come in the form of:

  • A 20p charge on all transfers in or out of your Tide account. Tide-to-Tide transfers cost nothing.
  • Post Office cash deposits incur a 0.5% transaction charge (minimum £2.50). PayPoint cash deposits are charged at 3% of the transaction value.
  • UK ATM withdrawals cost £1 each.
  • UK card transactions are free.
  • International card spending has no additional fees and foreign ATM withdrawals cost £1 each.
Tide
Product NameTide
FSCS protected
Account feeFree
UK ATM charge£1
Account software integration
Accounting integrationsClear Books, FreeAgent, KashFlow, QuickBooks, Reckon One, Sage, Xero
Additional cards35 additional cards
Additional card feeFree
Requires credit check
Credit check
Credit check detailsNo - Tide performs an electronic check but no credit check
Key benefitsFree Tide Accounting.
Overdraft
Freeze card from app or online banking
Instant notifications
Interest rate0%
Current account switch guarantee

Compare the fees of popular business bank accounts

Using Tide abroad

Your Tide card has the same fees whether you use it in the UK or abroad – so there are no charges for making purchases, but a £1 fee per ATM withdrawal. This means that any transactions or withdrawals you make while you’re overseas will only be subject to exchange rates, and no additional charges.

Doing business overseas with Tide

Tide
Product NameTide
Overseas transaction chargeMastercard exchange rate applies
Overseas ATM charge£1
International transfer chargeNo international transfers

The company registration service from Tide

Tide also offers a service that allows new customers to register a limited company at the same time as opening a Tide business account. Tide pays the £12 incorporation fee on the customer’s behalf, with the certificate of incorporation arriving from Companies House within a matter of hours.

The streamlined process means both applications can be carried out at the same time, with business owners able to choose their limited company’s name at the time of sign-up. Tide is only able to process applications from single company shareholders, although it notes that you can add additional shareholders and directors to your limited company at a later date by contacting Companies House directly.

If you take advantage of this perk, you’ll also get 6 months of Tide Accounting software for free.

What does the Tide app look like?

Tide app
Tide app
Tide app

Business loans from Tide

Tide has a platform called Cashflow Insights, which you can connect your Tide business account to. The Cashflow Insights tool can help predict your cash flow, offer tips to help you keep your cash flow in good shape and even show you a range of credit products for which you are already eligible.

It will offer you tailored credit options, such as:

  • Business loans
  • Start-up loans
  • Business cash advances
  • Invoice finance

These products are offered by Tide’s financial partners through the Cashflow Insights platform, and you’ll be told how much you need to pay back and when, if you decide to take out one of these credit solutions.

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  • Credit solutions tailored to your business
  • Pre-eligibility checks with no impact on your credit score

Is Tide safe?

Not only do you have to authenticate your account using a password, you also have to authorise all payments through your phone. Tide also requests a selfie every time you log onto a new device to make sure it’s actually you.

Tide’s bank accounts are provided by ClearBank, which means they are covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), which protects deposits of up to £85,000. Tide itself is not a bank, but it is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

Tide customer reviews

In our independent 2024 customer satisfaction survey, 87% of Tide’s users said they’d recommend the brand to a friend. Customers highlighted the bank’s excellent customer service and easy to use online banking. Here’s what some of those Tide customers had to say:

“Tide is really easy to sign up to and connects seamlessly to my accounting software. The app is really intuitive and you regularly receive information about other products and services which may enhance your business.”

“Tide makes me feel like I am a valued customer”

“Great service, easy to setup and very reasonable cost”

On the Apple App Store, Tide scored 4.7 out of 5 based on over 64,800 reviews. On the Google Play Store, the app scored 3.8 out of 5 based on over 16,300 reviews (February 2024).

Tide vs the competitors

Tide FreeMettle by NatWest - Mobile business bank accountBusiness Current Account
NameTide FreeMettle by NatWest - Mobile business bank accountBusiness Current Account
Account feeFreeFreeFree
Bank transfers£0.20
Free if both accounts are with Tide
FreeFree
Overdraft
Up to £50,000 subject to eligibility and application
Overseas card transaction fees£0
Not available in some countries
£0, currency conversion charge of £0
FSCS protected
Accounting integrationsClear Books, FreeAgent, KashFlow, QuickBooks, Reckon One, Sage, XeroFreeAgent, QuickBooks, Xero FreeAgent, QuickBooks, Xero
Account managementOnline & appOnline & appOnline, app & phone

Pros and cons of Tide

Pros

  • Free plan option.
  • Sort your transactions into a number of categories.
  • Connect your Tide account with external accounting technology.
  • Invoice directly from your Tide app.
  • Link your other bank cards to the app to see the balance and a spending record for each one.
  • Can help you set up a limited company.

Cons

  • No international money transfers.
  • Can’t deposit cheques.
  • No overdrafts or business credit cards available.
  • Digital-only banking, so maybe not for you if your prefer face-to-face contact.

Our verdict

Tide is specifically built for small businesses, which means you’ll get a lot of features to help you manage your finances and keep on top of everything even if you don’t have a big accounting team. It’s also easy to use and set up. What’s more, you have the benefit of being able to choose from 4 different pricing plans, depending on what suits your business best. It’s also a pretty great option if you want to set up a limited company, as it’ll register your company for you.

The fees are pretty reasonable, all things considered (especially if you don’t often need to withdraw cash). However, keep in mind that if you use your account a lot and make several transfers and withdrawals a week, you might be better off with one its competittors, such as Mettle or Starling, which don’t charge transaction fees. Also, the downside of Tide’s expertise in business current accounts is that you don’t get any other products such as credit cards or personal current accounts.

Get started by visiting Tide's website and sign up for an account. If you have read this review and decided that Tide’s account is not for you, you can also compare other business bank accounts on the market.

All in all, Tide is a sound option for a small business owners. It’s comparatively cheap, has plenty of useful features, can be used both from the app and from desktop, and it helps you track your spending and manage your business finances, saving you from spending an age studying your account statements.

FAQs

Banking scores

★★★★★ — Excellent
★★★★★ — Good
★★★★★ — Average
★★★★★ — Subpar
★★★★★ — Poor

Finder scores, in blue, are based on our expert analysis. We also show reviews from users, where we've received more than 10, with a score in yellow. We gather more reviews from customers every year in Finder's customer satisfaction survey.

To find out more, read our full methodology.

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. Most of the data in Finder's comparison tables has the source: Moneyfacts Group PLC. In other cases, Finder has sourced data directly from providers.

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8 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    SimonJune 20, 2019

    Can a Tide account be set up with two people having access to the business account

      AvatarFinder
      nikkiangcoJune 21, 2019Finder

      Hi Simon,

      Thanks for getting in touch! Tide account is not available for multiple users but you can Team Cards. It is an app available to iOS users where you’ll be able to order a Tide Mastercard for up to 35 team members per account. Team Cards will be managed through a single app belonging to the main account holder. They’ll be able to fully manage access for the team – freezing and cancelling cards, and sharing and holding PIN codes. And they’ll be able to see who has spent what, straight through the app.

      You can find more information about this when you visit the Tide App.

      Hope this helps!

      Best,
      Nikki

    Default Gravatar
    BarryMarch 1, 2019

    Hi!
    I’m a Sole trader and need an account like Tide for small day-to-day transactions. I also need to be able to transfer to/from my Santander current account and all with low fees and allow iZettle payment receipts. Can you advise, please?

      AvatarFinder
      JoshuaMarch 5, 2019Finder

      Hi Barry,

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

      The Tide app allows you to do money transfers from your account to another bank account and vice versa. For this reason, moving funds to and fro Santander current account could be possible with Tide.

      Regarding, iZettle payment receipts, while Tide mentioned they simplify issuing and recording receipts, I can’t find specific mention of iZettle on their website. Best is to directly ask Tide’s customer support to learn more about the app.

      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
    PaulFebruary 25, 2019

    Does the app allow me to add files such as photos of receipt or paper invoice?

      AvatarFinder
      JoshuaFebruary 27, 2019Finder

      Hi Paul,

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

      Yes, the Tide app allows you to add files like photos of receipts and documents. You can add files by visiting the particular transaction in the app, or by ‘sharing’ a file in your phone storage with Tide.

      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
    SteveDecember 7, 2018

    Is a tide account suitable for receiving credit card payments?

      AvatarFinder
      JoshuaDecember 12, 2018Finder

      Hi Steve,

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

      At the time of this writing, it is not possible to receive credit card payments through your tide account.

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

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

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