Coconut review September 2019

We take a closer look at the current account aimed at freelancers and the self-employed as well as small business owners.

Last updated:

Coconut

Coconut is a fresh face on the financial technology market, hoping to make money management easer. Unlike many other growing fintech companies, Coconut is not presenting itself as a challenger bank – instead focusing on providing a useful and innovative tool for tracking business finances.

Read on to find out more about Coconut and whether it might be an option for you.

What is Coconut?

Coconut aims to make your business finances easier and through doing so “free you up to do more of the work you love”. It does this by relieving you of some of the stress that comes with your tax returns and expenses – estimating the tax you’ll owe, documenting paid or unpaid invoices and tracking expenses.

Alongside these features Coconut works as a business current account, giving you control over the money you earn through your trade.

An alternative to Coconut

Starling Business Account

Starling Bank: Best Business Banking Provider 2019

  • No monthly fees or fees overseas from Starling Bank
  • Apply in minutes from your mobile
  • Cut down on admin with Xero & FreeAgent integrations
  • Get real-time payment notifications & categorised transactions
  • Flexible overdraft facility with clear, reasonable rates
Promoted

How does Coconut work?

Apart from the card you are sent in the post after you register, Coconut works through an app on your phone.

Rather than relying on bells and whistles, Coconut delivers an app which works to make things as simple as possible for the user. Displaying your earnings front-and-centre, Coconut encourages you to explore the app from there.

Along with the introductory screen Coconut provides a number of features including:

  • Taxes: See your earnings and the estimated amount of tax you will be required to pay at the end of the financial year.
  • Payments: Keep a record of your paid and unpaid invoices and how much they’re worth.
  • Activity: A record of your spending. Not only a way to keep an eye on where your money’s going, but also necessary when tax returns are due
  • Card: Activate and deactivate your card from here.
  • More: Get a rundown of the FAQs, change your tariff and get more out of your Coconut account.

Using Coconut abroad

Coconut specialises in delivering a finance-management tool for freelancers, small businesses directors and the self-employed, and doesn’t spread itself too thin. However, if you’re looking for a card to take abroad, you may opt for the pay-monthly account offering fee-free currency conversion.

Travelling abroad?

If you are heading overseas and are thinking about travel money, head to our travel money section for the cheapest deals on foreign currencies, or to our travel section for tips on how to get cheap flights!

Coconut’s fees and key features

Coconut offers a free or pay-monthly account:

“Start”

  • No monthly fee.
  • Automated bookkeeping.
  • Receipt capture.
  • Fee for cash withdrawals.
  • Tax estimation.
  • Limited number of invoices.
  • Commission charge on non-sterling tranactions.

“Grow”

  • £5 monthly fee.
  • Automated bookkeeping.
  • Receipt capture.
  • Fee for cash withdrawals.
  • Tax estimation.
  • Unlimited invoices.
  • No charge on non-sterling tranactions.

Is Coconut safe?

Security is high on Coconut’s priority list, and Coconut works hard to make itself as safe as possible. Your account is kept behind a two-step authentication process and your password is encrypted using industry standard encryption.

Coconut regularly scans for threats and backs up data to make sure it’s always safe.

Pros and cons of Coconut

Pros

  • Open an account quickly and easily.
  • Card sent to you upon registration.
  • A record of your spending helps you save money. Additionally this feature is a great help when you declare your income at the end of the financial year.
  • The tax page helps calculate how much tax you will owe at the end of the financial year.
  • Safe and secure.
  • Paid account offers many useful features to help your business grow.
  • Registered with the FCA.

Cons

  • Monthly subscription fee for premium facilities.
  • Fee on cash withdrawals.
  • No credit facility.
  • You’ll still need a traditional bank account for most of your financial needs.

Compare Coconut against its competitors

Updated September 20th, 2019
Name Product Fees and charges Delivery speed
Free
Between 3-5 working days
Everything you get from a current account, but with new features for mobile living. (E.g. Goals for saving, spending catgorisation, interest on your balances)
Free with finder.com, otherwise card delivery is £4.99
Up to 9 working days
App-based current account with loads of extra features. (e.g. Real time transactions, payment categorisation, save spare change, free international money transfers, buy cryptocurrency)
N26
Free
5-7 working days
App-based bank account that can be used on the go in any EU country. All about the ease of sending and saving money.
None
Between 3-5 business days
A multi-currency mobile banking app that aims to be ‘built around you’. Use it to open a fully functional current account instantly, straight from your phone, all supported by a feature-rich mobile app

Compare up to 4 providers

Updated September 20th, 2019
Name Product Foreign ATM withdrawals Foreign transactions fee Card cost Delivery speed
Free
No fees
Free
Between 3-5 working days
Everything you get from a current account, but with new features for mobile living. (E.g. Goals for saving, spending catgorisation, interest on your balances)
£200 free monthly
No fees
Free with finder.com, otherwise card delivery is £4.99
Up to 9 working days
App-based current account with loads of extra features. (e.g. Real time transactions, payment categorisation, save spare change, free international money transfers, buy cryptocurrency)
N26
1.7% of amount drawn
No fees
Free
5-7 working days
App-based bank account that can be used on the go in any EU country. All about the ease of sending and saving money.
Withdrawals of £200/$200/€200 or more – free
smaller withdrawals – a charge of £1.50 per withdrawal

No transaction fees (if you spend in one of the 18 wallet currencies)
Free
Between 3-5 working days in the UK, or within 10 days if you live outside the UK

Compare up to 4 providers

Updated September 20th, 2019
Name Product Fees and charges Interest Savings goals
N26
Free
None
n26 'Spaces' feature lets the user open sub-accounts to stash your money away
Free with finder.com, otherwise card delivery is £4.99
No interest
Set budgets in the app
Free
0.5% AER up to £2,000, 0.25% over £2,000 to £85,000
Create different spending goals and protect money from daily spending
None
No interest
Not a feature

Compare up to 4 providers

Updated September 20th, 2019
Name Product Direct debits UK ATM withdrawals Payments Freeze your card
N26
Yes
Free
Use MoneyBeam to transfer money instantly. Is partnered with Transferwise so can send money to 16 countries.
Yes: touch of a button in app
App-based bank account that can be used on the go in any EU country. All about the ease of sending and saving money.
Revolut currently only supports direct debits with the Euro IBAN account
£200 free monthly
Easy UK payments and can transfer money between 23 countries
Yes: touch of a button in app
App-based current account with loads of extra features. (e.g. Real time transactions, payment categorisation, save spare change, free international money transfers, buy cryptocurrency)
Yes - future Direct Debits shown as alerts
Free
Pay via bank transfer or using PayPal or Google Nearby
Yes: touch of a button in app
Everything you get from a current account, but with new features for mobile living. (E.g. Goals for saving, spending catgorisation, interest on your balances)
Yes - can cancel with touch of a button too
£200 free monthly
Pay via bank transfer, easier to send to another Monese account.
Report lost/stolen in app to be sent replacement
A multi-currency mobile banking app that aims to be ‘built around you’. Use it to open a fully functional current account instantly, straight from your phone, all supported by a feature-rich mobile app

Compare up to 4 providers

Frequently asked questions

Starling
Starling

What is it?

Everything you get from a current account, but with new features for mobile living. (E.g. Goals for saving, spending catgorisation, interest on your balances)
N26
N26

What is it?

App-based bank account that can be used on the go in any EU country. All about the ease of sending and saving money.
Revolut (Standard)
Revolut (Standard)

What is it?

App-based current account with loads of extra features. (e.g. Real time transactions, payment categorisation, save spare change, free international money transfers, buy cryptocurrency)
Monese (Starter)
Monese (Starter)

What is it?

A multi-currency mobile banking app that aims to be ‘built around you’. Use it to open a fully functional current account instantly, straight from your phone, all supported by a feature-rich mobile app
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