Nationwide student accounts review
We look into the pros and cons of opening a student account with Nationwide.
Find out more here about Nationwide’s student bank account options, including how to apply for an account, the benefits of choosing Nationwide and things to look out for.
Types of current accounts for students
Nationwide has just one current account available for students – The FlexStudent Current Account. But it’s available in two forms – with or without the interest-free overdraft. If you want the 0% overdraft there’s a regular funding requirement.
Below, we’ll review all of the key details and benefits of this account.
Compare Nationwide’s student bank accounts
We update our data regularly, but information can change between updates. Confirm details with the provider you're interested in before making a decision.
To be eligible for a Nationwide FlexStudent Current Account, you will need to:
You’ll need to have received an unconditional offer from your institution before you apply for your account.
How to open an account
You can apply for an account online or in-branch.
Student account applications are only accepted up to five months before or two months after your course start date (unless you have already been a Nationwide member for at least 12 months, in which case you can apply up to 18 months before your course start date).
During the application process, you’ll supply a few basic personal details, financial details and information about the course you’re studying.
- Large interest-free arranged overdraft. You’ll be given an arranged overdraft of £1,000 when you open the account. You can apply for an increase to £2,000 in your second year and £3,000 in your third year. This overdraft remains interest-free for three years after you graduate, although your limit will drop down to £2,500 after one year, £1,750 after two years, and £1,000 after three years.
- Interest-free unarranged overdraft. If you go over your arranged overdraft limit, you still won’t be charged interest. However, you won’t be to spend any more money until you’re back under your arranged limit.
- No overseas card fees. You won’t be charged any fees when using your debit card to make purchases or withdraw money overseas.
Pros and cons
- A large 0% interest overdraft throughout your studies and for three years after you graduate.
- A 0% interest unarranged overdraft (the only UK student account that offers this).
- No overseas card fees.
- No perks or freebies for signing up.
- Only available if you’re studying for two years or more.
Frequently asked questions about the FlexStudent (funded) account
Do I have to get my student loan paid into this Nationwide account?
No, however the funding requirements of the account are min. £500 per term. See how that compares in our comparison of student accounts.
How much does it cost to use the Nationwide student debit card overseas?
When you use your card overseas, you'll pay a non-sterling charge of 0% (in other words the currency conversion is at standard Visa rates). For, example, if you spend the local equivalent of £250, you'll be charged £0.00.
Because it's a Visa, you'll find it's accepted pretty much anywhere that takes card payments.
Compare options for keeping costs down when spending abroad.
How much does it cost to withdraw cash overseas using the Nationwide student debit card?
You'll pay a currency conversion fee of 0%. For, example, if you take out the equivalent of £150, you'll be charged £0.00. Withdraw 250 euros (that's around £211.47) at an ATM in Paris and it'll cost you £0.00. Don't forget that the local cash machine provider may charge its own fee too.
Does Nationwide's interest-free student overdraft limit increase over time?
Yes. While the opening interest-free overdraft limit is capped at £1,000, this increases to a maximum of £3,000 in year six (£3,000 in year three). Check out our full comparison of student accounts to see the interest-free overdrafts available to UK students with a breakdown of each account's limit in each year of your course.
An interest-free overdraft is one of the most beneficial aspects of a student account, and few accounts can compete with Nationwide on this front. Not only does this account offer a large overdraft, but it will remain interest-free for three years after you graduate – even if you go over your arranged limit.
So even though there are no freebies offered with this account, it’s still likely to be judged as one of the most useful student accounts currently available.
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