Tandem Bank review

Get to know one of the new faces in app-based banking.

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Tandem

Tandem Bank is a “challenger bank” looking to make money management easy. Like many of its rivals, Tandem sells itself on being available whenever you need it. Using mobile and banking technology, Tandem acts as a pocket accountant. It will look at your spending and point you in the right direction to improve your finances.

Read on to find out all you need to know about the app that’s disrupting traditional banking.

Looking for Tandem’s credit card? Read our review

What is Tandem Bank?

When setting out to create Tandem, founder Ricky Knox wanted a bank “that actually helped people with their lives rather than hold them back”. He wanted to offer services that improved people’s finances in the long-term.

Tandem defines itself not only by its app-based format, but also by approaching your finances from different directions. It can work as a companion to your accounts, collecting data from them to help you, or offer you more through loans.

As well as bank accounts, Tandem also offers credit card and saving accounts. Customers can choose between a Tandem Cashback Credit Card or a Tandem Journey Credit Card.

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How does Tandem work?

Tandem Bank works from your smartphone, and rather than opening a brand-new bank account, Tandem pairs itself with your existing accounts. It looks through your day-to-day spending, bills and standing orders, using this data to advise you on your spending. It gives you an idea of how you can build your life around the things you enjoy. The app also advises you on where you can find services and suppliers at cheaper prices.

Tandem’s app is as simple as it gets, no graphics, no unnecessary features. There are four tabs:

  • Recent highlights: Tandem highlights transactions it sees as important, updating them on a feed. From here it helps you with your finances.
  • Accounts: You can link multiple accounts to the tandem app, activity on these accounts is all collected on the recent highlights tab. You can also connect a credit account you have opened with Tandem to the app. This feature is compatible with most traditional banks.
  • Contact us: Contact Tandem via instant messenger, email or phone. Open Monday to Friday, working hours.
  • Settings: Control the app’s setup

Tandem also offers credit cards, allowing you to borrow a bit extra at competitive rates. For anyone looking to earn a bit of interest on their money Tandem also offers fixed savings accounts. This option is considered in more detail further down the page.

The full guide to Tandem credit cards

Can I use Tandem abroad?

The Tandem app is a welcome companion on holiday, giving you a rundown of your budget so there are no nasty surprises when you get home. If you qualify and are looking for some extra spending money, Tandem’s credit cards (which they will help you pay back with advice from their app) are made for travelling, having no fees for payments or cash withdrawals while abroad.

Is Tandem safe?

The actual app has several security features. All your details are held behind a password, and no sensitive information is needed to connect your accounts to the app, only your personal ID. Tandem looks at transactions but does not store your money, so there is much less at risk than with other banking apps.

However, if your phone or details are stolen, customer service is there to help and can shut down your account instantly.

Given Tandem is a young bank, you might also have concerns about how safe Tandem is to save money with. What happens if it goes bust?

Well, the money that you hold with Tandem Bank Limited is protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) up to £85,000. It’s worth mentioning, this limit isn’t restricted to one account, but all deposit balances you have with Tandem. So you’re only covered for £85,000 of the total amount of money you have stored away with Tandem.

Tandem Savings Account

Tandem also offers a fixed-saver account, letting you put money away for 1, 2 or 3 years. As it’s fixed you can’t withdraw your money. However the fixed interest rate means you know exactly how much your money will grow.

It certainly offers competitive rates of return for your money too, so it’s worth comparing Tandem’s fixed saver with the options on offer from more traditional banks, as well as other digital banks. Atom, for instance.

As mentioned above, your money will be protected up to £85,000 – were the bank to go under.

Pros and cons of Tandem

Pros

  • Simple app design.
  • Registration takes minutes.
  • Bank accounts paired automatically with personal ID.
  • Record of spending and personalised advice encourages saving.
  • Recommendations for cheaper services and suppliers help you save.
  • Records transactions from multiple accounts.
  • Compatible with many banks.
  • Competitive credit card rates.
  • Credit card made for travellers.
  • Fully licensed by the PRA and FCA.

Cons

  • Credit cards can be a dangerous decision.
  • No current or savings accounts available at this moment.
  • Traditional bank services still very necessary.
  • Weaker security than some of the other apps.
  • App performance can be poor on older phones.

Compare Tandem against its competitors

Updated September 16th, 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

Frequently asked questions

Back to top
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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10 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    FranDecember 5, 2018

    Can I use Tandem just as a saving account, I am interested in their Fixed Saving Account and not be given a credit card which I don’t want or need?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JoshuaDecember 11, 2018Staff

      Hi Fran,

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

      Yes, you can use Tandem’s fixed-saver account without getting their credit card. You can open this account by directly getting in touch with Tandem Bank.

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

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

  2. Default Gravatar
    AlistairNovember 7, 2018

    How up to date is the data that TANDEM credit card uses
    I am awaiting my card and have tried to tie up with barclays bank account
    The sign in data required are the ones in use years ago before the inception of the onetime 8 digit access pin
    They are asking for personal 5 digit pass plus memorable word

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JoshuaNovember 20, 2018Staff

      Hi Alistair,

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

      Tandem Bank has just recently obtained their banking licence in January 2018. Moreover, they have also just launched a new type of credit card product. For this reason, they should have already updated their data. However, in case they didn’t, you may want to directly get in touch with them. They should be able to give you a more personalised answer.

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

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

  3. Default Gravatar
    DROctober 4, 2018

    Is saving with Tandem safe?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      CharisseOctober 5, 2018Staff

      Hi DR E,

      Thanks for reaching out to finder.

      The money that you hold with Tandem Bank Limited is protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) up to £85,000. This limit applies to each individual and to the total of any deposit balances you have (across all account types) with Tandem Bank Limited. Any deposits that you hold which exceed this figure will no longer be covered by the scheme.

      You can read full information about this protection scheme here.

      I hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Charisse

  4. Default Gravatar
    MersadeApril 30, 2018

    Will using Tandem as a companion to my existing current account affect my credit score?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JoshuaMay 3, 2018Staff

      Hi Mesade,

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

      Regarding your question, the answer is no. Tandem won’t directly affect your credit score. Please note that Tandem is an app and not a bank account. It helps you handle your finances. If used right, along with other factors, you might even improve your credit score.

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

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

  5. Default Gravatar
    HazelMarch 29, 2018

    Will this help me improve my disaster credit record

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MayMarch 30, 2018Staff

      Hi Hazel,

      Thanks for your inquiry.

      I’m afraid no. If you like to improve your credit score with a credit card, please check out this guide. You can learn some credit builder credit cards from that page and how it works.

      Cheers,
      May

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