What's in this review?
- What is Tide?
- How does the Tide business account work?
- How can Tide help your business? CEO Oliver Prill answers
- Using Tide abroad
- Tide fees and limits
- Doing business overseas with Tide
- The new company registration service from Tide
- Is Tide safe?
- Tide customer reviews
- Pros and cons of Tide
- Our verdict
- Compare Tide against its competitors
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 and offer all of this for free. Tide has been featured as one of our best business bank accounts for small business, sole traders & 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 your paired accounts are featured, along with their balances, card details and a description of their uses.
- Easy accounting: Each 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.
How can Tide help your business? CEO Oliver Prill answers
Using Tide abroad
Your Tide card has the same fees whether you use it in the UK or abroad. This means that any transactions or withdrawals you make while you’re overseas will only be subject to exchange rates, and no extra charges.
The only international hurdle you will face will come from bank transfers, which as of yet are not possible with the standard Tide account.
Tide fees and limits
One of Tide’s other big selling points is it’s competitive, and at some points non-existent, 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.
- ATM withdrawals also cost £1.
- Post Office deposits come with a fee of £1. PayPoint deposits are charged for 3% of the transaction value.
- Card transactions cost nothing.
- International fees are exactly the same but with the currency exchange rate on top.
|UK ATM charge||£1|
|Account software integration|
|Accounts software integration platforms||Xero, QuickBooks, FreeAgent, ReckonOne, Kashflow, Sage|
|Additional cards||35 additional cards|
|Additional card fee||Free|
|Requires credit check|
|Credit check details||No - Tide performs an electronic check but no credit check|
|Key benefits||Register your limited company for free (usually £12) and open a Tide account in one go: choose 'Register a company' from the Tide homepage menu|
|Freeze card from app or online banking|
|Current account switch guarantee|
Doing business overseas with Tide
|Overseas transaction charge||Free|
|Overseas ATM charge||£1|
|International transfer charge||No international transfers|
The new company registration service from Tide
Tide now 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 in around 3-6 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.
Is Tide safe?
Unlike some of the other fintech current accounts, Tide doesn’t lend, invest or move your money around, meaning its always accessible and always yours. 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 customer reviews
Out of 5, Tide has a rating of 4.7 from more than 21,000 reviews in the App Store, whereas over on Google Play it has a score of 3.6 from around 2,500 reviews.
On consumer review platform Trustpilot, Tide has recorded 3.7 out of 5 stars and a rating of Average, based on more than 5,000 reviews. The quick account opening process and easy-to-use mobile banking app were a hit with the Tide users providing feedback on Trustpilot, although some complained about slow response times when contacting customer support.
Pros and cons of Tide
- Pair your other bank cards to the app and see their balance, details and a spending record for each one.
- Sort your transactions into a number of categories.
- Competitive fees and charges.
- Connect your account with external accounting technology.
- Invoice directly from your Tide app.
- Safe and secure.
- Registered with the FCA and PRA.
- No international money transfers.
- App can be clunky on certain phones.
- Lack of face-to-face contact can turn people away from mobile banking.
- No personal current accounts.
- A traditional bank account is still necessary for many of your financial needs.
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.
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 an account that only charges a fixed monthly fee. 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.
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 current account statement.
Open an account with Tide
- Award-winning, smart, simple business account
- The hassle-free account for your business
- Get your sort code and account number in minutes
Compare Tide against its competitors
Business banking accounts ratings
★★★★★ — Excellent
★★★★★ — Good
★★★★★ — Average
★★★★★ — Subpar
★★★★★ — Poor
Learn the details of our methodology and scoring.
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