There are so many student bank accounts available that it can be hard to know which one to choose, especially when they all offer attractive perks to try and tempt you to bank with them.
However, you need to look closely at all of the options before making up your mind and handing over your cash. What seems like a good deal to your friend might not work as well for you, so your choice should be entirely individual.
Don’t be dazzled by the perks and forget to read the small print. Knowing what you’re signing up for could save you lots of trouble in the future.
Here’s what to look out for when you’re researching student bank accounts.
Your bank needs to work for you, so check out where the branches of your chosen bank are in relation to your university campus. You don’t want to find out the nearest branch is 10 miles away when you desperately need to visit the bank.
Having an interest-free overdraft that increases for every year you study is a pretty attractive perk for most students. However, you need to think in the long term as this money isn’t yours forever. Find out how soon you’ll have to pay it back after graduation and how much interest you’ll be charged before getting into debt.
Speaking of interest charges, you’ll need to find out how much you’ll be charged for things like going over your overdraft limit or using a cash machine abroad. Knowing these additional charges can save some nasty surprises further down the road.
Just like an overdraft, being offered a student credit card can seem like a really good idea. However, keep in mind that you’ll need to pay it back, and the interest rates will be far higher than other forms of borrowing.
Different accounts offer different perks, but you could find yourself with a free NUS Extra or Railcard, which will save you loads of money. You might also be offered cheap travel or contents insurance. Other banks give their student customers preferential savings account interest rates. When it comes to additional perks, it pays to shop around.