Wed. Jun 26th, 2024

The best student bank accounts in 2024

By Hermione Marszalek Feb 21, 2024
For most students, university is their first experience with managing their finances. Photo: PA WIRE

When choosing the right bank account, it is important to understand what the bank account’s overdraft policy is. An overdraft is when you withdraw more money than is currently in your account. Most student accounts will have 0% interest on the overdraft, meaning that the amount of money that you withdraw will not increase when you pay it back. However, Money Saving Expert recommends that while overdrafts can be useful, students should not consider overdrafts as part of their income. It is essential to remember that it is a loan that must be repaid. Some student accounts also offer freebies when you sign up with them.

Here are the best rated student accounts for 2024, according to Save the Student:

1) Santander Edge student current account:

Provides 0% interest overdrafts of:

·      £1,500 from years one to three

·      £1,800 in year four

·      £2000 in year five

Additionally, when you sign up, Santander offers a free four-year 16-25 Railcard which can get you discounts on many train tickets. This bank account was ranked the highest on Save the Student, with a score of 83%.

You will also be eligible to sign up for Santander Boosts which gives offers, vouchers, cashback and prize draws.  

Although there is not an overdraft option for the Santander Basic Account for international students, it is a great way to build your credit history to be eligible for an overdraft in the future.

2) NatWest student account:

Although you can receive a higher overdraft from NatWest, these are subject to more restrictions and approvals than the Santander account.

It provides 0% interest overdrafts of:

·       £500 in the first term

·      Up to £2,000 from the second term until the end of year two

·       Up to £3,250 in years three+

NatWest also offers a free four year Tastecard which can provide discounts at restaurants.

International students can apply for a NatWest select account with no fee. But it is worth considering that the overdraft with this account will charge interest.

3) HSBC student account

The HSBC student account offers a £1,000 guaranteed 0% overdraft in the first year. However, the amount you receive in later years is contingent upon your credit history, and you will have to request increases.

It provides 0% interest overdrafts of:

·      £1,000 in year one

·      Up to £2,000 in year two

·      Up to £3,000 in years three+

HSBC has a bank account specifically for international students with no overdraft.

4) Nationwide Flex student account:

Nationwide has an identical structure to HSBC, and was ranked highly by students.

It is also important to keep in mind that once you graduate, you will need to switch your account to a graduate account. These usually have an overdraft of 0% for a few years after you graduate so you have the chance to pay back any overdraft you spent while a student. Check out the comprehensive list of graduate bank accounts here.

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