Irish Bank Comparison

bank pngA few months ago I had a terrible customer service experience with Bank of Ireland. After that experience I decided it was time to change banks, obviously. In the process of changing banks, I did some research and here is my list in order of Irish Bank Ranking.

5. Bank of Ireland
The only positive I can come up with is they have a lot of locations. Beyond that, it's all downhill. The locations are mostly ATM machines and don't have anyone useful working at them. The customer service is a joke. They make it impossible to simply change an address and once lost a check of mine that I lodged in the machine.

It took me a few clicks on the site before finding the rates. They charge a quarterly because they can fee of £5.00 per quarter. This fee is charged no matter how large of a balance you have even if you keep the account over  €3000. If your account balance drops below that about at any point in the quarter you will also pay point sale fees, lodgment fees, and other fees for different transaction types. The rate table is buried on page 9 of the linked fee scheduled.


4. Ulster Bank
They will allow their clients to update their address over the phone. And they charge a monthly fee of €4 unless you keep €3k in your account each month or are aged 60 or over. Even though the "because we can" fee is higher than BOI, it can be avoided. They don't charge for as many POS (Point of Sale not Piece of Shit) fees as others. Ulster has an odd system for doing mobile transactions where they have a separate card reader that you need use for verification. This can be a total pain in the ass if you are traveling and don't have your card reader with you.

3. AIB 
Compared to BOI they will update your address over the phone upon account verification, offering better service. The quarterly fee is £4.50. lower than both Bank of Ireland and Ulster. They also have various point of sale fees on their schedule of fees. The nice thing about AIB is that all the fees, including the quarterly one can be avoided by keeping a minimum of €2500 in the account at all times . Going below €2500 at any time in a quarter will result in charges being applied for the whole quarter.

2. KBC
 They have a quarterly fee €6.00 and will charge ATM withdrawal and other fees if you don't keep €2,000 in your account each quarter. They seem to heavily promote the use of their mobile service which I like being a modern person. Beyond that I couldn't find much about them, and don't know anyone who uses them to get feedback.

1. Permanent TSB
has a €12 quarterly account maintenance fee  but  if you lodge at least €1500 every month you will not be charged the  fee. The nice thing is that if you need the money like most people do, you can actually withdrawal it again. In fact you could lodge it then withdrawal it the same day and avoid the fee. They also don't have a series of miscellaneous transaction fees. Based on fee schedule and quality of service I experience when talking to them this was my choice of banks. My only real complaint about Permanent TSB is the lack of branch locations. I've been banking with them since November and have been very satisfied with the service and products… So far! 

Note
All banks in Ireland also charge an Annual Government Stamp Duty of €2.50 per card applies for cash machine or Point of Sale transactions, and €5 per card applies where the card is used for both. This is another way the Irish government over taxes it's country.


Honorable Mention
I don't know much about this company but Number26 seems to have  business model around not charging its customers excessively. Keep in mind that the balance is lack of in person location and the way it reads you need to be someone tech savvy. Here is the article on Next Web talking about the bank.