Compte Nickel

  • Hi Guys,

    I am a new member and this is my first post.
    I plan to move to Nice in the next few weeks and at the moment it will only be a temporary move and I was wondering which the most straight forward bank account would be to open?

    I have seen Compte Nickel accounts which looks straight forward to open but does anyone know if I can make an international transfer back to the UK online with this account?

    If not, can anyone else recommend a good way to transfer money back to the UK?

    Many Thanks in advance
  • Re: Compte Nickel
    I just saw that Compte Nickel have been bought by BNP which made my hackles rise.

    I have no idea how good they are but you can also look at ING.fr for online banking.

    Transferring back to the UK - use a foreign exchange service like transferwise or worldfirst to get the best exchange rates and lowest charges. Within Eurozone, there is SEPA but you will be at the mercy of the bank's exchange rate when converting to sterling.
  • Re: Compte Nickel
    Take a look at the new mobile app based banks like Revolut or N26 - easy to set up on a mobile phone in 5 minutes, have accounts with European sort codes compatible with SEPA, beat all traditional banks with their international exchange rates and are a breeze to use. The only thing is that they don't have cheque books or allow cheques to be paid in, and we know the French are stuck in last century in this regard! We use both accounts in our family and it works well for us. I also have ING.fr as my main bank in France and happy with them and generally easier to deal with than the high street banks, and no charges, though suddenly they feel more French (slow and lots of paperwork) when compared to the others mentioned above.

    Interestingly I just opened another online account with better savings rates and the opening procedure needed a RIB from another French based bank as part of the proof of ID. Seems a bit strange and would cause a problem if you are trying to open your first account in the country.
  • Re: Compte Nickel
    Agree with south_bound's suggestion of Revolut; quick to setup, easy to use, top exchange rates, but subject to the limitations mentioned. N26 hasn't launched yet in the UK.

    KBC Ireland will also provide Euro accounts to non residents, but it takes longer to set up. It seems impossible to obtain a French bank account unless you already have a French residential address, even though EU directives say that they should...
  • Re: Compte Nickel
    FX companies are the best way to transfer money IMHO. I use TransferWise, the fees are low and the exchange rates seem OK, and the last transfer I did from my French account to my UK account took 26 seconds, what's not to like.
  • Re: Compte Nickel
    Quote: FX companies are the best way to transfer money IMHO. I use TransferWise, the fees are low and the exchange rates seem OK, and the last transfer I did from my French account to my UK account took 26 seconds, what's not to like.
    +1
  • Re: Compte Nickel
    Does Revolut give an RIB number?
  • Re: Compte Nickel
    I just opened an account with Britline, which is part of CA. It has been noted elsewhere on this site that their fees may be slightly higher than other banks, though they seem low enough for me for simple bank services.

    The main advantages for me, though many or possibly most here wouldn't need it, is that everything is conducted in English over the phone or online and you can open an account with a UK address if you can persuade them that you plan to move to France or at least spend a lot of time there. No problem for me since we plan to come around March/April and cruise the canals in our boat while house hunting.

    My French is functional, but basic so setting it up online and by post was simple and we can always change banks later on when we are settled and our French has improved. They seem to offer all the services of other banks except that you can not pay cash into a branch of CA, though you can cheques.

    It may be worth looking at. As for international transfers I totally agree with using one of the internet based companies. Britline themselves offer one which I used for the initial, opening sum for convenience, but i will check out the rates when I start transferring monthly amounts.
  • Re: Compte Nickel
    Quote: Does Revolut give an RIB number?
    Dunno. But N26 does.
  • Re: Compte Nickel
    N26 and Revolut do not have French IBANs AFAIK - can be a problem as some French merchants/utilities will not allow payments fom non-French accts.
  • Re: Compte Nickel
    N26 and Revolut have IBANS for payments to/from any European bank account (and further afield) but as said above they are from their country of origin and not French ones. I theory that should not matter but in practice there are some organisations which don't seem to be able to cope wit that - very few from my experience.