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Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Old Feb 25th 2023, 3:16 pm
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Default Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

We have been living in Canada for almost 33 years. We have been contributing to our UK State Pension and wish to open up a bank account to be able to make payments easier. Which banks are the preferred method for these sort of transactions. We have British Passports.
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Old Feb 25th 2023, 4:40 pm
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

If you are not residendent in the UK it is unlikely that any UK bank will currently open an account for you, which means that your only viable option is something like the "borderless account" that Wise offers.

Wise will give you a Sort Code and account number that looks exactly like a UK bank account, which can be used to both send and receive payments, so which should meet your needs, however I would point out that Wise is not a bank and a "borderless account is" not a bank account* for the purposes of deposit insurance, so I would treat a borderless account primarily as a transactional service, not a place to hold significant funds.

* Wise's web site talks about how you are protected by "segregation of funds" which is great, but that is not the same as, nor IMO a complete replacement for deposit insurance, which pays back 100% of the first £85,000 of your deposit (UK rules) if a bank fails.
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Old Mar 16th 2023, 11:29 pm
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

The UK International Pension Centre will send your pension to any Canadian Bank, either as GBP or as CAN$.

I phoned them and they were very helpful, everything was sorted out in one phone call.

​​​​​​https://www.gov.uk/international-pension-centre
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Old Mar 17th 2023, 9:19 pm
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

We have a UK HSBC account which we opened since we lived in Canada. It is linked to our Canadian HSBC accounts and we can instantly transfer money between them.
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Old Mar 20th 2023, 6:39 pm
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Originally Posted by S and J W
We have been living in Canada for almost 33 years. We have been contributing to our UK State Pension and wish to open up a bank account to be able to make payments easier. Which banks are the preferred method for these sort of transactions. We have British Passports.
HSBC, Barclays & Lloyds are the top 3 banks in the UK.
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Old Apr 8th 2023, 4:37 am
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Originally Posted by HGerchikov
We have a UK HSBC account which we opened since we lived in Canada. It is linked to our Canadian HSBC accounts and we can instantly transfer money between them.
I have this set up with HSBC Canada for my Canadian pension and Investments when I moved back to the UK. HSBC are pulling out of Canada at the end of the year and have been bought out by RBC providing the authorities authorise the sale. I am not sure how this will work out!
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Old Apr 14th 2023, 12:11 pm
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Originally Posted by getoutofbritainquick
I have this set up with HSBC Canada for my Canadian pension and Investments when I moved back to the UK. HSBC are pulling out of Canada at the end of the year and have been bought out by RBC providing the authorities authorise the sale. I am not sure how this will work out!
I opened up HSBC premier last week and asked the branch manager this question, he said the reason RBC purchased HSBC Canada was to leverage its international connections and learn from them, and potentially bridge the gap over to RBC customers as well.

He said they do not plan to amalgamate HSBC accounts into RBC, they plan to run it as a separate company as it is now, and they do not plan to disrupt the unique international features of HSBC. HSBC Canada will continue to accept new clients and such as well.


HTH.
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Old Apr 14th 2023, 12:56 pm
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Originally Posted by HGerchikov
We have a UK HSBC account which we opened since we lived in Canada. It is linked to our Canadian HSBC accounts and we can instantly transfer money between them.
I think HSBC is in general a wise choice.

This works both ways, by the way.

Opening a UK account from Canada and opening a Canadian account from the UK.

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Old Apr 14th 2023, 2:03 pm
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Originally Posted by OrangeMango
I think HSBC is in general a wise choice.

This works both ways, by the way.

Opening a UK account from Canada and opening a Canadian account from the UK.
As already posted above, HSBC is withdrawing from Canada by the end of 2023. HSBC banking operations in Canada have been sold to RBC.

Last edited by Pulaski; Apr 14th 2023 at 2:47 pm.
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Old Apr 14th 2023, 2:23 pm
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Originally Posted by Gozit
I opened up HSBC premier last week and asked the branch manager this question, he said the reason RBC purchased HSBC Canada was to leverage its international connections and learn from them, and potentially bridge the gap over to RBC customers as well.

He said they do not plan to amalgamate HSBC accounts into RBC, they plan to run it as a separate company as it is now, and they do not plan to disrupt the unique international features of HSBC. HSBC Canada will continue to accept new clients and such as well.


HTH.
That would be good. I don’t really want to cash in an investment policy with HSBC Canada and take a hit with the 30% withholding tax.
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Old Apr 17th 2023, 9:59 pm
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Originally Posted by Gozit
I opened up HSBC premier last week and asked the branch manager this question, he said the reason RBC purchased HSBC Canada was to leverage its international connections and learn from them, and potentially bridge the gap over to RBC customers as well.

He said they do not plan to amalgamate HSBC accounts into RBC, they plan to run it as a separate company as it is now, and they do not plan to disrupt the unique international features of HSBC. HSBC Canada will continue to accept new clients and such as well.


HTH.
They'd probably have to change the name from HSBC though; it would be similar to when Scotia Bank bought ING Canada and renamed it to Tangerine.
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Old Mar 31st 2024, 3:15 am
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Originally Posted by Gozit
I opened up HSBC premier last week and asked the branch manager this question, he said the reason RBC purchased HSBC Canada was to leverage its international connections and learn from them, and potentially bridge the gap over to RBC customers as well.

He said they do not plan to amalgamate HSBC accounts into RBC, they plan to run it as a separate company as it is now, and they do not plan to disrupt the unique international features of HSBC. HSBC Canada will continue to accept new clients and such as well.


HTH.
HSBC accounts have certainly been merged into RBC accounts. From the merger literature my wife and I get 1 year of "free banking" before we have to pay bank charges. We have had nothing but issues with the transfer, my RBC client card 'got lost' in the post, my wifes RBC client turned card up but she cannot set up on line banking. We received our new RBC credit cards and managed to activate them ok. The accounts are not active until 1st April and I have been unable to transfer my monthly Canadian pensions over as yet. It will be interesting to see what's in store on the 1st April! I have been on the phone to them on several occasions as some of their features require you to put in a Canadian postcode to confirm identity! Their international call collect service is still chargeable from UK mobile phones! What is not clear is we appear to lose all the benefits of having a Canadian HSBC Premier account but as you say the international global view and money transfer is still available. Early days yet but so far not impressed and it's been quite stressful.
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Old Mar 31st 2024, 10:14 pm
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Welcome to Canada as they say. Competition what is that? So sad that HSBC is gone from Canada after 40 years. They were really different and better than the local big banks. And indeed fees coming up.......
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Old Apr 1st 2024, 3:04 am
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Originally Posted by Wharfer
Welcome to Canada as they say. Competition what is that? So sad that HSBC is gone from Canada after 40 years. They were really different and better than the local big banks. And indeed fees coming up.......
There is a reason we left! Our RBC accounts became active yesterday and I tried at do a global transfer on my monthly pension. I have a Canadian $ account with HSBC in the UK so can avoid their poor exchange rate fees. The global view shows our UK accounts but you have to set up international transfers from scratch. When I pressed the 'transfer now' button it requires you to identify yourself by using either a Canadian driving license or Canadian passport. Obviously we no longer have our Canadian driving license and the Canadian passport recognition system doesn't work so I was unable to complete the transfer. So next week I will have to call RBC in Canada for the 5th time. I cannot call a toll free 0800 number in Canada from my mobile and have to use call collect which is supposed to be free. It is not and I get charged by my mobile provider to call Canada. I won't be staying with RBC for long!
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Old Apr 1st 2024, 3:14 am
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Default Re: Opening up a UK Bank Account from Canada - Which Bank is Best?

Originally Posted by jandro
They'd probably have to change the name from HSBC though; it would be similar to when Scotia Bank bought ING Canada and renamed it to Tangerine.
Nope, it's still called RBC and uses all of RBC's online banking as normal. So far they have been really disappointing and not really thought issues through. For example, my wife couldn't set up RBC online banking from her old HSBC account but I could. The other way was to use her new RBC client card but it requires you to use the client card number and a Canadian postcode to set up! Toll free numbers from UK mobiles don't work and call collect incurs international charges.
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