Smile Current Account Reviews

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Latest Reviews

“I've had a smile current account and credit card since...”

★★★★★

written by Oiorpata on 25/01/2011

I've had a smile current account and credit card since 2004. I have been very impressed by their friendly telephone customer service team (still located in the UK) and the way everyone I have spoken to has always been willing to go out of their way to help me. No "the computer says no" attitude.
Their online customer support is also excellent. Never any problems getting help and advice even when it means a bit of extra work for the person on the other end.
They also have a really good ethical policy and don't loan money to business that have a dodgy record on human rights, international development, animal welfare and the environment.
Heartily recommended

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“Both Coop and Smile do absolutely nothing for long...”

★★☆☆☆

written by on 05/10/2010

Both Coop and Smile do absolutely nothing for long term customers. They never offer any NEW savings products with special interest rates specifically designed solely for the existing loyal customer. They also do not give 'rewards' for a defined monthly deposit into a current account.

The websites are archaic with no information on pending transactions, which always made me feel as though my money was floating in the ether when it left the account!






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“Reading the existing reviews I am surprised that Smile...”

★★★★★

written by Matarij on 25/09/2010

Reading the existing reviews I am surprised that Smile is getting some negative ones. My experience has been good overall - no problems, sometimes takes a bit too long to answer the phone, but otherwise the bank doesn't annoy me at all. I have no savings so am not interested in interest rates, so can't comment on that bit. I do hope that the negative reviews reflect a blip in Smile's service - would be a pity if it went downhill.

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“Smile Bank used to be excellent in terms of customer...”

★☆☆☆☆

written by Scottybail on 04/03/2010

Smile Bank used to be excellent in terms of customer service but very recently they have gone down hill.

I have been in situations where my cards are being denied for no reason and when I complain, the Bank either lies and says its not their fault or blames it on anti-fraud prevention. When I complain, there is no satisfactory response.

I was left high and dry without cash whilst on holiday on several occasions recently which meant I had to ring them from Australia and complain. In fact its the same every time I go away even though I email them to let them know.

I have told them I will close the account without further notice the next time it happens. I expect this will be th next time I leave the UK.

Nowadays, I do not recommend them to others. But I used to.

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“I have been signed off sick for over a year and by...”

☆☆☆☆☆

written by terri69 on 28/01/2009

I have been signed off sick for over a year and by selling stuff and borrowing money etc. have been able to hold everything together and pay my visa account every month. My current account has always been kept within the terms and conditions. Sent them a letter in December to say that I could no longer afford the payments on my visa account. Sent second letter with offer of reduced payment with supporting evidence. So far they have blocked my benefit by not issuing my replacement debit card and have now blocked access to my current account and I can't log in. I have made reduced offers of payment and also said this will be increased but due to my illness I would prefer to contact them through email or post. I have also made payments of the reduced offers. Very ethical ...

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“I just think they other excellent service and would...”

★★★★★

written by on 03/05/2008

I just think they other excellent service and would recommend their current account to anyone.
They usually come top, or very near top of independant surveys, so I have no idea why the feedback here is so unrepresentative (thats why I have wasted my precious time writing this!).

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Zephyrx's Comment

Written on: 11/05/2008

With regards to Smile getting good independent survey results - those surveys are notoriously unreliable. Many people have massively different expectations of customer service. That's why Amazon always gets very high customer service results, yet all they really actually do for the most part is post out your goods to you. <br/><br/>I suspect with Smile, a lot of people who bank with them don't have especially high expectations of banking in general - the organisations you mention such as Abbey, Bradford & Bingley etc. were all organisations with a mutual history (as is Smile). Mutual organisations are notorious for their rather amateurish approach to things, and for under-investing in their infrastructure. Smile most certainly is in that category.<br/><br/>You also have to add in the fact that lots of people seem to bank with Smile for emotional reasons (i.e. they dislike the image of the nasty big banks, and like smile's ethical policy), which ends up in a very biased perception of the bank. They give the bank a 'cuddly' image which its customer service just does not merit, in the cold hard light of day.<br/><br/>I've banked with Smile since 2001, and I can honestly say I've never had worse customer service from any other financial institution. If I could afford to pay off what I owe them and move elsewhere, I would do so immediately.

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“I changed jobs and missed some direct debits, however...”

★☆☆☆☆

written by neiluk1976 on 16/01/2008

I changed jobs and missed some direct debits, however they charged me a fortune for doing so and it would have more than covered the cost to send an automatically generated email.

Then I got an email. The tone is shocking and the last paragraph sums up their attitude towards their customers.

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“The Smile Current Account "secure messaging system" is...”

★★☆☆☆

written by aliasrob on 30/10/2007

The Smile Current Account "secure messaging system" is a joke - you can't send messages longer than 1000 characters long (this can be a real problem when you need to quote previous correspondence), and they are answered fairly infrequently. Customer services people are unhelpful.

Most of all, their over-limit charges are extortionate. I originally moved to them from Barclays because I was tired of getting charged £35 for going a couple of pounds over my limit, but it turns out that Smile are much worse on this count.

Furthermore, their online banking system is archaic and confusing to use. Compared to Barclays, who have a very good online banking system (apart from the £1000 limit on payments), it is inconsistent and confusing to use.

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“I have been trying to organise a foreign payment for 3...”

★☆☆☆☆

written by tysongem on 15/08/2007

I have been trying to organise a foreign payment for 3 weeks with Smile and haven't even had a response to 3 messages or a complaint that I have sent. Telephone line leaves you waiting on hold for ages and operators just fob you off.

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“Due to the time taken to transfer money through...”

☆☆☆☆☆

written by sc5843 on 17/02/2007

Due to the time taken to transfer money through electronic transfers, you know, where your money left another bank three days ago and still isn't recognised by the bank that you sent it to, I went overdrawn for a matter of hours by about three pounds. Yes, the account was in the red by 3 pounds at one point of the day, and then later that day it was in the black again by hundreds of pounds. The Smile current account statement showed this. However, they still charged me big in unofficial overdraft charges. The same thing has happened to me several times since, and it is always tiny amounts for less than 24 hours.

When you complain they don't respond well, and they are unhelpful and uncaring, but probably smiling due to all the unnecessary charges they must collect from people, who pay for the attractive rates that lure new customers.

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“I am pretty fussy about financial products. I have...”

★★★★★

written by kolin2003 on 20/08/2005

I am pretty fussy about financial products. I have different suppliers for my mortgage, my credit card, my ISA and my current account, because I spend a lot of time hunting for the best deals. On for my current account I use Smile, and I have never regretted it. I signed up mainly for the interest, which is massively higher than almost all of its competitors (and unlike the competition, they pay the interest on the whole balance). But the reason I haven't moved to another internet bank (as some now offer even more interest) was the help they gave me when I ran into a jam a few months ago - I forgot to bank my pay cheque and suddenly realised that a large cheque I had written was going to "bounce". I called them up and asked if there was anything they could do, expecting to be brow beaten into paying through the nose for a short term overdraft or (worse) a term loan. But the helpful chap said he would "see what he could do", and he managed to arrange a temporary, interest free, overdraft whilst my pay cheque cleared. You just don't get customer service like that from High street banks anymore.

A word of warning, a lot of the products that they cross sell are not as competitively priced as the current account, and they do try to foist them on you, so beware!

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“I transferred to a Smile current account from Lloyds...”

★★★★★

written by prothalus on 20/10/2004

I transferred to a Smile current account from Lloyds over 4 years ago after getting fed up of being ripped off by the high street bank.
It was a very easy transfer (thanks to Smile, and no thanks to Lloyds), and since then I have been continually impressed by the high standards of both the internet and phone side of the bank. Nothing is too much trouble for them. They really are a top bank.

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“I had been banking with smile for 3 years - mostly...”

☆☆☆☆☆

written by zaparcade on 27/04/2004

I had been banking with smile for 3 years - mostly because I found their internet banking facility convenient to use. Whilst banking with them they continually increased my credit card limit without my consent until I had a borrowing limit in excess of £12000! They also sent me numerous unsolicited offers in the post for loans which I had apparently already been authorised for - all I had to do was sign on the dotted line and the money was mine. However, a few months later when I applied for a modest loan with them which I did want, they point blank refused. This was at a time when my bank account had been continually in credit during the previous 6 months and I had never ever been outside my agreed borrowing limits with them. I thought there must be a mistake, so I asked them to review my application, but again they refused with no further explanation.

I firmly believe that the reason they refused to give me a loan when I requested one was because at that time I had very nearly paid my credit card balance off, and they simply wanted me to use my credit card instead of taking out a loan (thereby making more money). I have since secured credit for the loan elsewhere with no problem, whereas Smile were completely uncooperative and totally unhelpful. I would never had expected such behaviour from my own bank, whom I felt I had been loyal to and built up a rapport with. My advice is to steer clear!

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Alexandkate's Response to zaparcade's Review

Written on: 05/08/2005

Totally agree
<br>Smile just don't want to know and are prepared to rip off customers who go overdrawn (doesn't matter how much) even ones with money in smile savings accounts.

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“First of all, the bad bits about the Smile Current...”

★★★★★

written by cdownton on 20/02/2004

First of all, the bad bits about the Smile Current Account - it's difficult to get an account, mainly because of the new laws on fraud and money laundering. You have to send in quite a few proofs of ID and address, but similar to most UK banks now.

The good bits are very good, you can relax with competitive rates of interest - both current account, savings and ISA (and numerous other products) and they're all accessible from one page with a (sometimes depressing) 'what you're worth' number.

The people at the centre are extremely friendly and the service is prompt, efficient and effective. They can all get things done (no passing to other departments) and they all know their stuff.

Overall, it's a great product and I would urge anyone with a big 4 bank to switch immediately because smile offer some of the best rates and customer service around.

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“Let's set one thing straight first of all - I am not a...”

☆☆☆☆☆

written by Bob. on 26/05/2003

Let's set one thing straight first of all - I am not a complainer by nature.

Ok - let's start. Initially every thing was fine, the account ticked over smoothly with no trouble at all.

Then, by an oversight on my part, I slipped over drawn by an amazing, a whopping - 41p !!!!!
To rectify the matter I payed in funds to cover this immediately and E mailed Smile to advise them of my oversight and apologise. Now here comes the funny part - I was told that it was basically 'TOUGH - WE ARE GOING TO CHARGE YOU £41.50 FOR BECOMING 41p OVERDRAWN!!'.
I was completely gobsmacked, a 41p overdraft was going to cost me £41.50!
The clever part of this is that you start to get charged the second that you go over your agreed overdraft limit, and because Smile don't have any branches, you have to pay in at the post office or other Co-op branches, with the funds taking 3 days to credit to your account (it's longer if it's cheques).
So in conclusion. Co-op (or Smile) are just out to exploit the Banking service of the country and ruthlessly rob their customers with un-necessary charges.
Further to this, when I demanded the name and address of the Chief Exec to write to so I could make them aware of my case, I was told that they didn't know his name or where he was based, and that he wouldn't care anyway.

My advice is simple - steer well clear of Smile.co.uk.

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118072_Richard.'s Response to 101554_Bob.'s Review

Written on: 23/07/2003

Why were you charged for being overdrawn when Smile apparently have a fee free £500 overdraft facility?

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Susanbrown's Response to 101554_Bob.'s Review

Written on: 16/09/2008

The same has happened to me, several times now and I am currently looking for a new bank. &pound;30 plus interest for going over your overdraft limit is ridiculous. Especially, when I had money arrive in my account later that day. I am not smiling!

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Zaparcade's Response to 101554_Bob.'s Review

Written on: 09/08/2005

I agree completely.
I've changed my bank now, and am just very relieved that I now bank with a proper bank rather than with this bunch .

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Gerrycurtis's Response to 101554_Bob.'s Review

Written on: 14/04/2004

I have been banking with Smile for several years and have had no such problems. We have a free £500 overdraft facility that we have never needed to go over. I don't intend to find out what happens if I do!
<br>The bank has provided us with excellent service and always replies promptly and helpfully to secure emails.

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Maverick28's Response to 101554_Bob.'s Review

Written on: 03/02/2004

I think he was charged because he went over his agreed overdraft limit. Be warned!

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