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While you are studying it is a good idea to open a student current account with a UK bank.

Save yourself some time and open a student bank account before term starts. 

As you can usually only open one student account research which one will be best for you. But, before you make a decision look for those with interest free overdrafts, and find out what happens to the account when you graduate.

Below we have a list of local bank but a good resource is  The Money Saving Expert website where you'll find a breakdown of the best offers.


What you'll need to open an account

You will usually need to provide:

  • Passport / Photo ID
  • Term time address (eg, tenancy agreement)
  • Confirmation that you are a student at Ravensbourne (letters can be requested through MLE2 or if you have not started Ravensbourne yet supply your UCAS offer letter)
  • Student Finance payment schedule (unless you are self financing your studies)

High street banks

Many high street banks will offer incentives such as personalised debit cards and 0% interest overdrafts. While it is tempting to approach the banks which offer the highest overdraft amount, many high street banks will charge a fixed fee of £20 - £30 per month plus £6 - £25 per item, per day if you go over the agreed overdraft limit.  

Co-operative Bank 151 Lewisham High Street, Lewisham, SE13 6AA 0208 297 9308

Barclays Bank 2 Churchill Place, London E14 5RB

HSBC 275 Greenwich High Street, London, SE10 8NF

Lloyds TSB 6 Crescent Arcade, Greenwich, London, SE10 9EJ

National Westminster 2 Greenwich Church Street, London, SE10 9BQ

Credit Unions

Credit Unions are non-profit, ethical co-operatives. They do not offer overdrafts like the high street banks but instead provide low interest loans to other members. Current account holders receive a debit card to use at any ATM machine in the LINK network, although some Credit Unions have a fair usage limit of around 20 withdrawals per month.  Ensure that you have enough funds in your account to cover direct debits and standing orders as a fee of around £10 per item usually applies. 

Greenwich Credit Union 48 Thomas St, Woolwich, SE18 6HT 020 8855 4344

Lewisham Plus Credit Union 165 New Cross Rd, New Cross, London SE14 5DG 0208 778 4738 (option 3)

London Mutual Credit Union 4 Heaton Road, Peckham, London SE15 3TH 0207 787 0770

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