Barclays Bank to close UK accounts for British expats

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Barclays Bank has announced its decision to terminate the UK current and savings accounts for British expatriates living overseas, a move that comes after a review of the bank’s international offerings initiated in 2021.

This will affect numerous British citizens residing in countries like Thailand, among others.

Affected customers have received official communication from Barclays giving them a six-month period to prepare and make necessary arrangements. While the decision has left some customers disappointed, Barclays maintains that its UK banking products are specially tailored for residents in Britain.

A Barclays spokesman said: “We will no longer be offering personal current or savings accounts to retail customers with addresses registered with us outside of the United Kingdom, subject to limited exceptions. We are contacting impacted customers to give them advance notice of this decision and explain the next steps they need to take.”

A notice, still available for viewing on the Barclays’ website, explicitly states, “If you live outside the UK or you’re planning to move abroad in the future, there will be changes to your banking and investment products and services. You won’t be able to open any new products or services with us, or increase borrowing limits on your existing accounts.”

While the move by Barclays raises concerns, the bank offers an alternative for affected customers. Expatriates have the option of opening a global account with Barclays. However, there’s a caveat: account holders must maintain a minimum balance of £100,000 to dodge a monthly fee of £40.

“I’ve been banking with Barclays for decades, and this decision is deeply disappointing,” said a British expat residing in Hua Hin. “It feels like they’re pushing us away.”

Even those who aren’t Barclays customers have expressed concerns over the broader implications of such a decision. A reader of Hua Hin Today shared, “I don’t bank with Barclays, but this move worries me. What if other British banks decide to follow suit?”