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Best Banks Like Starling Bank in the UK: Fees, Features, and More

Byron Mühlberg, writer at Monito.com

Byron Mühlberg

Guide

Jarrod Suda

Reviewer

Apr 11, 2023
Advertiser disclosure

If you're a fan of Starling Bank's user-friendly mobile app and innovative banking features, there's a good chance you'll be interested in exploring other challenger banks (both licensed banks and e-money institutions) that offer similar perks. After all, while Starling Bank is undoubtedly a leader in digital banking in the UK, there are other options available that might better suit your banking needs.

In this post, we'll introduce you to some of the best banks like Starling that we think are worth considering. Whether you're looking for a bank with low fees, advanced budgeting tools, or international payment options, we've got you covered. We'll provide a brief overview of each bank's key features and benefits, so you can compare them to Starling Bank and choose the one that best meets your needs.

recommendation icon

Here are our recommendations for the best online accounts like Starling in summary:

  • Wise: Best for international transfers and multiple foreign bank details. | Read our full review.
  • Monzo: Best for saving, budgeting, and good interest rates. | Read our full review.
  • Suits Me: Best for new arrivals and no credit-check requirements when applying.
  • Monese: Best for easy account opening and new EEA arrivals. | Read our full review.

So if you're ready to discover some of the top banks like Starling, read on! Whether you're looking to switch banks or simply want to explore your options, we're confident that our list will help you find the perfect banking solution for you.

Monzo: Best for Savings

Monzo is a regulated UK bank and probably the country's most famous online-only account.

An excellent choice if you're looking to escape the high fees of traditional banks, Monzo charges no fees for day-to-day card use (e.g. cashpoint withdrawals and card payments) in the UK and abroad. Moreover, because it offers one of the most advanced and comprehensive savings systems we've seen from any challenger bank (allowing lots of flexibility over your time horizon and savings goals), we think Monzo is especially well-suited for managing and growing wealth, regardless of your individual goals.

  • Account type: Personal current account + personal savings account
  • Licensing: Bank
  • Overview of plans:

Account Name

Fee /Month

Monzo

£0.00

Monzo Plus

£5.00

Monzo Premium

£15.00

  • Potential costs: 3% per withdrawal if you withdraw over £250 /month.
  • Noteworthy features: Fixed Pot, Easy Access Savings, overdrafts, loans, bill splitting.
  • More info: See our Monzo review or visit the website.

Wise: Best for Cross-Border Living

Wise isn't a bank in the UK but a money-transfer-app-turned-neobank that's well-known for offering some of the cheapest international transfers globally.

Although it's most famous for its money transfers, these aren't Wise's only speciality. Wise also offers the Wise Multi-Currency Account, a low-cost foreign currency spending account and card product that's best in class for foreign currency spending of all kinds, whether it's holidays overseas, online shopping, or international money transfers.

  • Account type: Personal current account
  • Licensing: E-money license
  • Account maintenance: £0 /month
  • Potential costs: £0.50 per cash machine withdrawal if more than two withdrawals are made monthly, plus 1.75% on withdrawals exceeding £200 per month.
  • Noteworthy features: International money transfers, multiple account details (GBP, USD, CAD, EUR, and six others), and multi-currency balances.
  • More info: See our Wise Account review or visit the website.

Suits Me: Best for New Arrivals

Suits Me is a reliable banking alternative for new arrivals in the UK and for customers who don't want to go through the credit-check process to open a current account.

Suits Me offers an easy and fast account opening process without requiring credit checks or proof of address. Additionally, you also get a prepaid debit MasterCard, online banking services, and the ability to receive payments from employers and other sources (e.g. Faster Payments, BACS, and CHAPS, although not international SWIFT transfers).

  • Account type: Personal current account
  • Licensing: E-money license
  • Overview of plans:

Account Name

Fee /Month

Essential

£0.00

Premium

£4.97

Premium Plus

£9.97

  • Potential costs: Over 2.6% to top up the account with cash at a PayPoint, 2.35% - 2.57% foreign currency exchange cost, £4.97 - £9.97 for the production of your debit card.
  • Noteworthy features: No credit check, no overdraft facilities or debt, cashback, and multi-lingual customer support.
  • More info: Visit the website.

Monese: Best for Easy Registration

Monese is a mobile-only challenger bank that offers fully-fledged checking accounts to more than two million customers across much of Europe.

Because Monese doesn't require you to prove your residence to meet creditworthiness standards to open an account in the UK, we think Monese is especially well-suited for new arrivals to the UK from the European Economic Area (EEA).

  • Account type: Personal current account
  • Licensing: E-money license
  • Overview of plans:

Account Name

Fee /Month

Simple

£0.00

Classic

£5.95

Premium

£14.95

  • Potential costs: £1.50 per cash machine withdrawal; 2% per foreign currency transaction not in GBP, EUR, SEK, or RON; £4.95 for debit card delivery.
  • Noteworthy features: PayPal integration, Avios integration, Money pots, interest.
  • More info: See our full Monese review or visit the website.

Comparing the Best Banks Like Starling

To wrap things up, let's compare the product, service, and pricing of the banks like Starling Bank we explored above. Here, you can get a better idea of which one might best suit your needs and preferences:

Starling Bank

Monzo

Wise

Monese

Account

Personal Account

Monzo

Multi-Currency Account

Starter

Currency

GBP

GBP

GBP and 9 others

GBP and 2 others

Maintanance

£0

£0

£0

£0

Cashpoint

£0

£0

£0

£1.5

Intl Payment

0

0

0

0.015

Intl Transfer

0.004

0.3%-2.9%

0.3%-2.9%

0.025

Contactless

Google Pay

Apple Pay

Top-up

  • Bank transfer
  • Cash deposit
  • Bank transfer
  • Cash deposit
  • Bank transfer
  • Debit/credit card
  • Bank transfer
  • Debit/credit card

Overdraft

Platforms

Mobile, internet banking

Mobile

Mobile

Mobile, internet banking

Insured

£85,000

£85,000

£0

£85,000

Customers

2 million

5.5 million

10 million

16 million

Try StarlingTry MonzoTry WiseTry Monese

Last updated: 19/1/2022

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