Best banks in Spain

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30 Jan 2012 00:00 by Isabella2 Star rating. 50 posts Send private message

Any idea which are the best banks in Spain?

with varying costs on a current account?

 





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30 Jan 2012 21:55 by Tolly99 Star rating. 19 posts Send private message

we are very happy with Sabadell Solbank - and have been for 6 years - we have an excellent relationship with our bank manager and don't have any problems with fees for depositing, transferring funds. 

I think however, it depends on the manager of each branch, as they have a lot of autonomy.

 





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30 Jan 2012 22:39 by Isabella2 Star rating. 50 posts Send private message

where is your bank?

looking at the Malaga/granada area!





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30 Jan 2012 22:55 by Tolly99 Star rating. 19 posts Send private message

Near Marbella, but they seem to have branches in all the towns along the coast





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31 Jan 2012 04:03 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5247 posts Send private message

Sabadel (then Sol) charged me over £800 commission (0.5% on the total investment) to tansfer sterling to another sterling account in Spain.

 

And that was after negotiating with them. 

Steer clear of them is my very expensive advise.





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31 Jan 2012 04:05 by elaineG Star rating in Spain . 409 posts Send private message

I had a very similar experience too,   Keep away.





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31 Jan 2012 08:20 by Pilgrim Star rating in Costa Calida. 234 posts Send private message

Pilgrim´s avatar

It´s in San Javier but I have found La Caixa to be a brilliant bank. Although I try hard to speak Spanish, no worries, everybody in my branch is fluent in English, the Manager has become a friend and all the staff have always got a smile and a greeting when I visit.

It´s like a breath of fresh air when I go there. Costs are very minimal and sometimes zero.

Hope you find something similar where you are??



_______________________

pilgrim




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31 Jan 2012 11:22 by Isabella2 Star rating. 50 posts Send private message

Thanks All

I think we will keep clear of Solbank as we were with them once before and could not believe what they charged, especially as we only wanted a basic account but they took no notice,

We are looking in the south of spain  next week. so hope we will have more information to hand to give us an idea.

 





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31 Jan 2012 11:43 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5247 posts Send private message

I have been with BBVA, Caja Sur and Caja Mar and a couple of others that have been amalgated.

 

I believe, for me, that CajaMar has been the best on average. 

 

But which ever bank you chose try to negotiate what they will charge for things that you may want.   Direct Debits, receiving transfers from UK, Credit Card  etc.





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31 Jan 2012 12:55 by Eva2008 Star rating in Reading. 152 posts Send private message

Eva2008´s avatar

 I'm with LaCaixa, been with them since 2003. They are excellent and I've never had an issue. There is a current acc annual charge though.





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04 Feb 2012 22:21 by greyray Star rating in Mijas & Iznajar.. 5 posts Send private message

I have had a few accounts in Spain (Banesto & solbank not recommended) and have mostly been dissappointed with them except CAJA RURAL.

The main difference seems to be the horrendous charges made for any service they do and they also charge annually for actually having an acount with them. Also, unless you are resident in Spain, you will also have to pay an extra yearly charge to verify your status(also very annoying).

Caja Rural however have never charged me anything (apart from the annual charge of around €20) and any transferres between UK & Spain or within Spain have also been totally free.

Probably your best option is to stick with one of the Caja banks though (a sort of spanish building society), but if your Spanish is less than fluent you are also advised to find a branch that can speak to you in English and also offer internet access in English (my bank does both > Caja Rural, Fuengirola branch > behing the main church in the town square).

The only drawback of using this branch though is that parking is not good & in the summer period it is even worse. But, overall, I am very happy with my current bank & will stay with them for the forseeable future.

Hope the above is of help to you.



_______________________
All the very best, Ray, Telephone: (0034) 699752919



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04 Feb 2012 23:17 by PablodeRonda Star rating in Ronda (Málaga). 73 posts Send private message

Mmm! Interesting how different people have different perceptions of the same product.

I have had an account with Unicaja for over 11 years, but being British I object to paying their bank charges (something I've never had to do in the UK in over 40 years of banking there).

So, last November, on the recommendation of a poster on another forum, I also opened an account with Banco Sabadell. Everything is free, so long as I deposit at least 600 euros a month in the account. That's everything - direct debits, transfers, cards, withdrawals, text notifications, the lot.

So far I'm very pleased and will probably soon be closing my Unicaja account, although their Tarifa Plana account only costs 2 euros a month.



_______________________
We have a couple of rental properties, Villa Indiana in Ronda and Casa Rita in Montejaque. Take a look at www.secretserrania.com



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05 Feb 2012 10:09 by adeyboy Star rating in alcaidesa. 2 posts Send private message

i have switched banks and my current account has no activity but banco andalucia say i cannot close this account as i still have a mortgage account and the transfer needs to be done from the curent account. i want to transfer monies from another bank account to my mortgage account. this is because i incur regular charges on my stagnant account. is there any way out oft his or am i stuck with a defunct account paying charges.  aagghh spanish banks !!!!!

 





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05 Feb 2012 10:10 by Rob. Star rating. 1 posts Send private message

 

Steer clear of the Sol Bank, or what ever it's calling itself  this month. Very high charges if you are not Spanish. Cam Bank,

well, say no more!!!. Best so far found is Deutsche Bank.  Establish a relationship with staff and manager, and they will go

that extra step to help.

Hope this helps.

Rob.





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05 Feb 2012 10:27 by adeyboy Star rating in alcaidesa. 2 posts Send private message

great !!! i have a mortgae with solbank and one with banco andalucia !! just opened a free banking account with barclays and they are great so far. i transferred all debits etc from solbank and banco andalucia so theres no activity on the 2 current accounts except for a transfer to each to cover mortgage only. but am still being charged on the 2 current accounts. it has to be illegal as i want to close the accounts and do an external transfer to the mortgage accounts. this way i will have to keep the accounts open until the mortgages are paid off !!!! 





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05 Feb 2012 11:40 by Alteapair Star rating. 20 posts Send private message

 We changed our bank to BancaMarch 2 years ago and are very happy with them. The manager is really great & he and his wife have become personal friends. Many of our neighbours & friends have moved to his bank after our recommendation and they too are well pleased. They are not perfect, but if there is a mistake they will happily correct it, apologise and often forego any charges.

That said, from reading the posts on here & our own experience it does seem essential to have a good branch manager whoever your bank is. They are much more like Bank Managers used to be in UK & N European countries. I.E. They have authority over the activities of their branches & importantly what they can do for their clients. The personal relationship is key to them & how business is done in Spain, and that means as a customer we get the service, help & advice we need.

We are 3 years in Spain now and one very important lesson we have learned is to know the right people. So how does this work? Well in our case we found an excellent plumber, honest, reliable and affordable.He was proud of his reputation and relied on personal referrals for his work. So when we needed an electrician we asked the plumber who would he recommend - he wasn't going to give us a "bad un", so once again we had a great experience. It's not quite as clear cut with the banks but we only moved to ours because an English neighbour recommended them.

Good luck :-)





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05 Feb 2012 12:01 by Val Star rating in Pinar de Campoverde .... 160 posts Send private message

Val´s avatar

I can't believe people are puling Solbank down.  They have an Expansion account, , there are NO CHARGES AND FREE CARDS as long as you have your salary/pension paid in, and  at least two direct debits paid through your account.  We also receive 2% of our utility bills refunded into our account.  Not a lot but better than nothing.  Our branch is at Los Alcazares, and the staff couldn't be more helpful. 



_______________________

 Make the most of today.  It has taken all your life to get her...




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05 Feb 2012 12:01 by PablodeRonda Star rating in Ronda (Málaga). 73 posts Send private message

Rob writes: "Steer clear of the Sol Bank, or what ever it's calling itself  this month. Very high charges if you are not Spanish."

This is the opposite to my experience, which I reported in an earlier post, viz: "I ..... opened an account with Banco Sabadell. Everything is free, so long as I deposit at least 600 euros a month in the account. That's everything - direct debits, transfers, cards, withdrawals, text notifications, the lot. So far I'm very pleased."

As far as I understand it Solbank is a Banco Sabadell product aimed solely at foreigners. Maybe they have different rules and conditions and that's why Rob's experience is different to mine. The local branch manager advised me to open a normal Sabadell account, although he didn't say why. The fact that I was going to get free banking was enough for me!

For the record, the account I opened with Banco Sabadell is called Cuenta Expansión. Apart from everything being free, I forgot to mention that you also get up to 20 euros per month cashback on the value of your direct debits if you do them through the account, eg electricity, gas, water, telephone, etc.



_______________________
We have a couple of rental properties, Villa Indiana in Ronda and Casa Rita in Montejaque. Take a look at www.secretserrania.com



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05 Feb 2012 12:03 by PablodeRonda Star rating in Ronda (Málaga). 73 posts Send private message

Way to go! Val posted simultaneously to me, saying much the same thing.

BTW, I don't work for them ...



_______________________
We have a couple of rental properties, Villa Indiana in Ronda and Casa Rita in Montejaque. Take a look at www.secretserrania.com



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05 Feb 2012 12:06 by Val Star rating in Pinar de Campoverde .... 160 posts Send private message

Val´s avatar

To add to my previous post Solbank also have a regular transfer plan.  They bring over our company pensions every month, NO CHARGE, we get the interbank rate.  The money leaves our UK bank on the 25th of each month and is in our Solbank account on the 27th.



_______________________

 Make the most of today.  It has taken all your life to get her...




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