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Unrebellious Britain: Two in five Brits still use the same bank their parents chose for them as children

20th March 2018


Brits are more likely to use the same bank as their parents than they are to support the same football team or vote the same way
TSB calls for Brits to rebel against the ‘bank picked by Mum and Dad’ and switch today

New research from TSB1 has found that nearly two in five (39%) people still use the same bank their parents chose for them. Yet further research2 from TSB found that four in five people who bank with the ‘big five’ believe their bank does “as little as possible” for them.

Brits have not always been so inclined to stick to the status quo when it comes to other aspects of their lives and took pleasure in rebelling against their parents’ choices. The findings show that more than half (56%) of people rebelled against their parents as teenagers, either through their style, career choice, or a love interest their parents disapproved of. Yet, the research reveals that only one in 10 (10%) say they have rebelled against their parents’ choice of bank and have simply stuck with what was chosen for them.

The study also found Brits are more likely to use the bank their parents chose for them (39%) than they are to support the same football team (23%) or vote for the same political party (36%).

TSB is calling for all Brits to rebel against the bank chosen by their parents and to shop around to see if they can get a better deal by switching providers – a bank that suits their needs as an adult and not what suited their parents’ needs when they were a child.

The importance of switching…

As Britain’s challenger bank, TSB continues to call for banking to be exposed to the full force of competition, and for customers to be put in control of their banking, at last. Brits across the UK are missing out on some great benefits that they’d receive if they switched bank accounts - but they can’t currently make the most of switching.

In 2017, just 931,956 people – around only 2% of UK consumers – used the Current Account Switch Service3. This is despite people feeling the ‘big five’ are doing the bare minimum to keep their customers happy, and the average person being £70 better off by switching4.

The Bank believes there are a range of interconnected issues preventing the banking market from operating in the best interests of consumers. When taken together, these issues have created a market that has been stacked against consumers for far too long:

1. Consumers don’t know what they are actually paying for their day-to-day banking.

2. Consumers can’t easily assess whether a competitor product would be better for them.

3. Not all consumers can easily move their bank account – particularly overdraft users who are least likely to switch but stand to gain the most.

Switching six times in a lifetime

There are a number of key milestones in our lives and TSB has identified at least six times when people should consider switching banks throughout their lifetime – to ensure they’re making the most of their money.

Whether it’s leaving home for university or taking out a mortgage for the first time, a change in personal circumstances is a chance for people to take stock and re-evaluate their relationship with their bank.

Top tips from TSB

TSB recommends Brits should think about switching banks during these life stages:

  • Student life – do you want a student account that offers you cashback for joining or a bank that helps you manage your money?
  • Travelling in your twenties – do you want to find a bank account that offers low or no fees for taking out money abroad?
  • Starting your first job – do you want an account that has the best interest rate on a current account as you enter the world of work?
  • Becoming a first-time buyer – do you want a bank that offers the best mortgage rates for first-time buyers?
  • Stepping-up – do you want to secure the best mortgage rates for your next property?
  • Preparing for retirement – do you need an account that helps you make the most of your savings if you’re no longer in work?

Craig Bundell, Director of Personal Current Accounts at TSB, commented: “There’s no ‘one size fits all’ solution when it comes to finding the best bank account, but making sure that you’re making the most of your bank account is vital – particularly at big moments in your lifetime. However it’s very easy to fall into the trap of sticking with the one bank account that you’ve had for a number of years. People need a bank account that suits their needs as an adult and not what suited their parents’ needs when they were a child.”

“As Britain’s challenger bank, it’s our mission to make banking better for all UK consumers and that includes ensuring people look at their existing current account and make sure they are getting the best deal. Sadly, we know too few people are switching their current account and are missing out on some great benefits.”


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Notes to editors


  • 1The research was conducted in February 2018 by One Poll surveying 2,000 UK adults.
  • 2The ‘big five’ banks are HSBC, Barclays, RBS, Lloyds and Santander – based on their share of the UK current account market. TSB’s research was conducted by an independent research agency in November / December 2017 surveying 2,000 UK adults.
  • 3Data from the Current Account Switch Service reveals that in 2017 there were 931,956 switches. This compares to 1,010,423 switches in the previous 12 months.
  • 4Competition and Markets Authority, Personal Current Accounts Market Study Update (2014)

About TSB

TSB was built to bring more competition to UK banking and ultimately make banking better for all UK consumers. TSB only serves local customers and local businesses, to help fuel local economies, because communities thriving across Britain is a good thing for all of us.

We have a simple, straightforward and transparent banking model and make clear on our website how we operate and make money. We offer the products and services people tell us they want, with none of the funny stuff people normally associate with traditional banks.

Our five million customers appear to notice: TSB is Britain’s most recommended high street bank and was identified as one of the top 10 big companies to work for in 2017.

For further information about TSB Bank plc, please visit our website