New high street bank launches in Holborn allowing customers to open accounts within 15 minutes


A new high street bank where customers can open an account and receive a debit or credit card within 15 minutes has opened in London this week.

The first Metro Bank in Holborn will be open seven days a week in a bid to offer a “revolutionary” approach to banking.

Vernon Hill, one of the founders of the bank, said: “I have opened 500 similar locations in America. Britons are dying for revolution in the banking business, focused on service, and we are here to provide it”.

Chief executive Craig Donaldson said: “Lose your debit card on a good night out on a Saturday, you can come in on Sunday morning and we’ll print out a new card straight away”.

Apart from the long opening hours and quick account set-up scheme, the bank has a number of other selling points, such as allowing customers to bring their dogs into the branch where they can receive a free dog treat. New account holders will also be gifted a free sandwich toaster and children will be given lollipops.

However, the savings and mortgage rates are not good enough to compete with other successful banks, said analysts.

Overdraft charges are set at 15 per cent and the bank’s interest-only savings account pays just 0.5 per cent – other high street banks have a rate of just under three per cent.

Michael Slade, of financial information service Moneyfacts, said: “Although [the bank is] offering all these benefits, one of the main things for people is a competitive interest rate. If they have not got at least a reasonable rate of interest, people will discount them. They are going to struggle to get market share”.

It is hoped that 10,000 current accounts will be opened at the bank in the first year and there are plans to build ten more Metro Bank branches in London within the next two years.