First Direct

First Direct was founded in 1989 by Midland Bank, whose own name is no longer in use following its acquisition by HSBC in 1992. The First Direct brand lived on with its own name and reputation.

First Direct has no high street branches of its own, relying instead on internet and phone services. But as First Direct is owned by HSBC, customers are able to use the HSBC branch network.

It also offers home and travel insurance, underwritten by Aviva.

First Direct
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Gold ribbon: first place

Bank accounts

Ranked 2nd of 30 providers reviewed.

Customer happiness 82%
Customer trust 71%
Complaints performance 74%
Transparency rating 63%
Fairer Finance score
Reviewed Spring 2019
72%
Gold ribbon: first place

Credit cards

Ranked 1st of 34 providers reviewed.

Customer happiness 72%
Customer trust 74%
Complaints performance 74%
Transparency rating 58%
Fairer Finance score
Reviewed Spring 2019
69%

Home insurance

Ranked 26th of 47 providers reviewed.

Customer happiness 49%
Customer trust 44%
Complaints performance 70%
Transparency rating 63%
Fairer Finance score
Reviewed Spring 2019
56%
Gold ribbon: first place

Mortgages

Ranked 4th of 23 providers reviewed.

Customer happiness 67%
Customer trust 62%
Complaints performance 73%
Transparency rating 57%
Fairer Finance score
Reviewed Spring 2019
65%
Gold ribbon: first place

Personal loans

Ranked 2nd of 24 providers reviewed.

Customer happiness 73%
Customer trust 71%
Complaints performance 74%
Transparency rating 57%
Fairer Finance score
Reviewed Spring 2019
69%
Gold ribbon: first place

Savings accounts

Ranked 7th of 42 providers reviewed.

Customer happiness 67%
Customer trust 68%
Complaints performance 74%
Transparency rating 48%
Fairer Finance score
Reviewed Spring 2019
64%
Gold ribbon: first place

Travel insurance

Ranked 12th of 59 providers reviewed.

Customer happiness 66%
Customer trust 63%
Complaints performance 70%
Transparency rating 30%
Fairer Finance score
Reviewed Spring 2019
57%

Bank accounts

Current accounts

Foreign use bank accounts

First Direct

1st Account with First Directory

2 stars
Limit to non-sterling cash withdrawal before increase in withdrawal fee i

First Direct

1st Account

1 stars
Limit to non-sterling cash withdrawal before increase in withdrawal fee i

Overdrafts

Packaged bank accounts

Credit cards

0% balance transfers

First Direct

Balance Transfer Credit Card

3 stars
Balance transfer rate during promotional period i 0%
Duration of offer period for 0% balance transfers i 27 months
Representative APR i 18.90%
Risk based? i
Representative balance transfer rate i 1.46%

0% purchases

First Direct

Gold Purchases

4 stars
Purchase rate during promotional period i 0%
Duration of offer period for 0% purchases i 17 months
Representative APR i 16.90%
Risk based? i
Representative purchase rate i 1.32%
Number of days before interest is charged on purchases i 56 days

Foreign use credit cards

First Direct

Balance Transfer Credit Card

3 stars
Representative APR i 18.90%
Foreign purchase fee i 2.99%
Foreign withdrawal fee i 2.99%
Risk based? i
Number of days before interest is charged on non-sterling cash transactions i 0 days
Representative purchase rate i 1.46%

First Direct

Gold Purchases

3 stars
Representative APR i 16.90%
Foreign purchase fee i 2.99%
Foreign withdrawal fee i 2.99%
Risk based? i
Number of days before interest is charged on non-sterling cash transactions i 0 days
Representative purchase rate i 1.32%

Low rate

First Direct

Gold Purchases

4 stars
Representative APR i 16.90%
Representative cash transaction rate i 1.81%
Representative purchase rate i 1.32%
Risk based? i
Representative balance transfer rate i 1.32%
Representative money transfer rate i

Home insurance

First Direct

Home Insurance

4 stars
Escape of water excess i £50
Matching sets i
Theft from outbuildings i £3,000
24hr helpline i
Alternative accommodation i 20% of sum insured or up to £80,000
Cover for keys/locks if lost i £1,000
Money in the home i £750
New for old i

Buildings insurance

First Direct

Home Insurance

4 stars
Trace & access i £5,000
Matching sets i
Cover for keys/locks if lost i £1,000
Compulsory excess i £50
Escape of water excess i £50
Alternative accommodation cover limit i 20% of sum insured or up to £80,000
Cover for keys/locks if stolen i £1,000
Property owner liability i £2,000,000
24hr helpline i

Contents insurance

First Direct

Home Insurance

4 stars
Theft from outbuildings i £3,000
Matching sets i
Cover for keys/locks if lost i £1,000
Cycles included whilst in the home i Part of sum insured
New for old i
Alternative accomodation i £10,000
Money in the home i £750
Cover for keys/locks if stolen i £1,000
24hr helpline i

Travel insurance

Annual multi-trip insurance

First Direct

Annual trip (with baggage cover)

4 stars
Medical excess i £50
Cancelling before travel i £5,000
Personal possessions & baggage - damaged, lost or stolen i £1,500
Max trip duration i 31 days
Emergency medical cover and repatriation i £10,000,000
Cutting trip short/curtailment i £5,000
Abandoning your trip i £5,000
Lost or stolen cash i £300
Combined passport & travel i £750
Natural disaster relocation cover i
Natural disaster baggage cover i
Mental health cover i

First Direct

Annual trip

3 stars
Medical excess i £50
Cancelling before travel i £5,000
Personal possessions & baggage - damaged, lost or stolen i £0
Max trip duration i 31 days
Emergency medical cover and repatriation i £10,000,000
Cutting trip short/curtailment i £5,000
Abandoning your trip i £5,000
Lost or stolen cash i £300
Combined passport & travel i £750
Natural disaster relocation cover i
Natural disaster baggage cover i
Mental health cover i

Single trip insurance

First Direct

Single trip (with baggage cover)

4 stars
Medical excess i £50
Cancelling before travel i £5,000
Personal possessions and baggage - damaged, lost or stolen i £1,500
Emergency medical cover and repatriation i £10,000,000
Cutting trip short/curtailment i £5,000
Missed departure i £1,000
Abandoning your trip i £5,000
Lost or stolen cash i £300
Combined passport & travel i £750

First Direct

Single Trip

3 stars
Medical excess i £50
Cancelling before travel i £5,000
Personal possessions and baggage - damaged, lost or stolen i £0
Emergency medical cover and repatriation i £10,000,000
Cutting trip short/curtailment i £5,000
Missed departure i £1,000
Abandoning your trip i £5,000
Lost or stolen cash i £300
Combined passport & travel i £750

Winter sports add-on

First Direct

Travel insurance

3 stars
Ski equipment owned i £500
Single item limit for owned equipment i £500
Hiring replacement winter sports equipment i £200
Ski equipment owned excess i £50
Ski equipment hired i £400
Single item limit for hired equipment i £400
Avalanche closure i £200
Piste closure i £300
Unused ski pass due to illness or injury i £300