Personal Finance

HSBC: So hard to reach, so aggravating to deal with. Does anyone like them?

  • Last Updated:
  • Aug 1st, 2020 10:15 pm
Newbie
Jan 14, 2018
51 posts
5 upvotes
ozzie16 wrote: Not converting here either. I do have accounts and credit cards in the US, UK, HK, Singapore and Malta, where I can pay bills, get better deposit rates (e.g. HSBC Singapore had a time deposit promotion for USD that paid 2%+), and have real bank accounts with an established bank (e.g. I would trust depositing my GBP in HSBC UK or EUR in HSBC Malta more than the Transferwise Borderless). Global Transfers used to have good rates, but then they went downhill a few years ago. That said, HSBC HK and Singapore do have more reasonable spreads if you exchange currency in the local account (e.g. move CAD to HSBC HK first, then convert to HKD, and the spread ends up being around 0.5%, or at least it was when I last did it.)

I think there are better solutions for US banking, but the UK and HK are important jurisdictions for me to maintain accounts in. Even though I'm a UK citizen, it seems I would have trouble opening another account in the UK without being able to prove residency, whereas I opened the HSBC UK account more than a decade ago using my Canadian address. I suppose I could use a bank in Jersey, but the alternatives have high minimum deposits too.
Newbie
Jan 14, 2018
51 posts
5 upvotes
ozzie16 wrote: Not converting here either. I do have accounts and credit cards in the US, UK, HK, Singapore and Malta, where I can pay bills, get better deposit rates (e.g. HSBC Singapore had a time deposit promotion for USD that paid 2%+), and have real bank accounts with an established bank (e.g. I would trust depositing my GBP in HSBC UK or EUR in HSBC Malta more than the Transferwise Borderless). Global Transfers used to have good rates, but then they went downhill a few years ago. That said, HSBC HK and Singapore do have more reasonable spreads if you exchange currency in the local account (e.g. move CAD to HSBC HK first, then convert to HKD, and the spread ends up being around 0.5%, or at least it was when I last did it.)

I think there are better solutions for US banking, but the UK and HK are important jurisdictions for me to maintain accounts in. Even though I'm a UK citizen, it seems I would have trouble opening another account in the UK without being able to prove residency, whereas I opened the HSBC UK account more than a decade ago using my Canadian address. I suppose I could use a bank in Jersey, but the alternatives have high minimum deposits too.
Newbie
Jan 14, 2018
51 posts
5 upvotes
hi friend, how are you able to open HSBC UK? i was just in a branch in london not long ago, asking about opening, mentioned that i am premier client in Canada, they told me not possible unless you have residency card! i told them i need to buy land and use local bank...

anyways hsbc closed my account in canada today, no reason given.... cannot close it over the phone either, must come to canada in person to do that

im pretty sure hsbc in HK also told me the same thing, not easy to open...
ozzie16 wrote: Not converting here either. I do have accounts and credit cards in the US, UK, HK, Singapore and Malta, where I can pay bills, get better deposit rates (e.g. HSBC Singapore had a time deposit promotion for USD that paid 2%+), and have real bank accounts with an established bank (e.g. I would trust depositing my GBP in HSBC UK or EUR in HSBC Malta more than the Transferwise Borderless). Global Transfers used to have good rates, but then they went downhill a few years ago. That said, HSBC HK and Singapore do have more reasonable spreads if you exchange currency in the local account (e.g. move CAD to HSBC HK first, then convert to HKD, and the spread ends up being around 0.5%, or at least it was when I last did it.)

I think there are better solutions for US banking, but the UK and HK are important jurisdictions for me to maintain accounts in. Even though I'm a UK citizen, it seems I would have trouble opening another account in the UK without being able to prove residency, whereas I opened the HSBC UK account more than a decade ago using my Canadian address. I suppose I could use a bank in Jersey, but the alternatives have high minimum deposits too.
Sr. Member
Oct 27, 2012
861 posts
832 upvotes
Toronto
appleproduct wrote: hi friend, how are you able to open HSBC UK? i was just in a branch in london not long ago, asking about opening, mentioned that i am premier client in Canada, they told me not possible unless you have residency card! i told them i need to buy land and use local bank...

anyways hsbc closed my account in canada today, no reason given.... cannot close it over the phone either, must come to canada in person to do that

im pretty sure hsbc in HK also told me the same thing, not easy to open...
I opened the account more than 10 years ago. Back then you didn’t really need a reason beyond that you travel there often. I am also a UK citizen.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Feb 1, 2006
3239 posts
1040 upvotes
Ontario
I found them very inconvenient to deal with and riddled with mistakes.

I'm glad that I closed their accts after collecting my sign up bonuses.

But opening accts with them made it easier to get my HSBC WE MC which I love.

This card is definitely a keeper despite being issued by HSBC.
Cards:HSBC WE MC 1.5%/3% travel 0 FX MC acceptance 31 day med AF $49
CTC WE MC 3% grocery, 3.54% CTC, RA, billpay
Bank: Alterna (1.9%, no fees)
Brokers: IB (For. stocks/low comm)/Reg. RBCDI(service, USD)
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Jan 9, 2011
9031 posts
10468 upvotes
Vancouver
My experience with customer service at my local branch was terrible. No surprise since the Google reviews of the place say the same thing; 1.9 stars. I only opened the account and got the credit card for the bonus, was worth it for he $800 but I didn't stick around after.

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