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New initiatives from permanent tsb to make opening current accounts even easier for Irish consumers, including up to €500 ‘emergency cash buffer’


Switching household bills saves Irish families a handy €1,640 annually, according to new research from permanent tsb – enough to pay for newly introduced household charges including the property tax and water charges, or a family holiday.

Power Switchers – those consumers who have switched all their household bills at least once – continue to show Irish consumers where the value is, by netting the largest savings on their household bills. Savvy Power Switchers are also the group most likely to have saved themselves enough to take a foreign holiday in 2014.

Other highlights of the research include:

  • Consumers are switching providers more frequently than ever across the car insurance, electricity, mobile phone and broadband sectors with big jumps recorded in these areas since January.
  • High levels of frustration continue, particularly in the banking and health insurance sectors, with health insurance emerging as one of the biggest headache bills for families, due to a combination of rising prices and limited competition in the sector.
  • Health insurance and current accounts are the two sectors where Irish households are least likely to switch providers, despite recent price hikes in both sectors. Less than one in five Irish people have switched health insurers in the past twelve months, with around one in ten switching bank account provider.
  • Bank switchers to continue to rate the experience as positive and as good or better than expected. The majority feel great that they switched and say they should have done it long ago. Over three quarters indicate that they were satisfied with the overall switching experience.

Commenting, economist Gerard O’Neill from Amárach Research, who undertook the research on permanent tsb’s behalf, said:

Consumers are increasingly switching on to the savings to be had by shopping around for better value on their household bills, however they’re much better at finding the savings in some sectors than others.

The biggest savings are to be found in the sectors that are currently the least switched – notably health insurance and main current bank account. The research shows that if consumers adopted a more proactive approach to shopping around for better value on these household bills as well as the others, chances are – just like the Power Switchers - they’d have the extra cash to splash on that family holiday this summer.

The Switching Index – the score which reflects a consumer’s ability appetite to move between providers – was highest for car insurance (58), followed by mobile phone (57). The most significant change came in the broadband category, which dropped from 54 to 51, reflecting consumer frustrations about the range of choice of providers in the sector. Banking and health insurance are the sectors with the lowest Switching Index score, meaning they are least likely to be switched.

Commenting, economist Gerard O’Neill from Amárach Research, who undertook the research on permanent tsb’s behalf, said:

For all the protests about the coming water charges, we are pouring similar amounts of money down the drain with unnecessary and pointless bank charges. We see from a major new bank switching campaign in the UK that a simpler no-hassle current account opening process leads to much greater choice and large savings for customers. For this reason, it’s important that we now have simpler switching in Ireland. The experience of bank account switchers continues to be positive, however removing perceived barriers and increasing the level of choice available will be key to generating momentum in the sector and unlocking the value to be had for consumers.

permanent tsb introduces new initiatives to make switching even easier for Irish consumers, including up to €500 emergency cash buffer

permanent tsb today launched a range of measures designed to make it even easier and faster for consumers to open a current account with permanent tsb. These include:

  • Up to €500 emergency cash buffer for switchers - in the unlikely event where your switch is delayed and your old bank confirms your account balance is more than or equal to the buffer you require.
  • Immediate account opening – leave the branch with your current account IBAN, BIC and internet banking details and access immediately
  • Receive your card and PIN in five working days.
  • permanent tsb is the only bank with a dedicated awarding winning switching team to help switchers throughout the process

Commenting, Niall O’Grady, Director of Transactional Banking, Savings and Investments in permanent tsb said:

We’re pleased to announce a number of enhancements to our account opening process to make it even easier and faster for customers to open an account with permanent tsb. More than 20000 customers have joined permanent tsb since the beginning of the year to avail of banking without senseless fees. We’re confident that the measures we are announcing today will help encourage more people to check out the details of our offering and to open an account with us.

Based on research conducted by Amárach Research on behalf of permanent tsb, the Switching Index is designed to compare and contrast consumer loyalty and satisfaction across a range of household necessities and to explore the reasons why consumers switch in each area, why they don’t, as well as their overall attitudes to money. The research was carried out amongst a nationally aligned sample in April 2014.

Last year, permanent tsb bucked the trend of other Irish banks who have started pushing up current account fees, by introducing banking without senseless fees - no quarterly or day to day transaction fees and no minimum balance to be maintained when a customer lodges €1,500 per month. There is a €12 quarterly fee if you don’t lodge €1,500 a month. Other transaction charges may apply.

More than 40,000 customers opened a current account with permanent tsb in 2013 and more than 20,000 customers have joined permanent tsb since the beginning of 2014.

Find out if you are a ‘Power Switcher’ and how much you stand to save by taking the online test. Tweet us your switching stories at @askpermanenttsb or using #feelingswitchy

About the permanent tsb Switching Index

The permanent tsb Switching Index is a new report designed to compare and contrast consumer loyalty across a range of household necessities and to explore the reasons why consumers switch in each area, as well as their overall attitudes to switching, spending and saving.

Amárach Research has worked with permanent tsb to design a measure of just how ready, willing and able Irish consumers are to switch suppliers across a range of household necessities. The sectors covered are electricity, broadband, car insurance, mobile phone providers and banking.

The permanent tsb Switching Index is based upon consumer responses to the following questions:

  • Level of customer satisfaction / frustration with their current provider
  • Range of choice available in each category
  • Positive / negative sentiment about a provider / sector
  • Whether bills / charges are rising or falling in that category
  • Likelihood of changing provider in the next 12 months

The answers to these questions are then combined to create the permanent tsb Switching Index for each category. The Index ranges from 0 to 100 - the closer the Index is to zero then the lower the probability that consumers will switch in a particular category, while the closer it is to 100 then the greater the likelihood they will switch.

Research was carried out by Amárach Research, through an online survey, conducted amongst 1001 adults aged 15+. Quotas were set on gender, age, social class and region to achieve a sample aligned with the national population. Interviewing fieldwork was conducted in April 2014.

About permanent tsb

With permanent tsb’s current account, customers can avoid quarterly fees, direct debit fees and day-to-day transaction fees. Details as follows:

  • No quarterly fees or day-to-day transaction fees when you lodge €1,500 a month (if you don’t lodge €1,500 every month, you’ll have to pay €12 a quarter).
  • Other transaction charges may apply eg: unpaid items or ATM usage outside the EU. See our fees & charges booklet for more info.
  • You don't need to maintain a minimum balance on the account.
  • 1% Annual Equivalent rate (AER) (variable) Credit Interest on balances up to €1,500.
  • A Switch Buddy to make switching hassle-free.
  • eStatements only with this account.
  • Available to personal customers only.

Terms and conditions apply. Generally interest is subject to Deposit Interest Retention Tax (DIRT) at the prevailing rate but is subject to change.

Award winning switcher team refers to our Contact Centre Management Association award. Details can be found on

For more information on how to avoid senseless current account fees – visit the Switch Centre, tweet us @askpermanenttsb or call 1890 500 188.

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