Yup as @j06 notes they’re not known for speed. Probably at least as long as HSBC, if not longer. The app is very basic too (in a nice way if that’s your thing!) so apart from the whole cool black and white vibe I don’t think you would gain anything by using HSBC instead of FD.
The Phone chat is (sometimes) still really great, but it’s not what it once was.
BTW there’s a separate First Direct feedback chat, perhaps @AlanDoe could oblige and merge into that?
I’ve been ticking through the account switching rewards over the last few months and I think they are all as bad as each other pretty much, which an exception of Starling.
Starling - Opened instantly. Ready to go, I think I could use ApplePay at this point too. A bit of a delay with the card, but I think that was probably more RM and strikes than anything they did.
FD - Awful. The sent me half a tree in the post, I needed more passwords, pins, memorable questions and biometric data than I’d need to be able to visit MI5. The only plus here is that when you call, within 30 seconds you’re talking to a person. Changing phones caused even more issues. AVOID.
Lloyds - Account was open instantly but it was a secondary account, so no KYC required.
Natwest - Ruined my application, couldn’t talk to anyone about it, 5 different support people couldn’t help, in branch sort of helped but it just made it worse in the end, so I gave up.
Nationwide - Quite smooth. I only did it last week and I have the card/pin already, but trying to set the app up, it told me to “wait a few days”
Unless you’re in a monster rush, I wouldn’t worry about it. A few days doesn’t really make that much difference in the grand scheme of things.
Unarranged overdrafts aren’t really controlled by the bank. Some transactions can and will put you in this position and it’s down to you to prevent that IE don’t use your card to pay for bus journeys or TfL unless you can maintain your balance for the full journey amount as it won’t leave your account for a few days sometimes. That’s also not the banks fault, but the transport company processes doing som
As you authorise these transactions the bank has to pay them based on the auth that point in time.