Paying in a US dollar cheque in the UK?

My wife is a UK/US dual national, who has been permanently resident in the UK for the last 25 years. Much to our surprise, a $1700 US Economic Impact Payment cheque (sorry, check!) just came through our UK letterbox - although she files US taxes each year, there’s never any US tax to pay because of the foreign earned income exclusion, and we’d assumed that the stimulus programme was for US residents only. Clearly not.

Anyway, any advice about how to pay it in? She hasn’t had a US bank account for years. We have a joint account with First Direct and I’d guess they’d deal with it for a hefty fee, but wondering if there are cheaper / simpler alternatives? Would prefer not to have to visit a branch in current circumstances

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0.5% min £10 max £50 charge

Would need to be taken to a HSBC branch I guess.

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I understand that US banks mostly have check/cheque imaging. I wonder if it’s easy/possible to to open a US account from the UK, given that the account holder will be a US national?

If that works, then you could use something like Chime to pay in the cheque to your US account, then something like TransferWise to move it over to your UK account.


To wrap this one up in case anyone else looks in the future, I paid it in via First Direct and it was actually extremely quick and efficient - sent via post, only took a couple of days to credit the cheque, the fee was £5 despite the documentation saying £10 minimum, and exchange rate was very close to the spot rate.