I applied for a tag that allows you to drive quickly through tolls as I’m there every few weeks. I want to use Monzo for obvious reasons however I received this email when I signed up. What does this mean?
We thank you for your order.
However, after analyzing your bank’s BIC code, we note that the bank account you provided to us does not allow us to collect invoices.
In order to comply with our general conditions of sale: the contract can only be concluded by providing an IBAN from the EURO zone and authorizing SEPA direct debits.
We will cancel your order.
We remain at your disposal for any further information.
Ulys subscription service
In essence it’s stating you need a bank account with a eurozone/EEA bank account number (IBAN). Whilst the UK is part of the bigger SEPA zone for connecting euro (€) payments, your Monzo number has GB in it, which France won’t accept.
Long story as to why France in particular won’t accept UK IBANs when the SEPA rules state it should but, briefly, it comes from IBANs being pretty much hard–wired into French payment systems, so they’re difficult to update when somewhere like the UK joins the SEPA group, and there is no political drive to change, probably due to French industrial protectionism.
Wise will give you a Euro account with a non-UK IBAN, as will Bankera.
Starling supports SEPA direct debits (I have a Starling euro account for exactly this reason)
This is a great site which explains the problem and how to complain, and Starling has signed up to the campaign:
(You’ll land directly at news about France, but the whole site is good.)
I think the point is not whether UK accounts support SEPA, but whether (in this case) French services support UK accounts.
Indeed - but I use a Starling euro account with a SANEF toll subscription so can confirm it definitely works.
SANEF have an office in Yorkshire, and issue a tag that works on all toll roads in France - I have used them for years. Charges are made to your UK bank account, via direct debit for tolls (there are initial charges for setting up etc., but the cost of the tag is refunded on return). One benefit of a UK office is that there is an ass you can kick if something goes wrong!
Excellent. Thanks for posting about this @Shangary